WASHINGTON (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — The House has approved a bill aimed at resolving a land dispute along the Red River in Texas and Oklahoma.
Republican Rep. Mac Thornberry of Texas sponsored the bill in response to complaints from property owners that the federal Bureau of Land Management was seeking control of a 116-mile stretch of river separating the two states.
The land management agency says the sandy river has eroded and shifted as much as 2 miles over the past century, and dry land where water once flowed belongs to the government.
Property owners disagree and accuse the government of an improper "land grab."
The bill would commission a survey of the disputed area under a method backed by the Supreme Court.
The bill was approved 250-171 Tuesday and now goes to the Senate.
"This bill can finally end the baseless claims the federal government has made over privately owned property along the Red River," said Texas Senator John Cornyn. "Texas families who have lived along the river for generations deserve to know they're protected from a federal land grab."
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