Idaho Statutes
pecnv.out

TITLE 58
PUBLIC LANDS
CHAPTER 12
PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE
58-1201.  Findings. The legislature hereby finds and declares:
(1)  Upon admission of the state of Idaho into the union, the title to the beds of navigable waters became state property, and subject to its jurisdiction and disposal under the equal footing doctrine. According to the United States supreme court’s decision in Shively v. Bowlby, the state has the right to dispose of the beds of navigable waters, "in such manner as [it] might deem proper,… subject only to the paramount right of navigation and commerce." The state has the right to determine for itself "to what extent it will preserve its rights of ownership in them, or confer them on others," Shively v. Bowlby, 152 U.S. 1, 56 (1893); and
(2)  Since the admission of the state of Idaho into the union, article XV of the constitution of the state of Idaho has governed the appropriation and use of the waters of Idaho. Pursuant to article XV of the constitution of the state of Idaho, the legislature of the state of Idaho has enacted a comprehensive system of laws for the appropriation, transfer and use of the waters of Idaho, which addresses the public interest therein; and
(3)  Upon admission of the state of Idaho into the union, the state was granted certain lands by the United States government as an endowment for designated institutions. Article IX of the constitution of the state of Idaho, and laws enacted pursuant thereto, establish a comprehensive system of laws for the management of state endowment lands, which addresses the public interest therein; and
(4)  The common law doctrine known as the public trust doctrine, adopted by inference in section 73-116, Idaho Code, has guided the alienation or encumbrance of the title to the beds of navigable waters held in trust by the state. The public trust doctrine has been cited in court decisions and pleadings in ways that have created confusion in the administration and management of the waters and endowment lands; and
(5)  The public’s interest in the environment is protected in other parts of Idaho’s constitutional or statutory law; and
(6)  The purpose of this act is to clarify the application of the public trust doctrine in the state of Idaho and to expressly declare the limits of this common law doctrine in accordance with the authority recognized in each state to define the extent of the common law.

History:
[58-1201, added 1996, ch. 342, sec. 1, p. 1147.]


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