Author, Speaker, Instructor, Radio Host
my answer to a recent email....
Can the federal government own/ lease land and define how the land is used?
Article 1, Section 8, they may purchase (not lease) if by the consent of the State's legislature, and for the purpose of needful buildings which typically are facilities related to military or foreign trade.
Can the federal government take land from states and make them federal parks?
No. Unconstitutional. As previously stated, Article I, Section 8 requires all federal lands to either be created by constitutional means (i.e. Washington D.C.) or by the purchase, with the consent of the State legislature, for the purpose of needful buildings (buildings that enable the federal government to carry out constitutionally authorized powers).
Could the states challenge this authority and take back their land?
Yes. Kick them out and nullify any federal claims that are unconstitutional. The problem is, we have a federal government that thinks it is a national government and that it can push the States around any way it wants.
Really want to understand if the government can legislate how land is used by states?
No, they cannot. State land usage is only a State concern.
Douglas V. Gibbs