1980 letter from Interior Deputy Solicitor Fred Ferguson in which
the Interior Department interprets the role of state law in RS 2477
The 1988 "Hodel Policy" in which Interior Secretary Hodel argues
construction can include kicking rocks out of the way.
1993, memo from the National Park Service detailing the
"devastating" impacts RS 2477 claims could have on national parks.
The June 1993 Department of the Interior's 220-page report to
Congress, on RS 2477, loaded with useful reference material. This
report is broken into 3 pieces (each less than 5 MG) for ease of
Appendices I and II, and
Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt's
1994, draft regulations (never finalized) that would have
established a process for addressing RS 2477 claims
and answers prepared by the Department that explain the proposed
The text of Section 108 of
Public Law 104-208, enacted on September 30, 1996, which placed
a moratorium on the Interior Department adopting "any final rule or
regulation ...pertaining to the recognition, management, or validity
of a right-of-way pursuant to Revised Statute 2477."
BLM's internal manual on how to deal with RS 2477, last updated
in early 1996. This manual has apparently been superseded by
Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt's 1997 memo (see next bullet).
Bruce Babbitt's January 1997 policy
strictly limiting which RS
2477 claims the agency will approve, and revoking the 1988 "Hodel
August 20, 1997, General Accounting Office opinion concluding
that Congress had permanently banned the Interior Department from
adopting new regulations concerning R.S. 2477.
Bruce Babbitt's August
27, 1997 draft legislation to address the RS 2477 issue once and
Service's September 25, 1997, letter essentially adopting
Secretary Babbitt's moratorium on processing RS 2477 claims unless
there is a 'demonstrated, compelling, and immediate need .'
May 1998 analysis of the then-current state of affairs
concerning RS 2477 drafted by an Interior Department attorney.
The June 25, 2001,
of US District Judge Tena Campbell in the case of Southern Utah
Wilderness Alliance v. BLM.
A December 17, 2001,
proposal from Utah
Governor Mike Leavitt to Interior Department Deputy Secretary
Steve Griles to adopt a policy allowing all kinds of paths to become
highways under RS 2477. Obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.
10, 2002, memo proposing that Interior Department adopt a
proposal similar to Gov. Leavitt's December 17, 2001, proposal. It
proposes granting highway rights-of-way to pedestrian paths, and
eliminating the requirement that rights-of-way actually be
constructed. Also obtained through FOIA.
undated draft of
Interior Department policy, apparently a later version of the
May 10, 2002, proposal, explicitly disavowing all prior reasonable
Interior Department positions (including one from 1898!). Also
obtained through FOIA.
The January 6, 2003,
Disclaimer Rule Amendments
draft policy from DOI,
showing that the Bush administration was hoping to throw the Babbitt
policy of 1997 in the trash can and start over (a strategy it did
not ultimately adopt). The draft, obtained through the Freedom of
Information Act, was heavily redacted by DOI.
a partial January 2003 draft, edited by the Forest Service,
obtained through another FOIA request, and a
February 2003 memo from Interior Department Attorney Matt McKeown
to Interior Secretary Norton explaining the draft policy, similarly
The April 9, 2003,
Utah-Interior Department Memorandum of Understanding
June 25, 2003,
guidance on implementing the April 9, 2003, memorandum of
understanding between the State of Utah and the Department of the
Congressional Research Service's November 7, 2003, report on RS
2477 and Disclaimers of Interest.
The BLM's April 22, 2005, regulations concerning the management
of Title V rights-of-way (an alternative to R.S. 2477).
BLM's July 14, 2005,
Instruction Memorandum and
establishing procedures for all states and counties to negotiate
agreements with the Interior Department to ease the recognition of
RS 2477 rights-of-way.
Tenth Circuit's Court of Appeals September 8, 2005, decision in
Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance v. BLM.
fact sheet explaining the decision from 2006.
The Department of
2006, memo on how the agency is planning to respond to the SUWA
v. BLM decision.
Department's RS 2477 guidance of March 22, 2006,
March 22, 2006.