(a) Access across Federal lands; application approval
After January 14, 1983, the State or State-owned railroad may request the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture, as appropriate under law, to expeditiously approve an application for a right-of-way in order that the Alaska Railroad or State-owned railroad may have access across Federal lands for transportation and related purposes. The State or State-owned railroad may also apply for a lease, permit, or conveyance of any necessary or convenient terminal and station grounds and material sites in the vicinity of the right-of-way for which an application has been submitted.
(b) Consultative requirements prior to approval of application; conformance of rights-of-way, etc.
Before approving a right-of-way application described in subsection (a) of this section, the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture, as appropriate, shall consult with the Secretary. Approval of an application for a right-of-way, permit, lease, or conveyance described in subsection (a) of this section shall be pursuant to applicable law. Rights-of-way, grounds, and sites granted pursuant to this section and other applicable law shall conform, to the extent possible, to the standards provided in the Act of March 12, 1914 (43
et seq.) and section 1202 (6)
of this title. Such conformance shall not be affected by the repeal of such Act under section 615
of this title.