Patagonia and the politics of subsidized public lands recreation

Every year the federal government spends millions to support recreation, without earning much revenue from those campers, bikers and hikers. For every dollar that the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management spent on recreation from 2009-13, they took in less than 30 cents… Terry L. Anderson Wall Street Journal Utah Faces Down the Rock-Climbing Industrial Complex: Companies selling […]

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Utah ranchers pushed off public lands by restrictive federal parks, monuments

Just like humans, cattle have a personal bubble – a flight zone. Phillips can prove this to many a camper after trying to move cattle to corrals and finding a camp set up. He has also had cattle spook after hikers appear adventuring through the back country. “They ruined it by making it a monument,” Phillips says. “There are so […]

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New Mexico ranchers fear Democrat monument expansions ‘aimed at pushing them from the land’

But ranchers from some rural communities fear the new designations will amount to another layer of bureaucracy aimed at pushing them from the land. Their concerns mark just the latest battle over public lands in the West, where the federal government already controls millions of acres. Santa Fe New Mexican ALBUQUERQUE — New Mexico’s two U.S. senators have introduced legislation […]

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Too Big: Effort to shrink Grand Staircase/Escalante NM gets bi-partisan support

At 1.88 million acres, Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is larger than the combined footprints of the state’s “Mighty 5” national parks and Cedar Breaks National Monument. That’s too big, according to a resolution approved Wednesday by the Utah Senate after passage last week in the House. HCR12 calls on Utah’s federal delegation to support a reduction or modification of the […]

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Happy New Year: Obama land grabs can be reversed by Congress, Trump Administration

Mr. Obama has repeatedly abused his authority under the Antiquities Act to declare vast new national monuments, including on the high seas. This week’s monument designations have been strongly opposed by state officials and GOP congressional leaders, including the unanimous delegation from Utah. Trump Can Reverse Obama’s Last-Minute Land Grab The White House is trying to lock up millions of […]

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Utah Republicans plan to counteract possible Obama move on Bears Ears

Worried that Obama will aggressively act on his way out the door, opponents like Lee are now gearing up for a protracted fight to amend or repeal the law, and are even vowing to work with the incoming Donald Trump administration to overturn monuments already named by Obama.  They are paying special attention to Obama’s next rumored target for a […]

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Overzealous federal efforts to ‘protect’ lands are counterproductive

In our desperation to save our treasures while something remains to be saved, we on the protectionist side have repeatedly done an end run around the local populations who are most powerfully positioned to protect the land or abuse it. We have avoided the hard, slow, complicated slog of cultivating the hearts and minds of country pragmatists who still have […]

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Bears Ears will not be protected by overrunning it with tourism

Though it aims to protect sacred space and preserve archaeological sites, a monument would actually tame the wild, overrun the spiritual, enforce webs of rules and fees, bring busloads of tourists, trivialize landmarks through ad campaigns, cater to those with the means to recreate, and fine people for straying from a trail. To maintain this regime, management has to partition, […]

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National Monuments: The New Feudalism

In areas designated national monuments, productive activities are heavily restricted or even banned. These are precisely the sorts of restrictions that federal agencies have been prevented from imposing through traditional means. Grinding westerners under the federal boot The national monument designation is a backdoor land grab ANALYSIS/OPINION: The federal government owns an estimated one-third of all the land in the […]

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Proposed Cascade-Siskiyou Monument will devastate local communities

If this recent attempt moves ahead, it will have devastating effects on the local communities. Also keep in mind that over 50,000 of these acres are O&C timber lands. The loss of timber harvests will also have a major effect on all 18 of the O&C counties. With no timber sales, there will also be little if any meaningful timber […]

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