How national monument designation could harm Bears Ears antiquities

Posted by in Antiquities Act, Government Overreach, Native Americans
Supporters of the proposed Bears Ears National Monument paint a vivid picture of ATVs running over ancient pottery, tourists etching initials into petroglyphs, and archaeologists digging up Native American burial grounds.

While there is no denying the sad reality of such activities in the past, San Juan County Navajos feel that public education campaigns and federal laws are now effective at protecting these invaluable cultural resources.

What does concern them, however, is the likelihood that a national monument designation would bring flocks of tourists to the area, putting cliff dwellings, rock art, prehistoric villages and sacred sites at risk as never before.

Federal law and public opinion have come a long way on this subject since the turn of the 20th century. The late 1800s and early 1900s saw Native American graves desecrated and ancient ruins destroyed. President Theodore Roosevelt recognized this and was instrumental in passing the first comprehensive legislation protecting our nation’s cultural resources. Since that time, public education campaigns and federal laws have evolved to prevent such travesties.

Bears Ears monument advocates say a designation would heighten the protection of the area’s cultural resources through laws and additional enforcement, but in reality it could have the opposite effect. A national monument designation does not bring with it any additional special protections. The area is already protected.

What would change, however, is the number of hikers, campers, and tourists that visit the area. This increased traffic would put the cultural resources of the area at an increased risk of destruction and desecration – especially considering that the federal government can’t afford to provide additional law enforcement to the area.

Federal land management agencies are strapped for cash. The National Park Service has a deferred maintenance backlog of nearly $12 billion – an amount five times that of its latest budget from Congress. This total consists of all the maintenance projects that were not completed on schedule and therefore have been put off or delayed. The Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service aren’t doing much better, as they have a combined backlog of almost $6 billion.

Whether the proposed Bears Ears National Monument would be managed by one or a combination of these federal agencies, the additional enforcement promoted by its advocates is not financially feasible.

San Juan County Navajos understand these realities and oppose a national monument designation. Not only would a designation do nothing more to preserve the land they call sacred, but a lack of law enforcement would put their cultural resources at new risk. The creation of a national monument would upset a system that Utah Navajos believe already protects the land and their history.

To learn more about the five most important laws protecting Native American artifacts, archaeological sites and sacred places, click the links below:

Antiquities Act of 1906

National Historic Preservation Act of 1966

American Indian Religious Freedom Act of 1978

Archaeological Resources Protection Act of 1979

Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1991

Reposted by  6/16/16

America’s greatest environmental threat–the EPA

Posted by in EPA, Federal Regulations, Government Run Amok

June 15, 2016

Protecting the Nation’s Environment From the EPA

A victory for property rights and individual liberty came via the unanimous Supreme Court decision earlier this month against EPA’s ability to control the “environment” on private property—though their use of wetlands “jurisdictional determinations” under the Clean Water Act. The high court’s opinion states that land owners are now able to challenge government agencies that attempt to assert control over the environment of private property before any permitting process by the owner begins—versus after the owners expenditure of time, effort and expense to obtain a permit. Furthermore, this court’s decision will limit the government’s ability to restrict land owners activities through the application of EPA’s “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule issued last year.

This is the second major SCOTUS decision this year to go against the EPA—the other being the stay issued in February against EPA’s Clean Power Plan. Compared to previous administrations, this EPA appears to be spending way too much time in court defending its actions, and not nearly enough time effectively protecting the nation’s environment. Some of the agency’s actions, or inactions, have resulted in environmental damage. Two glaring examples are last year’s contamination of Colorado’s Animas River drinking water supply, and the ongoing lead contamination of drinking water in Flint, Michigan.

Then there is the fallout from EPA’s regulatory agenda—particularly the Clean Power Plan—their crown jewel of carbon emissions rulemaking. Although the CPP was stayed, EPA officials are not deterred and are now moving ahead with key components of the plan, particularly in those 17 states lead by democrat governors. The EPA may be flagrantly violating the law by ignoring the Supreme Court ruling on the CPP. According to the electric utility industry, 30 states, and their state agencies, all of whom are suing to eliminate the plan—EPA is absolutely in violation.

There is also demonstrated collusion between EPA employees and outside environmental interests. FOIA requests and legal depositions have revealed a pattern of illicit email trails and phone calls between EPA officials and radical environmental groups. In some cases the outside groups have actually “co-authored” EPA regulations—creating a circus out of federal agency rulemaking—which is supposed to be based on transparent public participation and not “insider trading” by the environmental movement.

