The online headline "Westerners fear Obama preparing monuments land grab" (sltrib.com , May 2) misrepresents both the content of the story and the mood of millions of Utahns.
Polls right here in Salt Lake City consistently show open space as a public priority. Studies performed by the Outdoor Industry Association show that Utah profits from its wilderness areas to the tune of $5.8 billion per year and 65,000 jobs.
Thomas Burr’s reporting tells us that Utah’s Navajo are lobbying for national monument status in southern Utah, and that Utah Rep. Jim Matheson has a bill before congress to preserve 13,000 acres of Wasatch wild space. Clearly there is broad and active support for conservation initiatives in Utah and in the west.
So, while it’s true that Orrin Hatch and Rob Bishop "fear" federal action, it’s equally true that millions of Utahns welcome protection for our precious public lands, and would argue in favor of a national monument designation for these fragile wild areas.
Please hear our voices, too, when you talk about the west.
Salt Lake City
Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.