Interior head suggests reducing Bears Ears National Monument

Interior head suggests reducing Bears Ears National Monument”

Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke talks to reporters before departing Kanab Airport on May 10, 2017, in Kanab, Utah.

The recommendation comes as part of an executive order Trump signed in April calling for a review of all national monument designations signed since 1996.

"The review shows that rather than designating an area encompassing nearly 1.5 million acres as a national monument, it would have been more appropriate to identify and separate the areas that have significant objects to be protected" the secretary's report reads.

Despite the almost unanimous sentiment among the general public who commented, Zinke chose to ignore the findings entirely in his official report to the president and instead pointed to the handful of comments received from industry-friendly Utah politicians who oppose Bears Ears to justify his bold recommendations. Obama did so after the failure of the Utah delegation to pass their own legislation to further preserve the federal lands around the Bears Ears region. President Obama designated the 1.3 million acre monument in December.

No president has ever used his authority to eliminate a monument, or to reduce one at the scale proposed by Zinke.

Well, now I think it's safe to say Ryan Zinke has made up his mind about a president's legal authority under the Antiquities Act to redraw the monument boundaries.

In his findings, which he presented to Trump on Saturday, Zinke says that many areas of the monument merit protection, such as areas of importance to tribes for traditional cultural practices, but that those areas should be separated out and the monument should be reduced to the "smallest area compatible with proper care and management of the objects to be protected".

"If the administration moves forward with that plan, this decision will be challenged in court and if they put this plan before Congress I will fight him every step of the way", said Udall, who called Zinke's "recommendations and the lack of transparency leading up to this point ... deeply disrespectful and insulting".

Zinke said he will ask Congress to authorize the tribes co-manage the land.

Because of public pressure from Republicans in Utah, Trump expedited the review of Bears Ears.

"That's a slap in the face of Native Americans", said Mark Maryboy, a former San Juan County commissioner. This maneuver clearly exposes the actual motivation behind the review: to erode protections for these lands and open them up for extractive degradation and private profit. The administration's recommendations are directly against the wishes of the overwhelming majority of Americans - and also in direct conflict with the Antiquities Act and the Wilderness Act - making a mockery of the claimed public process and the good faith of these recommendations.

The review also targets five marine monuments in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.

Instead of the monument designation, which prevents a range of development, Zinke said some of the sprawling, 1.3 million-acre site should be designated for conservation or recreation.

The former Montana congressman's decision was awaited as an early test of how the administration will treat public lands issues, in this case balancing the interests of Native Americans, who consider Bears Ears sacred land, and other locals who oppose tough restrictions on other activities. The Republican-controlled Congress has failed to approve a significant public lands bill in recent years, but Zinke said that was because of veto threats by Obama.

Zinke said he will give a final recommendation, with specifics regarding acreage, when he has completed his review of the other monuments, as directed by the presidential executive order.

Associated Press writes Brady McCombs in Salt Lake City contributed to this story.

Be Civil - It's OK to have a difference in opinion but there's no need to be a jerk.

Like this


12 June 2017
After UK Election, The Only 'Certainty' In Britain Is Uncertainty
The deal sits uneasily with some Conservatives because of the DUP's opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. The exact contours of a potential Conservative-DUP deal were not yet known.

12 June 2017
Uber's Travis Kalanick may take break from company
On the agenda at Sunday's meeting were a possible leave of absence for Mr Kalanick and potentially parting ways with Mr Michael. One such employee, Susan Fowler , wrote an incendiary blog post in February on workplace conditions at Uber .

11 June 2017
Cosby's chief accuser denies romance before alleged assault
Bill Cosby is accompanied by actress Sheila Frazier (l.) and Frazier's husband, John Atchison, a celebrity hairstylist. . On Tuesday, Constand testified , "I was having to recall a lot of facts", adding that "it was very overwhelming".

10 June 2017
Qatari crisis could spell new trouble for embattled Hamas
The state of Israel is more than open to such cooperation. "The likelihood of Hamas getting anything meaningful is diminished". Novik said that even if Hamas survives a Qatari withdrawal of financial support, "it will be a completely different Hamas".

08 June 2017
SpaceX Dragon all set for 11th resupply mission to International Space Station
On this week's supply run to the International Space Station, SpaceX will launch a Dragon capsule that's already traveled there. If the launch is scrubbed, the next launch opportunity is 5:07 p.m. on Saturday, with NASA TV coverage starting at 4:30 p.m.

08 June 2017
Libraries have Summer Reading Program
Programs in Pembroke will be held at 10:30 a.m.at the Bryan County Elementary School Cafeteria, 250 Payne Drive. At registration, participants will receive the program guidelines, a reading log and a schedule of events .

07 June 2017
Apple's new iMacs have better screens, USB-C, and VR support
The entry-level iMac embedded with AMD Radeon Pro 500 will fetch $1,099 which will raise up to $2,299 for the 27.5-inch 5K iMac. Apple said the computer is the most powerful Mac it has ever built, with the latest and most powerful processors on the market.

07 June 2017
BREAKING Third London Bridge Attacker named as Youssef Zaghba
Collina said that she spoke with him two days before the London Bridge attacks and now realises that "it was a goodbye call". Questions are being raised about whether British police missed crucial warning signs that could have prevented the attack.

06 June 2017
Mark III - ISRO's most powerful rocket successfully launched
If launched successfully, "Fat Boy" will be the heaviest satellite into orbit by an Indian rocket till date. In 2014, Isro had flown a similar rocket, without a cryogenic engine but with a 3.7-tonne payload.

06 June 2017
Who will Ohio State hire to replace Thad Matta?
ESPN reports Matta wants to keep coaching, although there are health issues he's battled. Gene Smith said that the search for a new basketball coach will begin immediately.