Bishop, Chaffetz to hold open house on public lands
Aug 01, 2013 | 2134 views | 0 0 comments | 83 83 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Utah Rep. Rob Bishop and Rep. Jason Chaffetz, along with Grand County Council members, will hold an informal open house on Friday, Aug. 9, to discuss the “Public Lands Initiative,” a proposal to develop a comprehensive federal land management process. Bishop says the initiative provides “a framework for a better and more collaborative process that will give greater certainty to the way public lands are manged and used.”

The public is invited to attend the open house, which is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Grand Center, 182 North 500 West, in Moab.

In developing the public lands initiative, Bishop and his staff have held more than 100 meetings with members of environmental groups, local and state government leaders, oil and gas industry officials and others who are interested in developing a plan to end the ongoing conflict concerning how to manage millions of acres of public lands that have not been designated as national parks, monuments or given other protected status.

Bishop has said he hopes to introduce a federal land bill in Congress later this year.

According to Bishop’s office, approximately 12.7 million acres in Utah are already set aside for national parks or monuments, conservation areas, wilderness or wilderness study areas as well as wild and scenic river corridors and Forest Service roadless areas. Approximately 4.3 million acres are currently leased for oil and gas exploration by the Bureau of Land Management, which means that some 36 percent of the state is off-limits to development while 12 percent is available for oil and gas drilling, according to figures provided by Bishop’s office.

Earlier on Aug. 9, Bishop, Chaffetz and their staff members plan to tour the Sand Flats Recreation Area and other scenic areas near moab with representatives from Grand County, said Melissa Subbotin, a spokeswoman for Bishop.

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