Arizona State Trust Lands, Proposition 105 (2006)

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Arizona Proposition 105, also called the State Trust Lands Act, was on the November 7, 2006 election ballot in Arizona as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment. It was defeated.[1]

If it had passed, it would have given the state of Arizona more power in managing and selling State Trust Lands.

Election results

State Trust Lands
Defeatedd No1,020,80771.3%
Yes 410,106 28.7%
Election results from Arizona Elections Department.

Text of measure

The language that appeared on the ballot:

In 1910, the United States Congress passed the Arizona-New Mexico Enabling Act, allowing Arizona to become a state. The Enabling Act granted Arizona 10.9 million acres of land, referred to as "state trust land," to be held in trust for the benefit of the named beneficiaries, primarily the public schools, as well as other public institutions (colleges, hospitals, prisons, etc.). Both the Enabling Act and the Arizona Constitution provide that the state can lease or sell trust land, and the natural products (timber, minerals, etc.) of the land, to the "highest and best bidder" at advertised public auction and lands and products offered for sale must be appraised at and sold for not less than "true value." Proposition 105 would amend the Arizona Constitution to:

1. Allow trust land in urban areas that was classified or eligible for designation as suitable for conservation prior to 2005 to be conveyed to a county, city or town without advertisement or auction upon payment of compensation. Any lease, right-of-way or other use in existence may continue.

2. Require the legislature to create a method for designating up to 400,000 acres of trust land outside of urban areas for conservation purposes and conveying those lands without advertisement, auction or compensation to the county in which the land is located. Any lease, right-of-way or other use in existence may continue.

3. Generally provide that the newspaper advertising period for the public auction of trust lands be reduced from 10 consecutive weeks to 5 consecutive weeks, while adding a new requirement that the auction notice be posted on the State Land Department web site for at least 35 days prior to the auction.

4. Allow the granting of public rights-of-way on trust land to governmental entities without advertisement or auction.

5. Allow trust land to be leased without auction.

6. Require that rights-of-way for public roadways originating before 1968 shall be granted without requiring further payment.

7. Generally provide that any trust land designated as conservation land must be held in trust by a governmental entity, be restricted against "development" and be managed in a manner consistent with "conservation," but not required to be accessible to the public unless and until conveyed out of the state land trust, as those terms are defined in this proposal.

8. Require that any commercial land use planning for trust lands in an urban area be prepared in consultation with the county, city or town where the land is located, according to generally applicable regulations that apply equally to similar private property in the jurisdiction. The land use plan, however, may designate a greater portion of trust land as suitable for conservation, and that land may be conveyed to the county, city or town, without advertisement or auction, for money or other forms of value if: a. The disposition of the conservation land brings benefit to other trust land subject to the plan. b. The value of all of the trust land subject to the plan is not diminished.

Section 4 of Proposition 105, relating to nonurban conservation lands, does not become effective if Proposition 106 is enacted by the voters at the November, 2006 election. Proposition 105 does not become fully effective unless the United States Congress amends the Arizona-New Mexico Enabling Act prior to 2009 to authorize the changes contained in this proposal.[2]

Supporting Arguments

John Nelson, State Representative, District 12, Litchfield Park wrote the following

HCR 2045 was created and vetted through a multi hearing and committee review process in the House and the Senate providing opportunities for those on both sides to present their comments. HCR 2045 preserves the goal of providing the highest and best use and highest and best bid while providing for up to 500,000 acres of rural and urban conservation lands and preservation of game corridors. HCR 2045 also provides for realistic planning procedures, preservation of existing rights-of-way and an assured process of achieveing the highest and best return to the trustees including the largest trustees i.e. the children of our state and their education. we are not in the business of subsidizing the development community through sale of lands on the basis of future revenues. HCR 2045 requires cash at the time of sale. I support 2045. If you care about educating our youth, you should too.

Opposing Arguments

John H. Wright, III, President, Arizona Education Association, Phoenix wrote the following

The Arizona Education Association represents over 35,000 teachers and education support professionals in nearly every school district across the state of Arizona. Public schools are the primary beneficiaries of any funding obtained from the sale or lease of state trust lands. We oppose this measure because we believe Arizona can do better for its children, its schools and its citizens. This initiative conserves only 43,000 acres of land in urban areas, and even then it allows continued development until January of 2009. It grants millions of dollars in rights-of-way without any future payment to the Trust, and constitutionally provides for the renewal of grazing leases on nearly 8 million acres of trust land with little or no review. The measure fails to include a process for public or beneficiary oversight and vests the power to designate future lands for conservation solely in the hands of the Land Commissioner and the state legislature, should they even choose to do so. As teachers and educators, we believe this initiative jeopardizes the long term health of the trust and the financial benefit to education. It fails to strike the critical balance needed between education and conservation in order to preserve our most cherished urban and rural lands AND financially benefit the Trust. We urge you to VOTE NO on Prop 105. Arizona can do better.

See also

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External links


  1. Arizona 2006 election results
  2. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.