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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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Proceedings for acquiring title
§ 51. Proceedings for acquiring title. 1. Whenever the United States
is desirous of purchasing or acquiring the title to or any interest any
tract, piece or parcel of land within the boundaries of this state,
except within the Adirondack park as defined by section 9-0101 of the
environmental conservation law, where a special act of the legislature
shall be required, for any of the purposes aforesaid, and cannot agree
with the owner or owners thereof as to the purchase thereof, or if the
owners of any of said lands are unknown, persons under the age of
eighteen years, of unsound mind, or non-residents, or if for any other
reason a perfect title can not be made to said lands, or any part
thereof, the United States, by any agent authorized under the hand and
seal of any head of an executive department of the government of the
United States, is authorized to apply to the supreme court of the state,
in and for the county within which the said lands are situated, or to
the district court of the United States in the judicial district in
which said lands are situated, to have the said lands acquired pursuant
to the provisions of the eminent domain procedure law, for the use and
benefit of the United States.

2. At any time during the existence of a state of war between the
United States and any foreign power, or during the existence of a
national emergency or limited national emergency involving the defense
of the United States as proclaimed by the president of the United
States, the United States may, by any agent duly authorized under the
hand and seal of any head of an executive department of the government
of the United States, for the purpose described in section fifty of this
act, select, locate, enter upon and acquire any rights, easements or
interest in property, either in fee or for the term of one year or
longer, within this state. This shall include lands owned by the state
of New York, the provisions of any other statute to the contrary
notwithstanding, except those the alienation of which is prohibited by
the constitution of the state of New York. Said agent shall from time to
time cause to be made, accurate maps of such lands which, or rights and
easements in which, he shall determine to take, which maps shall be
certified by him and shall specify with respect to each parcel of land
whether the whole title thereof is to be taken and if the whole is not
to be taken, the rights, easements or interests therein and for what
period of time, that the same is taken. Said maps shall also show the
names of the reputed owners of such lands and shall contain a
description of the lands to be acquired and shall be filed in the office
of the secretary of state and a duplicate thereof shall be filed in the
office of the clerk or register of the county wherein said lands are
situated. Said agent shall thereupon serve upon the owners of any real
property so acquired a notice of the filing and date of filing of such
maps, which notice shall specifically describe that portion of the
property belonging to such owners which has been so acquired and what
estate therein has been taken. If said agent shall not be able to serve
such notice upon the owner personally within this state after making
efforts so to do which in his judgment are under the circumstances
deemed reasonable and proper, he may serve the same by filing with the
clerk or register of the county wherein said lands are situated. From
the time of the service of such notice, the entry upon and the
acquisition by the United States of said estate in the property
described for any of the purposes above mentioned shall be deemed
complete and thereupon such property or said limited estate or interest
therein so taken shall become the property of the United States. Such
notice so served shall be conclusive evidence of an entry and
acquisition by the United States. Said agent may cause a copy of such
notice or notices with an affidavit or affidavits of due service thereof
on such owner or on the county clerk or register as the case may be, to
be recorded in the books used for recording deeds in the office of the
clerk or register of the county in which such lands are situated and
such records shall be evidence of the due service thereof and of the
title of the United States to the property so acquired. Said agent shall
have the power after the filing of such map and service of such notice
to fix and determine with each and any of the respective owners of such
lands upon the fair value thereof and may agree upon a price to be paid
therefor by the United States and accepted by such owners respectively.
In case such agent shall not agree with any owner or owners of such
lands so acquired, then said agent shall proceed forthwith to determine
the amount of compensation to be paid for the property so taken and
acquired by a proceeding taken under the provisions of this act and the
eminent domain procedure law. Said proceeding for the purpose of
determining such compensation shall be instituted and maintained in the
name of the United States of America. No petition shall be necessary to
institute such proceeding and the supreme court shall upon application
of the United States and on ten days' notice to the owners of the
property or, if they be unknown, to the county clerk, determine the
compensation which ought justly to be made to the owners of the land or
rights therein as provided in the eminent domain procedure law. The
compensation awarded by the supreme court shall be paid by the United
States. The eminent domain procedure law shall apply to all proceedings
hereunder except in so far as the provisions of this act are
inconsistent therewith.

3. The people of the state of New York may at any time be joined as
party defendant in any proceeding instituted for the acquisition of any
lands for any of the purposes aforesaid in which the people of this
state have or may have any right, title or interest, and any awards
which may be made to the people of the state of New York shall be paid
into the state treasury.