For example, a considerable amount of collusion with outsiders is known to have occurred while EPA was crafting the Clean Power Plan. The evidence includes a tranche of emails discovered on a private email account that indicate outside environmental interests heavily influenced EPA policy on regulating coal-fired power plants. Other EPA collaboration with outsiders include its former Administrator, Lisa Jackson, who in 2010 resigned after being caught using a private email account to correspond with environmental activists about EPA activities.

Other email trails indicate that EPA, for several years, had been colluding with environmentalists opposed to the Pebble Partnership developing a major copper-gold deposit in southwest Alaska. During verbal discovery in March in the Pebble case, an EPA employee, Mr. Phil North, freely admitted that he was providing outside environmental groups unprecedented access to the EPA decision making process involving the Pebble lease—which is on state, not federal land. Not surprisingly, the agency’s regional administrator for Alaska testified to a congressional committee that he had not read the deposition and was not willing to look into the matter further. Nevertheless, the U.S. is now facing the possibility of a lawsuit because Pebble’s parent company, Northern Alliance is Canadian and is protected under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Then there is the destruction of federal-state partnerships that have been built up over the years, caused by states lack of confidence in EPA actions. For example, strident EPA rulemaking has resulted in more states going to court to stop promulgation of blanket federal regulations that are of questionable benefit to states. These regulations include hydraulic fracturing, methane emissions, and mandated ozone levels related to energy development, manufacturing and industrial activity—all above and beyond the Clean Power Plan.

Other legal challenges to EPA include the 27 states that have sued to block the EPA’s Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule, which dramatically expands Federal authority over local construction activities, including energy projects, nationwide. In the East, 21 states sued EPA over its Chesapeake Bay cleanup plan, asserting that the plan represents “…the culmination of EPA’s decade-long attempt to control exactly how states achieve federal water quality requirements (under the Clean Water Act), and marks the beginning of the end of meaningful state participation in water pollution regulation.” In the West, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico will see EPA in court over the agency’s disastrous accidental heavy metal sludge contamination of the Animas River that has affected the drinking water of three states and the Navajo Indian Reservation.

Clearly, this EPA has continued unabated to exert unprecedented “environmental control” over the air, land, and water of the U.S. using numerous unpopular rules and regulations. The continued overregulation and outside collusion require ever greater amounts of EPA’s time in court to answer for their actions—ostensibly leaving less time for environmental protection responsibilities—if they were ever so inclined. In short, their actions are threatening to unravel the long-established, important, and legitimate fabric of environmental protection developed since the agency’s founding almost 50 years ago. What greater irony is there when the environmental stewardship of the several states needs to be legally protected from the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

Reposted by  6/14/16

Utah families say ‘NO’ to economically devastating national monuments

Posted by in Federal Overreach, Land Grabs, Public Lands
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June 14, 2016

A Bears Ears monument would be federal overreach

By Orrin Hatch


Orrin Hatch, Utah’s Senior Senator

as published by Salt Lake Tribune

Anyone who has witnessed the pristine perfection of a mountain lake or the sublime desolation of a sandstone desert can attest to the diversity and grandeur of Utah’s natural landscapes. This month, I had the opportunity to see once again the majesty of our lands up close as I toured Utah’s Mighty Five National Parks in commemoration of the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary. My visit to southern Utah reaffirmed my commitment to preserving our state’s natural treasures while ensuring that Utahns have a voice in the management of our lands.

Each year, the number of tourists visiting Utah’s national parks grows, and it grows for good reason: The Mighty Five are home to some of the best recreational opportunities in the world. As I hiked the Narrows with Superintendent Jeff Bradybaugh in Zion, I was reminded why our state is widely regarded as an outdoorsman’s paradise. As I toured Capitol Reef’s abundant fruit orchards with Superintendent Leah McGinnis, I was stunned by the variety of Utah’s many landscapes. And as I walked through Canyonlands and took in the scenery at Arches and Bryce Canyon, I was left breathless by some of the most panoramic views I have ever seen.

On this trip, I was also able to visit with families across southern and eastern Utah to discuss issues of particular concern to our rural residents, including access to quality health care. Many people living in remote areas of Utah have difficulty finding adequate care because they live so far away from the nearest hospital. To address this problem, I have worked tirelessly to ensure that our rural communities have greater access to high quality medical services. My legislative efforts in Congress have benefitted medical facilities such as Garfield Memorial Hospital in Panguitch and the Kazan Memorial Clinic in Escalante — two exemplary rural health centers. During my trip, I was able to tour both hospitals, where I talked to local residents who told me just how vital these centers are to the health of their family and loved ones.

