Rep. Poliquin says Secretary Zinke Strikes the Right Balance


Presidential or congressional action will be required to "implement" the recommendations, and WELC will challenge any adjustment of the monument's boundaries or management emphasis.

The Bears Ears monument, designated by former President Barack Obama, and the Grand Staircase-Escalante monument, designated by former President Bill Clinton, take up a combined 3.2 million acres in Utah.

Zinke says in his memo to Trump that there are "several billion tons of coal and large oil deposits" within its boundaries. "Nothing is finalized yet, so you can't make assumptions of what will or will not be there".

More than 2.8 million people wrote to Zinke and the Interior Department on this matter, almost all of them urging the administration to preserve protections for these iconic places.

But it said it appreciated Zinke's "thorough review of the recent use of the Antiquities Act in Utah".

Croft thinks Zinke, in his report, fails to acknowledge larger shifts in the agricultural market over the years.

The legal battle over the Grand Canyon involved 818,560 acres-an huge size in 1907, but considerably smaller than the 1.35 million acres set aside for Bears Ears and the 1.8 million acres that became the Grand Staircase Escalante.

Environmental groups, whale watch captains, recreational fishermen and others who pushed for the creation of the monument promised to continue fighting to protect it. Peter Shelley, senior counsel at the Conservation Law Foundation, said Trump doesn't have the authority to modify the monument, which Obama created under the Antiquities Act of 1906.

The Bears Ears Monument has been the most controversial of all of the targeted areas since Zinke's review began.

"We got the monuments, and what do we do?"

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"Our concern is that any time these areas are established, they have prevented access for us", Sanchez said Monday. "And then what happens?"

Instead, it recommends somewhat vague but potentially sweeping changes in how the monuments are managed. "We will not allow these special lands and waters to be handed over to private interests for drilling, commercial fishing, logging, and other extraction".

"The Trump Administration does not comment on leaked documents, especially internal drafts which are still under review by the President and relevant agencies", White House spokeswoman Kelly Love told the Post.

A law signed in 1906 by President Theodore Roosevelt, called the Antiquities Act, gives presidents the authority to establish national monuments without a vote of Congress, something that almost every president has done since then.

Secretary Ryan Zinke is asking President Trump to slash protections from 10 iconic national monuments and significantly shrink at least four of them - Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante in Utah, Gold Butte in Nevada and Cascade Siskiyou in California and Oregon.

While water rights owned by Lincoln County Water District in the Basin and Range monument are still in effect, the sources are not accessible for use based on the land management around them. "Mexican border for national security reasons". The review encompassed 21 monuments, mostly located in the Western United States. He said many also failed to adequately account for local opinion.

"We confirmed that today", Heinrich said.

The memo then calls on the president to change the proclamations establishing the two monuments in New Mexico and the management plans for those sites "to protect objects and prioritize public access; infrastructure upgrades, fix and maintenance; traditional use; tribal cultural use and hunting and fishing rights".

"Congress already set aside these lands eighty years ago for the specific objective of sustainable timber production in the O&C Act, and the president - regardless of party - doesn't have the authority to rewrite the law", said American Forest Resource Council President Travis Joseph. Plus, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act affirms only Congress has the authority to reduce the size of national monuments.

Grazing advocates also welcomed the idea of providing ranchers with more access on five different monuments, including not only Bears Ears, Grand Staircase-Escalante and Gold Butte but also the New Mexico monuments Rio Grande Del Norte and Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks. The Bureau of Land Management describes it as being "dotted by volcanic cones and cut by steep canyons with rivers tucked away in their depths".