This week, Congressman Ted Poe (R-TX) introduced the American Land Act. This bill would require the Administration to open up nearly 1/4 of the land currently owned by the federal government for sale to the American people. The federal government currently owns 27% (623 million acres) of the total land in the United States. This land is larger than the countries of France, Spain, Germany, Poland, Italy, United Kingdom, Austria, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Belgium put together. The proceeds from the salespotentially $200 billion or more--would be directly applied to reduce the federal budget deficit.
It is time for the federal government to let Americans own American land. The government cannot afford its massive estate; we need to give up some of our assets so that we can pay our bills, said Poe. Allowing Americans to buy American land would provide a way to generate new revenue without new taxes, create new jobs and stimulate economic growth. Transferring ownership of natural resources to the public would also be a more efficient way to utilize our natural assets. This is a common sense solution to reducing the national debt.
Allowing Americans to purchase 24.3% (174 million acres) of this land would have the potential to generate up to $200 billion or more to pay off the federal budget deficit. The bill does not authorize the sale of land owned by the National Park Service or the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.