Another issue of pressing concern to Utahns — and indeed, to many Americans throughout the Mountain West — is the ongoing debate over management of federal lands. I am wholly committed to protecting our state’s natural wonders, including national parks like the Mighty Five. But I believe Utahns should have a say in how we protect our public lands.

During my journey, I visited Bears Ears, the site of a proposed national monument. The area surrounding the stunning Bears Ears formation is, without a doubt, a beautiful part of our state, rich with history and cultural significance. But these are far from the only features of the area that matter to those in eastern Utah who have lived on this land for generations and who rely on its resources for their livelihoods.

A unilateral designation by President Obama of a national monument around Bears Ears would represent federal overreach. It would cut out of the decision-making process the local communities that know the land best. And in the single stroke of a pen, it would put Washington bureaucrats in a position to impose onerous burdens over a vast 1.9 million acres, severely curtailing the way of life of so many of our fellow Utahns.

Out-of-state interests advocating for unilateral presidential action argue that a monument designation is the only means of protecting the Bears Ears area. But this argument is plainly false. All of us want to ensure that Bears Ears is protected not just for today’s Utahns, but also for generations to come. Where we differ is how best to accomplish this goal.

Utah’s elected leaders in Congress firmly believe we need a more collaborative approach to land management that will provide the kind of flexibility that past monument designations have ignored. For the last several years, our state’s congressional delegation, under the leadership of House Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop and Congressman Jason Chaffetz, have worked to develop a comprehensive land-use proposal for our public lands in eastern Utah. This Public Lands Initiative would conserve four times as much land as the proposed monument designation and would carefully tailor the protections for each individual tract of land, rather than prescribing an inefficient and burdensome one-size-fits-all monument designation.


I’m encouraged by the tremendous support we have received from state and local leaders, members of the Navajo Tribe, ranchers, outdoorsmen, and all of the various Utah stakeholders that know best how to manage the land. In light of this broad-based support, I urge the Obama administration to partner with us to support this important Initiative that will not only protect Utah’s natural wonders, but also empower those Utahns who depend on our public lands.

Sen. Orrin G. Hatch is Utah’s senior senator.

Why has BLM created a spy division headed by an ‘arrogant bully?’

Posted by in Bureau of Land Management, Federal militarism, Government Run Amok

June 13, 2016

Widely criticized BLM security agent gets promoted

by Thomas Mitchell

as published by Elko Daily Free Press

Thomas Mitchell

No bureaucratic bungling shall go unrewarded.

Be it at the State Department, Veterans Affairs, Internal Revenue Service, the Justice Department, Immigration or the Bureau of Land Management.

The man who was in charge of security for the BLM during the botched Bundy ranch cattle roundup two years ago — which resulted in the agency spending $1 million to round up a couple hundred head of cattle, only to release them when confronted by armed supporters of the rancher — has been promoted to a newly created position.

Dan Love, who was in charge of BLM security forces in Nevada and Utah, will now serve as the BLM’s agent in charge of security, protection and intelligence nationwide.

The intelligence part of the job reportedly includes gathering information on emerging threats, such as from websites and online social media.

Why a land management agency should have what amounts to its own law enforcement division is a question to begin with. Even the Nevada Test Site uses private security firms. Aren’t actual law enforcement agencies such as the FBI and U.S. marshals, as well as local police and sheriff agencies, sufficient to protect these public servants?

As for intelligence? Why does a federal land agency need a spy?

Gov. Brian Sandoval chastised the BLM at the time of the Bundy ranch invasion for creating an “atmosphere of intimidation.”

“Due to the roundup by the BLM, my office has received numerous complaints of BLM misconduct, road closures and other disturbances,” Sandoval said in a statement at the time. “I have recently met with state legislators, county officials and concerned citizens to listen to their concerns. I have expressed those concerns directly to the BLM.”

He said most disturbing to him was the BLM’s establishment of a “First Amendment Area,” where any protests were supposed to be contained, calling that a trampling of Nevadans’ fundamental rights under the U.S. Constitution.

“No cow justifies the atmosphere of intimidation which currently exists nor the limitation of constitutional rights that are sacred to all Nevadans,” he said. “The BLM needs to reconsider its approach to this matter and act accordingly.”

Though he said rancher Cliven Bundy must be held accountable for defying federal court orders and grazing cattle on federal land without proper permits, then-Sheriff Doug Gillespie was critical of the tactics and behavior of the BLM security forces for creating a situation that threatened to turn into a bloodbath.

