Skip to comments.Ted Cruz sends letter to Bureau of Land Management requesting answers regarding Red River lands
Posted on 04/25/2014 11:34:00 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, issued the following letter April 24 to the Bureau of Land Management asking the agency to respond to concerns raised by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott about the Red River Boundary Compact and associated lands.
The Honorable Neil Kornze
Bureau of Land Management
United States Department of the Interior
1849 C Street NW, Room 5665
Washington, DC 20240
Dear Director Kornze,
In a letter dated April 22nd, 2014, the Attorney General of Texas Greg Abbott asked for responses to five specific inquiries regarding Bureau of Land Management land claims along the Red River.
These concerns were prompted by reports from BLM field hearings that the federal government may claim up to 90,000 acres of land along the Red River.
Atty. General Abbott issued a letter to BLM asking for the following concerns to be addressed, in writing. I also would like BLM to respond to these requests.
1. Please delineate with specificity each of the steps for the RMP/EIS process for property along the Red River.
2. Please describe the procedural due process the BLM will afford to Texans whose property may be claimed by the federal government.
3. Please confirm whether the BLM agrees that, from 1923 until the ratification of the Red River Boundary Compact, the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma was the gradient line of the south bank of the Red River. To the extent the BLM does not agree, please provide legal analysis supporting the BLMs position.
4. Please confirm whether the BLM still considers Congress ratification of the Red River Boundary Compact as determinative of its interest in land along the Red River. To the extent the BLM does not agree, please provide legal analysis supporting the BLMs new position.
5. Please delineate with specificity the amount of Texas territory that would be impacted by the BLMs decision to claim this private land as the property of the federal government.
Though BLM issued a statement from April 23, 2014 in which the agency states that: BLM is categorically not expanding Federal holdings along the Red River, this response does not answer General Abbotts concerns. In addition, BLMs statement does not address whether the agency takes the position that the 90,000 acres of land in question along the Red River is already BLM land, which would make the agencys categorical denial an act of deceptive sophistry.
Therefore, I would like to make an additional inquiry:
6. Please confirm that BLM does not take the position that it has rights to ownership or control of any of the 90,000 acres of land along the Red River that are at the center of this controversy or similarly situated land. If it claims any such rights, please identify with specificity the acreage, location and legal basis for claiming those rights.
If BLM indeed does not intend to claim any land which it does not already administer along the Red River, the answers to these questions should be quite straightforward.
I ask that you or your staff respond in writing to General Abbott and me, answering our questions directly and specifically, as soon as possible.
I am really liking Ted Cruz A LOT.
Me, too. He’s my guy in 2016 because he simply doesn’t take any sh!t from anybody.
Cruz is over the target.
Exactly, just what we need. I bet he doesn’t CRY either.
He looks like Walter Peck.
A fag and his beard?
I like the way you think. So it is written, so it should be done.
FROM THE BLM website:
Since March 1, 2013, Neil Kornze has been leading the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as the agency’s Principal Deputy Director. Kornze oversees the agency’s management of more than 245 million acres of public land nationwide.
Prior to serving in his current role, Kornze was the BLM’s Acting Deputy Director for Policy and Programs starting in October 2011. Kornze joined the organization in January 2011 as a Senior Advisor to the Director. In these roles, he worked on a broad range of issues, including renewable and conventional energy development, transmission siting, and conservation policy.
Kornze was a key player in the development of the Western Solar Plan and the agency’s successful authorization of more than 10,000 megawatts of renewable energy, surpassing a congressionally-established goal 3 years ahead of schedule. He has also been active in tribal consultation, especially as it relates to oil and gas and renewable energy development.
Before coming to the BLM, Kornze worked as a Senior Policy Advisor to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada. In his work for Senator Reid, which spanned from early 2003 to early 2011, he worked on a variety of public lands issues, including renewable energy development, mining, water, outdoor recreation, rural development, and wildlife. Kornze has also served as an international election observer in Macedonia, the Ukraine, and Georgia, and he is co-author of an article in The Oxford Companion to American Law.
Raised in Elko, Nevada, Kornze is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate with a degree in Politics from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington. He earned a masters degree in International Relations at the London School of Economics.
quote “BLM is categorically not expanding Federal holdings along the Red River”
the KEY words there ... “not expanding”
the BLM believes they already have ownership of the land, and thus are “not expanding” the amount of land they are taking.
This is what happens when lawyers run out government.
Make us proud Ted, make us proud.
Cruz always makes us proud. :)
Hear that thunder in the background,,it’s the big guns,,and they are getting closer to BLM.
Thank you, Cruz!
My bloodlines in this state are older than your pathetic bureaucracy. P*ss off.
” management of more than 245 million acres of public land “
What’s that you say,,PUBLIC Land?
I am the public.
Just try to occupy a piece of the “public land” and see what happens. ;-)
There is a way to do that, but we need to wait for them to act first. If they don’t cease and desist, then yes they are all open season. If not, it makes no sense to do what they do.
RED RIVER BOUNDARY COMPACT
“... Gov. George W. Bush of Texas signed the legislation into law on May 24, 1999; Gov. Frank Keating of Oklahoma followed suit on June 4.
