United States Code
USC most recently checked for updates: Mar 21, 2023
For purposes of this section:
The term “governmental entity” means any agency of the United States, a State, or a unit of local government of a State.
The terms “highly erodible land” and “wetland” have the meanings, respectively, that such terms are given in section 3801 of title 16.
The term “wildlife” means fish or wildlife as defined in section 3371 of title 16.
The term “recreational purposes” includes hunting.
Contracts on loan security properties
Subject to subsection (c), the Secretary may enter into a contract related to real property for conservation, recreation, or wildlife purposes.
The Secretary may enter into a contract under subsection (b) if—
such property is wetland, upland, or highly erodible land;
such property is determined by the Secretary to be suitable for the purposes involved; and
such property secures any loan made under any law administered by the Secretary and held by the Secretary; and
such contract better enables a qualified borrower to repay the loan in a timely manner, as determined by the Secretary.
Terms and conditions
The terms and conditions specified in each such contract shall—
specify the purposes for which such real property may be used;
identify the conservation measures to be taken, and the recreational and wildlife uses to be allowed, with respect to such real property; and
require such owner to permit the Secretary, and any person or governmental entity designated by the Secretary, to have access to such real property for the purpose of monitoring compliance with such contract.
Purchase; limitation upon cancellation or prepayment
Subject to paragraph (2), the Secretary may reduce or forgive the outstanding debt of a borrower—
in the case of a borrower to whom the Secretary has made one or more outstanding loans under laws administered by the Secretary, by canceling that part of the aggregate amount of such outstanding loans that bears the same ratio to such aggregate amount as the number of acres of the real property of the borrower that are subject to the contract bears to the aggregate number of acres securing such loans; or
in any other case, by treating as prepaid that part of the principal amount of a new loan to the borrower issued and held by the Secretary under a law administered by the Secretary that bears the same ratio to such principal amount as the number of acres of the real property of the borrower that are subject to the contract bears to the aggregate number of acres securing the new loan.
The amount so canceled or treated as prepaid pursuant to paragraph (1) shall not exceed—
in the case of a delinquent loan, the value of the land on which the contract is entered into or the difference between the amount of the outstanding loan secured by the land and the value of the land, whichever is greater; or
in the case of a nondelinquent loan, 33 percent of the amount of the loan secured by the land.
Consultations with Director of Fish and Wildlife Service
If the Secretary elects to use the authority provided by this section, the Secretary shall consult with the Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service for purposes of—
selecting real property in which the Secretary may enter into contracts under this section;
formulating the terms and conditions of such contracts; and
enforcing such contracts.
The Secretary, and any person or governmental entity designated by the Secretary, may enforce a contract entered into by the Secretary under this section.
(Pub. L. 87–128, title III, § 349, as added Pub. L. 99–198, title XIII, § 1318(a),
Dec. 23, 1985, 99 Stat. 1530; amended Pub. L. 100–233, title VI, § 612, Jan. 6, 1988, 101 Stat. 1674; Pub. L. 101–624, title XVIII, § 1815, title XXIII, § 2388(j), Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3825, 4053; Pub. L. 104–127, title VI, § 642, Apr. 4, 1996, 110 Stat. 1102; Pub. L. 117–243, § 2(b)(1), Dec. 20, 2022, 136 Stat. 2336.)
cite as: 7 USC 1997