Speaking at an editorial board of the Las Vegas morning newspaper a couple of months after the roundup, Gillespie said he had a tense meeting with some of Bundy’s sons a few weeks before the agents moved in with armed vehicles, heavy weapons, snipers and attack dogs. He feared emotions would boil over.

“I came back from that saying, ‘This is not the time to do this,’” he told the editors. “They (the BLM) said, ‘We do this all the time. We know what we’re doing. We hear what you’re saying, but we’re moving forward.’”

He noted that a video of one of Bundy’s sons being Tasered went viral on the Internet, prompting self-styled patriots and militia to pour into the ranch, an outcome for which the BLM was unprepared.

Gillespie added, “You’ll have a hard time convincing me that one person’s drop of blood is worth any one of those cows,” adding that the BLM had no place to take the cattle it had gathered anyway.

Two years later, Bundy, four of his sons and 14 others are being held without bail on federal charges growing out of the standoff.

Love’s handling of the Bundy situation is hardly the first criticism leveled at his methods.

In an article in the Salt Lake City Tribune in October 2014, rural Utah sheriffs described Love as Public Enemy No. 1.

“Elected law enforcement officers from Nephi to Blanding call him an arrogant and dishonest bully who has little regard for local authority and dodges accountability, derailing a collaborative approach to police work on the state’s federal lands,” the article declares.

According to the Reno newspaper, Love also has a penchant for demanding pampering for himself and his agents. Before the 2015 Burning Man festival in Black Rock, Love told festival organizers his staff would require a separate compound with amenities such as flushing toilets, washers and dryers, and 24-hour access to ice cream.

The cost was estimated to be $1 million. The BLM backed off after being widely ridiculed.

That’s how to mount the ladder of success in a bureaucracy.

Reposted by  6/13/16

U.S. Forest Service trashes trails, wrecks environment to block access to private property

Posted by in Environment, Forest Service, Government Run Amok

June 12, 2106

Forest Service Demolishes Access to Private Property

Forest Service Demolishes Access to Private Property

by Shari Dovale
as published by Redoubt News


Trail to Bedrock Gulch. Photo: NWGPA

A planned outing to claims along Bedrock Gulch and Eagle Creek by the Northwest Gold Prospectors Association (NWGPA) turned ugly last weekend. Their trails had been maliciously blocked by hundreds of downed trees and cement barricades.

The NWGPA is a club with over 200 members. The members pull their resources and buy legal claims to share throughout the year. Their first outing of the year was planned for last weekend. They intended to tour their claims, showing new members where they can access, and the rules to abide by.

However, they found that the Forest Service had blocked access to at least four of their claims through the intentional destruction of the roads. Slash, downed trees, and even hauling in 3-foot by up to 12-foot concrete traffic barriers, piled to the point that even the deer and elk cannot cross through.


East Fork of Eagle Creek Road. Photo: NWGPA

Trees were also downed and hauled next to the river, and it seems that the work may have even gone into the water.

Remember that the EPA is coming down hard on anyone that they determine has affected the waters of the United States, through the Clean Water Act. Joe Robertson was found guilty of these violations for putting a pond on his property, affecting only one-tenth of an acre, sixty miles from any navigable water.



Bedrock Gulch. Photo: NWGPA

However, as you can see from the pictures, the Forest Service has intentionally plundered the area next to Eagle Creek, which leads to the Coeur d’Alene River. How is it that they are allowed to get away with this? Will the EPA even blink when it comes to the government’s intentional violations?

While checking their claims near Bedrock Gulch, members of the Club found what was professed to be a “fire break”. Now, I am not an expert, but maybe someone can look at these pictures and explain to me how this is normal procedure to stop a fire. Massive slash and trees, enough to block all wildlife from crossing the road, seems to be more in line with starting a fire than stopping one.

Another question is how many thousand$ of dollar$ did the Forest Service spend to accomplish this devastation? This appears to be a complete misuse of public funds.


East Fork of Eagle Creek Road. Historically, the only road that led from Montana to Murray, Idaho. Photo: NWGPA

The Prospectors in the NWGPA own more than a dozen claims. So far, they have verified that four of the claims have had this harsh destruction to block their access. They have planned another outing this weekend, and hope to have access for their members and guests to some of their claims.

Redoubt News will be bringing you updates as we follow this story.

Reposted by  6/12/16

Utah Navajos plead, “Don’t take our land…not again.”

