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Shivwits Band of Paiute Indians v. Utah

Citation: 35 ELR 20230
No. No. 03-4274, (10th Cir., 11/10/2005)

The court holds that the state of Utah lacks authority to regulate billboard advertising displays erected by a Native American tribe on land held in trust by the federal government. Section 465 of the Indian Reorganization Act—the statute authorizing acquisition of the land—does not violate the non-delegation doctrine. In addition, the Indian lands exemption in the Quiet Title Act rendered the government immune from questions as to title to the land at issue. Moreover, arguments that the final EA was inadequate and not completed in good faith because it was conducted after the land at issue had been acquired in trust and the leases executed and approved are moot. Nor does the Highway Beautification Act expressly authorize the state to regulate outdoor advertising displays on the land at issue. And allowing the state to exercise control over the land at issue would "threaten Congress' overriding objective of encouraging tribal self-government and economic development." Thus, the state cannot exercise its police power to regulate the land at issue.