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Lawmakers advance bill to sell more state land

Idaho lawmakers advanced measures to expand state land officials’ options for managing state-owned land that benefits public schools.
The Senate State Affairs Committee approved an amendment to the state’s Constitution that would let the Department of Lands sell more than 320 acres of trust land to a single developer, and more than 160 acres of university land.
Agency managers also want to get rid of a constitutional requirement that the state’s 2.4 million acres be sold only through public auction, saying the mandate blocks them from entering into profit-sharing agreements with commercial developers.
The agency estimates the constitutional changes would enable it to make up to 30 percent more on land sales.
Two-thirds of the House and Senate must back the amendments. Then voters must approve them on the ballot in November.

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