Thus, the Red River Boundary Compact became the legal document establishing the permanent political boundary between Oklahoma and Texas. The compact declares the vegetation line along the south bank of the Red River extending on a line from the 100th Meridian east to Lake Texoma as the northern border of Texas. Land between the south bank and the meridian line of the river belongs to the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache tribes and is held in trust by the federal government. The riverbed north of the meridian line belongs to the state of Oklahoma. The lone exception to the south bank being the northern border of Texas is spelled out under Article II, Section b.1, which states that in the Texoma area the boundary extends from “the intersection of the vegetation line on the south bank with the east bank of Shawnee Creek.” The line, depicted by the characters (”-..-”) in the Lake Texoma Fishing and Boating Map, Number A353, continues to the foot of the Denison Dam....”
Doesn’t sound like there’s much land in the BLM’s hands.
That raises a question or two. There are landowners along the Red River holding title for a hundred or more years.
Now the Governors of Oklahoma and Texas may indeed have some right to agree where the boundary between two states are subject to the legislature passing such a law.
That doesn’t give them the right to ignore the private property interests and declare any part of the individuals property holdings to belong to the Indians, or the Feds, does it?
Just because the river changes course, shouldn’t change the ownership of the actual land, it should just mean that the individual may own more or less in Texas or Oklahoma.
This is a fine example why Ted Cruz was elected over Dewhurst.
Love it Ted.
Any rancher man does an invite, may have to take’em up on some campfire, chilli and a sud or two.
Love that flag! Is it available anywhere?
"On what Constitutional grounds do you continue to own any of this land?"
Easter's over...our Reps need to get back to work, and cease riding the coattails of Senator Cruz!!!!!!
An “off the charts brilliant” lawyer doesn’t ask questions to which he doesn’t already know the answers, therefore, Ted has set a trap for the BLM. I can’t wait to see what it is.
I assume any changes made then were under Eminent Domain, with compensation to owners,
Also that changes in a river’s course are ‘old stuff’ legally.
Haven’t seen a good article on the issues involved. Doesn’t seem like the BLM could cause much trouble about the thin strip they ‘hold in trust’ for the Indians.
That particular case dating back about 30 years ago was not taken by Eminent Domain, and the land owner did not receive any compensation.
He had a loan that the US Government gave him, where they acknowledged the property was his, and title insurance for the land showing clear title to him.
As I understand it, he and another private party (not the Feds) had a court dispute in Oklahoma regarding the boundary, and the Oklahoma judge made the ruling, that the land belonged to neither party, but to the Feds.
So he had to continue to pay his loan off which included the price of that land, or they could have foreclosed on the entire ranch. The title insurance refused to pay.
None of which makes any legal sense to me. Now because of this case, the BLM says it owns some 116 miles of land along the Red River, and that’s about 90,000 acres. That’s seems to me like more than a small strip of no trouble.
So that’ the situation as I understand it, but I still can’t figure out any logical reason for that judge to have made such a ruling. Now, I could be mistaken, but I have read as much as I could find, and listened to the interviews of Tommy Henderson, so I am hoping that someone here will be able to get some more details.
Also that changes in a rivers course are old stuff legally
George Bush signed the agreement making the boundry line the south bank of the Red River at the vegetation line. That’s not so old.
It also means that the boundary line for the states changes when the river channel changes. The real estate that I am familiar with usually starts at the mid point of the river or stream, but the person on the North or South still own the property North or South from the mid-point - it’s not used as an excuse to give it to someone else.
Cattle! With power over that thin strip from mid-river to ‘the vegetation line’ the BLM can destroy the local landowners by denying cattle access to water.
... For the good of some species of gnat or crawdad.
Not sure what a “vegetation line” is. BLM probably would also claim grass isn’t ‘vegetation’...
The border of Texas has twice been decided by the Supreme Court to be the southern bank (or worse) of the Red River:http://digital.library.okstate.edu/Chronicles/v002/v002p298.html.
Not aware of the specific case you mentioned.
The border of Texas has twice been decided by the Supreme Court to be the southern bank (or worse) of the Red River:http://digital.library.okstate.edu/Chronicles/v002/v002p298
Yes, I knew about the Supreme Court cases. This case was decided in a Federal District Court located in Oklahoma. Texas Landowner Tommy Henderson lost over a hundred acres, but as I understand it, it was between him and some other person (not BLM).
I have read a few articles about the case, but have yet to see any that give enough particulars to find it, and review the case, nor has there been any links.
Like I said, I am just hoping that someone is able to find it and enllighten us all. I thought by asking the question, maybe someone else would pick up on it.
Wish I knew, Nanette. I just found the image in the wild and posted it here because it expresses everything we're about. If I run into a source for them, I'll let you know.
Question if either of you have any info/observations.
Looking at a map of Red River along the Texas/Oklahoma border it seems to me the
map shows the state boundary varying to both sides of the Red River.
Take the following map and explode it until you get a close up of the Tx/Ok, Red River
area and look at the supposed state boundary.
The Red River Boundary Compact
multiple articles here: