School Facilities - Options to Acquire or Lease State Trust Lands
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School Facilities

Options to Acquire or Lease State Trust Lands
from the Department of Natural Resources

Background Information
State trust lands are managed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to benefit specific beneficiaries. Just prior to Washington becoming a state in 1889, Congress passed the Omnibus Enabling Act of 1889 and granted more than 3 million acres of land to Washington to support various public institutions important for the new state. Washington, more than most other western states, has retained ownership of these trust lands over the years to serve as an ongoing source of land-based financial support to the various beneficiaries – including the Common School Trust to support construction of public schools for Kindergarten through Grade 12.

In December 2008, the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Commissioner of Public Lands reported to the Legislature on options for using existing state lands in high growth areas of the state for potential future school sites. The report found that any school district in the state, whether in a high growth area or not, can approach the DNR and discuss the availability of any parcel of trust land within its district for school sites or other related facilities.

For more information:

Options to Acquire or Lease State Trust Lands Memorandum (Word)

Trust Land Transaction Fact Sheet (PDF)

Potential School Sites State Trust Land Study (PDF, 120 pages)

Current DNR Land Transaction Notification Letters
None at this time.

Contact Information
For questions on proposed transactions or to contact DNR’s Asset and Property Management Division please call (360) 902-1600 or e-mail

OSPI contact: Randy Newman, or (360) 725-6267.


   Updated 3/16/2016

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