The Division of Lands and Waterways has both Endowment-related and regulatory responsibilities. The Division includes staff in 10 Supervisory Areas statewide as well as staff that oversee various programs out of the IDL Boise Staff Office.
Endowment Leasing Programs
More than 500 cottage site leases located at Priest Lake and Payette Lake are managed by the Department. Lessees are allowed to build private residences on some of the most beautiful waterfront and secondary lake properties in the State of Idaho.
The Commercial Lease Program involves a broad range of leasing scenarios including energy resources (e.g. wind energy and geothermal); communication sites; retail/office; recreation, industrial facilities; and military facilities. Energy resource leases, especially wind energy facility leases and retail/office leases are expected growth areas for the Department.
GRAZING LEASES: The Department manages more than 1,200 grazing leases that cover almost 300,000 acres of timberland and 1.5 million acres of rangeland located primarily across the southern two thirds of Idaho. These leases contribute approximately 260,000 AUMs of forage to livestock operations each year.
FARMING LEASES: Most of the original farming land owned by the endowments was sold during the early portion of the 1900s. What remains is a small portfolio of farming leases that total approximately 20,000 acres. Crops currently grown on state endowment trust lands include sugar, beets, corn, onions, potatoes, barley, hops, dry beans and wheat.
CONSERVATION LEASES: Until the adoption of the State Board of Land Commissioners' Asset Management in 2007, the "conservation" asset type was not formally recognized by the Department. Since that time and based on recent administrative rule changes, the Department does accept applications for conservation use and continues to manage a small portfolio of conservation leases.
The Mineral Lease program manages almost 200 leases across the state which cover more than 40,000 acres. Minerals extracted from state endowment trust lands include phosphate, sand and gravel, decorative stone, garnets, clay and cinders.
Resource Protection and Assistance Programs
The Navigable Waters Program regulates encroachments and activities on, in or above the navigable lakes in the State of Idaho. This program also manages the beds and banks lying below the ordinary high water mark of the state's navigable rivers and streams. In total these lands are managed for the public's benefit as public trust lands.
The State Board of Land Commissioners acts as the Idaho Oil and Gas Commission and regulates the exploration, drilling and production of oil and gas resources. Wellhead activities are monitored to ensure that environmental damage does not occur during drilling and operation states.
The Mining Regulatory program regulates surface mining and dredge/placer mining on all state, private and federal lands in the State of Idaho. Mining plans and reclamation bonds are required prior to the start of mining. Plans are reviewed and approved in coordination with other state and federal agencies.
The Abandoned Mines Lands Program provides financial and technical assistance to land owners across the State of Idaho with abandoned mine issues. Public safety and environmental protection are the focus of this program which is funded by a portion of the Mine License Tax.