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Groups Back Legislation To Help Grand Teton Deal

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Environmental groups say they support legislation being billed as way to help the federal government pay for a significant new addition to Grand Teton National Park.

Federal and state officials agreed last year that the Interior Department will pay $107 million for more than two square miles of Wyoming state land within the boundaries of Grand Teton.

Now, new efforts to reduce the federal debt threaten to hold up the deal, which would take place in four installments from 2012-2015.

Wyoming Republican Rep. Cynthia Lummis has authored a bill to reauthorize the Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act. Before it expired this year, the act enabled the federal government to sell some land and use the proceeds to buy other land.

Groups including the Sierra Club say they support the reauthorization.

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