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Arizona State Land Department Commercial Ground Lease Auction

On January 29, 2015, the Arizona State Land Department auctioned a commercial ground lease for 47.32 acres of State Trust land in Lake Havasu City on Pittsburgh Point. The successful bidder was Sammy’s Island LLC. The minimum bid was set at just under $7.1 million and the winning bid for the 38 year lease was $30.2 million.

“This is just one of several leases that we have been working on around Lake Havasu,” said a spokesman for the Land Department, “these are exciting opportunities for the Trust because revenues from this type of activity go directly to the Trust beneficiaries, which in this case include K-12 Education, the Universities, and the School for the Deaf and Blind. Ground leases are paid as yearly rent, and the yearly rent for this property will start at $1.2 million and will rise to about $1.7 million over the term of the 38 year lease.”


The Arizona State Land Department is tasked with the management of State Trust lands granted by the Federal Government to Arizona at the time of its establishment as a territory and upon statehood under the Enabling Act of 1910 for the benefit of certain public institutions. In 1915 Arizona created the Land Department and accepted the responsibility of State Trust land management. Today, the Department controls approximately 9.2 million acres which it manages to produce revenue for the 13 Trust beneficiaries-the largest of which is K-12 education.

Since 2013 the Land Department has generated over $500,000,000 for Trust beneficiaries. The State Land Department continues to utilize over 10 million acres of combined surface and subsurface acres of Trust land to generate revenue for Trust beneficiaries through various economic activities.

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Arizona State Land Department Sells Trust Land to City of Scottsdale for $21.3 Million


Auctioned Land

Nov. 19, 2013-  The Arizona State Land Department auctioned 2,365 acres of State Trust land to the City of Scottsdale for $21.3 million. Scottsdale purchased the land, located south of the Bell Road alignment, between the 120th and 136th street alignments to add to its McDowell Sonoran Preserve.

 “This is one of several significant auctions taking place this year,” Arizona State Land Commissioner Vanessa Hickman said. “Through the Arizona Preserve Initiative, the Land Department has helped Scottsdale add over 15,000 acres to their preserve, resulting in revenues of nearly $250 million for the Trust beneficiaries, the largest being K-12 education. It’s exciting to generate significant revenues for the Trust while also being able to provide for so many acres of open space, so important to our lifestyle and to our many visitors.”

In fiscal year 2012, the Arizona State Land Department generated revenues in excess of $213 million and in fiscal year 2013 revenues exceeded $318 million.

The Arizona State Land Commissioner serves as trustee of over 9.3 million acres of Arizona State Trust land.  Since the State Land Department’s inception, its mission has been to manage the Land Trust and to maximize revenues for its beneficiaries. 

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