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      RS 31:149     

  

CHAPTER 8. MINERAL RIGHTS IN LAND ACQUIRED

OR EXPROPRIATED BY GOVERNMENTS OR

GOVERNMENTAL AGENCIES

§149. Mineral rights reserved from acquisitions of land by governments or agencies thereof imprescriptible; prescription period in acquisitions for economic development

            A. "Acquiring authority" for the purposes of this Section means (1) the United States, the state of Louisiana, and a subdivision, department, or agency of either the United States or the state of Louisiana; (2) any legal entity with authority to expropriate or condemn, except an electric public utility acquiring land without expropriation. An electric public utility acquiring land through expropriation shall be considered as an acquiring authority; and (3) a nonprofit entity, recognized under Sections 501(c)(3) and 170 of the Internal Revenue Code as being organized and operated as a public charitable organization, that is certified by the secretary of the Department of Natural Resources to be a state or national land conservation organization. The certification shall be in writing and shall be a public record. Such certification shall not for that reason alone be construed to authorize the nonprofit entity to exercise expropriation powers. With respect to certifications occurring on and after August 1, 2004, an entity's certification shall require approval by official action of both the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and the House Committee on Natural Resources and Environment.

            B. When land is acquired from any person by an acquiring authority through act of sale, exchange, donation, or other contract, or by condemnation, appropriation, or expropriation, and a mineral right subject to the prescription of nonuse is reserved in the instrument or judgment by which the land is acquired, prescription of the mineral right is interrupted as long as title to the land remains with the acquiring authority, or any successor that is also an acquiring authority. The instrument or judgment shall reflect the intent to reserve or exclude the mineral rights from the acquisition and their imprescriptibility as authorized under the provisions of this Section and shall be recorded in the conveyance records of the parish in which the land is located.

            C. If part of the land subject to the mineral right as set forth in Subsection B is divested by the acquiring authority to another who is not an acquiring authority, the mineral right is not divided. However, prescription of the mineral right as to the land divested shall commence and accrue unless it is interrupted by use of the mineral right.

            D. If a mineral right subject to prescription has already been established over land at the time it is acquired by an acquiring authority, the mineral right shall continue to be subject to the prescription of nonuse to the same extent as if the acquiring authority had not acquired the land. Upon the prescription or other extinction of such mineral right, the transferor of the land shall without further action or agreement become vested with a mineral right identical to that extinguished, if (1) the instrument or judgment by which the land was acquired expressly reserves or purports to reserve the mineral right to the transferor, whether or not the transferor then actually owns the mineral right that is reserved, and (2) the land is still owned by an acquiring authority at the time of extinguishment.

            E. Rights or interests in land originally acquired by an acquiring authority through expropriation and subject to a mineral reservation shall not be transferred by the same or subsequent acquiring authority to another who is not an acquiring authority, unless an exception is provided in R.S. 41:1338 or prior to the transfer:

            (1) The acquiring authority first offers to sell or transfer the same right or interest back to the person or entity, or his heirs or successors, from whom such right or interest was originally acquired, if such person or entity still retains the mineral rights reserved.

            (2) The offer shall be in writing and shall be based upon the fair market value of the right or interest.

            (3) The offer shall be delivered by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the last known address of the grantor. The grantor shall have thirty calendar days from the date of receipt to accept or reject the offer in writing. Failure to respond timely shall create a presumption of rejection of the offer.

            (4) If the last known address of the grantor cannot be determined, or if there has been no written response from the grantor to the acquiring authority accepting or rejecting the offer after thirty calendar days from date of receipt, the acquiring authority may institute a civil action by summary proceeding to show cause why the offer should not be considered rejected. A grantor whose last known address cannot be determined shall be treated as an absentee defendant.

            F. The provisions of Subsection E shall not apply to any property acquired or disposed of by the Department of Transportation and Development pursuant to Part XII or Part XVIII of Chapter 1 of Title 48 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950.

            G. The provisions of this Chapter shall not apply to:

            (1) A transfer to an acquiring authority arising from the nonpayment of ad valorem taxes, or by enforcement of privileges, mortgages, judgments or other obligations for money.

            (2) A transfer in which the acquiring authority neither expressly reserves or excludes nor conveys to the transferor a mineral right otherwise subject to prescription.

            (3) A transfer to an acquiring authority of land with an existing mineral right subject to prescription in which the instrument or judgment transferring the land does not expressly purport to reserve the mineral right to the transferor or otherwise exclude the mineral right from the acquisition.

            (4) Any lands or mineral rights that are the subject of agreements made pursuant to R.S. 41:1702.

            H.(1) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, when land within the Atchafalaya Basin Floodway is acquired from any person by an acquiring authority by conventional deed, donation, or other contract or by condemnation or expropriation proceedings and by the act of acquisition, order, or judgment, a mineral right otherwise subject to the prescription of nonuse is reserved, the prescription of nonuse shall thereafter not run against the right whether the title to the land remains in the acquiring authority, or is subsequently transferred to a third person, public or private.

            (2) For purposes of this Section, "Atchafalaya Basin Floodway" means that area bounded by U.S. Highway 190 on the north, U.S. Highway 90 on the south, the East Atchafalaya Basin Protection levee on the east, and the West Atchafalaya Basin Protection levee on the west.

            I. When land is acquired from any person by an acquiring authority or other person, through act of sale, exchange, donation, or other contract, as part of an economic development project pursuant to a cooperative endeavor agreement between the acquiring authority and the state through the Department of Economic Development, as evidenced in a certification by the secretary of the Department of Economic Development attached to the instrument by which the land is acquired, and a mineral right subject to the prescription of nonuse is reserved in the instrument by which the land is acquired, the prescription of nonuse shall be for a period of twenty years from the date of acquisition whether the title to the land remains in the acquiring authority or is subsequently transferred to a third person, public or private.

            Acts 1990, No. 37, §1; Acts 1991, No. 745, §1; Acts 2004, No. 919, §1, eff. Aug. 1, 2004; Acts 2008, No. 580, §3; Acts 2013, No. 91, §1, eff. June 4, 2013; Acts 2014, No. 473, §1; Acts 2016, No. 60, §1.



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