OCTOBER TERM, 2018
NOTE: Where it is feasible, a syllabus (headnote) will be released, as is
being done in connection with this case, at the time the opinion is issued.
The syllabus constitutes no part of the opinion of the Court but has been
prepared by the Reporter of Decisions for the convenience of the reader.
See United States v. Detroit Timber & Lumber Co., 200 U. S. 321, 337.
SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
STURGEON v. FROST, IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS
ALASKA REGIONAL DIRECTOR OF THE NATIONAL
PARK SERVICE, ET AL.
CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR
THE NINTH CIRCUIT
No. 17949. Argued November 5, 2018Decided March 26, 2019
The Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) set
aside 104 million acres of federally owned land in Alaska for preser-
vation purposes. With that land, ANILCA created ten new national
parks, monuments, and preserves (areas known as "conservation sys-
tem units"). 16 U. S. C. 3102(4). And in sketching those units'
boundary lines, Congress made an uncommon choiceto follow natu-
ral features rather than enclose only federally owned lands. It thus
swept in a vast set of so-called inholdingsmore than 18 million
acres of state, Native, and private land. Had Congress done nothing
more, those inholdings could have become subject to many National
Park Service rules, as the Service has broad authority under its Or-
ganic Act to administer both lands and waters within parks across
the country. 54 U. S. C. 100751. But Congress added Section
103(c), the provision principally in dispute in this case. Section
103(c)'s first sentence states that "[o]nly" the "public lands"defined
as most federally owned lands, waters, and associated interests
within any system unit's boundaries are "deemed" a part of that unit.
16 U. S. C. 3103(c). The second sentence provides that no state, Na-
tive, or private lands "shall be su