The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced that the agency is developing the latest edition of the Manual of Instructions for the Survey of the Public Lands of the United States. The Manual describes how cadastral surveys of the public lands are completed in conformance to statutory law. The earliest rules governing the survey of the public lands were issued in manuscript and in printed circulars in 1785.

Additionally, the Manual is intended to balance the printed instructions with current legislation, judicial and administrative decisions, and current surveying practice. Outside the BLM, the primary interest of the Manual is county and local surveyors, attorneys, title-insurance-company personnel, and real estate agents; accordingly, this new edition will include a discussion of the law and policies of surveying and boundaries as they have developed since the last edition in 1973.

"Land surveyors are the first line of protection for private property rights," said Don Buhler, Chief Cadastral Surveyor for the BLM. "Surveys must be legally correct, therefore the Manual is issued to guide land surveyors who exercise a technical responsibility in the execution of cadastral surveys or resurveys."

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