I’m a Utah public lands enthusiast. I’ve enjoyed many adventures on Utah’s spectacular landscapes.
Whatever your political leanings we all love our public lands—including hunters, hikers, rafters, four wheelers, ranchers, wilderness and wildlife advocates, etc. It’s the ultimate nonpartisan issue. Or should be. I’ve never heard anyone say, “I don’t like public lands.”
But be sure of one thing, our public lands remain at great risk. The Trump administration and the top brass at the Department of the Interior are chipping away at our public land’s protections.
The DOI is dispersing the Bureau of Land Management’s top management from Washington, D.C., to western regional offices. Every public lands enthusiast should be alarmed by this. This would further weaken the BLM’s ability to properly manage and protect public lands. The move would give small groups of local politicians unweighted land management influence to the detriment of millions of public-lands-loving Americans.
BLM’s recent opening of the fragile Factory Butte area to unrestricted cross-country motorized use, without public input opportunities, is an example of the BLM acquiescing to a small political group over the public at large. A type of scenario that will be exacerbated when the BLM moves its headquarters west.
Peter Gatch, Park City