- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 31, 2015

PHOENIX (AP) - The Senate has pushed through two proposals to transfer federal public lands to the state.

The bills by Republicans Rep. Brenda Barton of Payson and Rep. Bob Thorpe of Flagstaff ask the federal government to transfer all public lands to the state before 2022.

Barton’s House Bill 2318 allows Arizona to join a state compact for the transfer of public lands, which Utah passed last year. The compact creates a commission to secure sovereignty and jurisdiction over Western states’ public lands.

The bill passed on a 17-12 vote Monday.

House Bill 2176 by Thorpe allows the federal government to turn over all land that does not serve a purpose outlined in the U.S. Constitution.

Thorpe’s bill received initial approval and now awaits a formal vote.

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