State Trust Land Beneficiaries

The federal Arizona-New Mexico Enabling Act of 1910 and the Arizona Constitution identify several public entities as beneficiaries to receive proceeds from the lease or sale of millions of acres of land set aside for the State of Arizona to manage on the Beneficiaries' behalf. They are:

K-12 Public Education ("Common Schools")

Public education is by far the largest Beneficiary of Trust Land managed by the Department. Congress granted two sections of each township to "common schools" when Arizona became a territory in 1863, and an additional two sections when Arizona became a state in 1912. Today, approximately 8 million of the State Trust's 9.2 million surface acres are designated for K-12 public education.


Through the Arizona Board of Regents, Arizona’s three state universities (Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, and the University of Arizona) are designated Beneficiaries of proceeds from investments of six distinct Trust accounts named at statehood (modern-day names for these accounts are in parentheses): Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges (Colleges of Engineering), Military Institutes (ROTC programs), University Land Code (University of Arizona), Normal Schools (Colleges of Education), University of Arizona 1881 (University of Arizona), School of Mines (University of Arizona School of Mines).

Other Beneficiaries

The remaining six Trust Beneficiaries are the Arizona School for the Deaf and the Blind; the State Legislative, Executive and Judicial Buildings; the Arizona State Hospital in Phoenix; the Arizona Pioneers’ Home in Prescott; the Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections (ADJC); and the Arizona Department of Corrections (ADC). These six Beneficiaries were identified in the Enabling Act of 1910 that was the prelude to Arizona statehood, and each was delegated 100,000 acres, except for the Pioneers’ Home and ADC, each of which were the Beneficiary of 200,000 acres.