Rangeland Management:

Grazing Lease Arrangements of Bureau of Land Management Permittees

RCED-86-168BR: Published: May 30, 1986. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 1986.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the: (1) extent to which the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) permittees sublease their grazing privileges; and (2) adequacy of BLM regulations to control that practice.

GAO found that: (1) BLM grazing regulations prohibit base property owners from profiting by assigning or conveying permits to graze on public land without transferring ownership or control of the base property; and (2) range management officials at eight BLM resource area offices did not know of any permittees with leases who did not have control of both base property and the livestock grazing on the assigned public lands. GAO also found that: (1) nationwide, BLM offices reported 12 instances of grazing subleasing and $11,169 in collections for the quarter ended March 31, 1986; (2) although BLM regulations prohibit base property owners from profiting through subleasing of public rangelands, they do not prohibit fees in excess of those BLM charges from being incorporated into a broader lease arrangement encompassing both the base property and the related public rangeland; and (3) because BLM does not require its grazing permittees to disclose financial information in lease agreement filed with BLM, it is unable to identify excess fees for public rangeland incorporated in a lease arrangement.

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