Truckee Meadows Public Lands Management Act

Questions, comments or requests for information related to the draft Truckee Meadows Public Lands Management Act may be submitted to   Nevadans wishing to provide comments on this working draft can submit them until June 6th, 2023.

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Rosen Unveils Working Draft of Washoe County Lands Bill, Announces Public Feedback Period

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Between April and July of 2016, Washoe County, the City of Reno and City of Sparks approved letters of resolution to support the creation of a lands bill to address population growth occurring in Washoe County. Since that time, much work has been done to create a proposal for federal legislation to help our region with growth and establishing permanent conservation lands in Washoe County.

The Nevada model, created by the Southern Nevada Public Lands Management Act (SNPLMA), allows for federal land to be made eligible for disposal, creates permanent land conservation, conveys land to local government entities for recreation and public purposes, transfers additional land into trust for local tribes, and helps to fund additional land preservation and conservation projects statewide.

The goals of the Truckee Meadows Public Lands Management Act are to:

  • Address housing demand and affordability
  • Fund continued preservation of open space and enhance quality of life
  • Support trail and park infrastructure enhancements
  • Assist with public land management and improve access to recreation and resources for land management
  • Designate of new Wilderness and National Conservation Areas in northern Washoe County
  • Address infrastructure needs to accommodate regional growth
  • Align with the Regional Plan Update

Conveyance to Local Government

This proposal will authorize conveyance of specific lands to the following bodies for recreation and public purposes:

  • Washoe County
  • City of Reno
  • City of Sparks
  • Washoe County School District
  • Truckee River Flood Management Authority
  • Nevada Department of Wildlife
  • Nevada Division of State Lands
  • Incline Village General Improvement District
  • University of Nevada, Reno

Total conveyance to all local government entities for public purposes totals 4,701 acres.


This proposal makes specific parcels of federal land eligible for sale and subsequent development, as appropriate, to support sustainable growth in the region. Under this proposal, 14,606 acres will be eligible to be nominated for sale. Differing from the SNPLMA model, this proposal does not include a disposal boundary.

All lands that are eligible for sale must be nominated and undergo an environmental review by the Federal agency that manages that land to determine if sale of the parcel is appropriate. Under the current proposal, if the federal land manager determines sale to be appropriate, Washoe County would also need to give their approval before development can occur. The land would be sold for no less than fair market value. The development of the land would also need to comply with all current zoning and planning requirements, including review by the Truckee Meadows Regional Planning Agency and the jurisdiction that the land is being developed in.

Under this proposal, revenue from the sale of these federal lands will be divided between the State of Nevada General Education Fund (5%), Truckee River conservation projects (10%), and a special account available to the Secretary of the Treasury (85%). This means that the proceeds from the sale of land in Washoe County will stay in Washoe County to benefit the residents here, rather than those funds going back to the U.S. Treasury.

The special account can be used for things such as:

  • Parks, Trails, and Natural Areas
  • Hazardous Fuels Reduction and Wildfire Prevention
  • Conservation Initiatives
  • Acquisition of Environmentally Sensitive Lands

Conservation Designations:

The proposal designates Wilderness Areas, National Conservation Areas, and Special Management Areas to permanently protect public lands within Washoe county. The proposal also releases portions of Wilderness Study Areas that are not appropriate for wilderness back to public multi-use.

  • This proposal allows grazing, recreation, hunting, and access to continue within designated Wilderness Areas, National Conservation Areas, and Special Management Areas.
  • Wilderness Study Areas are permanent until Congress acts through legislation.
  • Motorized vehicle use is only permitted on marked roads in Wilderness Areas, and roads identified in the management plan of National Conservation Areas.

This proposal will increase the permanent conservation of land in Washoe County by permanently designating: 223,109 acres as Wilderness Areas, 456,292 acres as National Conservation Areas, 36,405 acres as a Special Management Area, and 3,881 acres as a Cultural Heritage Area to be co-managed by local Tribes and the Bureau of Land Management.


This proposal will expand land held in trust for local Tribal communities, including:

  • 8,787 acres for the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony
  • 11,451 acres for the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe
  • 2,177 acres for the Washoe Tribe

Comments and Feedback

Questions, comments or requests for information related to the draft Truckee Meadows Public Lands Management Act may be submitted to   Nevadans wishing to provide comments on this working draft can submit them until June 6th, 2023.

Discussion Draft: Truckee Meadows Public Lands Management


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