Posted by in Federal Overreach, Land Grabs, Native Americans

June 11, 2016

The federal government is poised to take these lands out of the hands of the Navajos who have depended upon the Bears Ears region for survival for centuries.

Produced by Utah’s premiere Liberty-minded think tank, Sutherland Institute, this video documents the words of the grassroots Navajos in San Juan County, home of Obama’s proposed 2 million acre “Bears Ears National Monument.” Promoted by out-of-state environmentalist groups and left-leaning members of some other tribes, most of which are not native to San Juan County, the federal government is poised to take these lands out of the hands of the Navajos who have accessed resources, cared for the lands, wildlife, and vegetation, and depended upon the Bears Ears region for survival for centuries.

Please magnify their voices by sharing this via social media and emails.

Reposted by  6/11/16

“Green” energy leading the West into era of Blackouts

Posted by in Energy Policy, Energy Poverty, Green Energy

June 11, 2016

Obama legacy will be power blackouts

President Obama is burning his so-called bridges to a “green energy” future that will leave America’s families and industries powerlessly impoverished.

Any notions that generously subsidized solar and wind will significantly compensate capacity losses from shuttered coal plants and overregulated oil and natural gas suppliers are scientifically and economically delusional.

And as for any prospects that truly clean non-fossil nuclear or hydropower can make up the slack, forget about that too.

Let’s start with some simple arithmetic. If you have heard some really exciting news that the Obama Administration has already doubled the amount of total U.S. energy derived from “renewable alternative” sources (solar, wind, and biofuels), that would be true.

Thanks largely to $150 billion in generous federal subsidies, combined total renewables (not including hydropower) grew from supplying slightly more than 2% of our “primary fuel” (including electricity) to a whopping 4% today.

Meanwhile over the same period, the total increase of non-subsidized oil and gas also doubled, but added eight times more energy than the total growth of wind, solar, and biofuels combined. Oil and gas now supply about 63% of all U.S. primary fuel. Coal provides another 19%.

BilLGatesBill Gates, a leading “green energy proponent,” candidly discussed false industry narrative in a November 2015 Atlantic magazine article titled “We Need an Energy Miracle.”

Referring to “self-defeating claims of some clean-energy enthusiasts,” he said, “They have this statement that the cost of solar photovoltaic is the same as hydrocarbons. And that’s one of those misleadingly meaningless statements.

What they mean is that at noon in Arizona, the cost of that kilowatt-hour is the same as a hydrocarbon kilowatt-hour. But it doesn’t come at night, it doesn’t come after the sun hasn’t shone, so the fact that in that one moment you reach parity, so what?”

As Gates pointed out, “The reading public, when they see things like that, they underestimate how hard this [economical energy technology] thing is. So false solutions like divestment or ‘Oh, it’s easy to do’ hurt our ability to fix the problems. Distinguishing a real solution from a false solution is actually very complicated.”

Google learned the same very hard lesson. In 2007 the company KFinitiated an ambitious program known as RE<C (renewable energy less than coal) to invest in promising renewable energy technologies with the goal of generating gigawatt-scale electricity more cheaply than coal plants within years rather than decades.

Included were a wide range of innovative self-assembling wind turbine towers, drilling systems for geothermal energy, and solar thermal power systems, which capture the sun’s energy as heat.

Google shut down RE<C in 2011 after determining that it could not meet its target.

Google’s engineers also concluded that even their most optimistic cost-reduction scenarios for solar power, wind power, energy storage, and electric vehicles would have little climate impact. They appropriately noted that today’s renewable sources are limited by suitable geography and intermittent nature.

Wind farms, for example, make economic sense only in certain parts of the nation. Google’s best-case renewable supply models indicated that fossil fuel use would continue to be necessary for electricity generation, transportation, agriculture, and construction.

Bill Gates is honest about the dishonesty of alarmist climate claims, pointing out that global heating levels have not matched model predictions — with much uncertainty on both the “good and bad side.” He admits, “By over-claiming, or even trying to ascribe current things more to climate change than to other effects, environmentalists lend weight to the skeptics.

“Like, in the near term, the Pacific oscillation, this El Nino thing, has a much bigger impact on current weather than [man-made] climate change has had so far.”

Nevertheless, in the interest of ending billions of years of those climate changes, President Obama has made good on his pledge to bankrupt the coal industry. And don’t expect his administration’s like-minded allies’ war on fossil fuel carnage to end there.

lenaWhile previously touting natural gas as a lower emission bridge fuel to renewables, Sierra Club’s “Beyond Dirty Fuels” campaign leader Lena Moffitttakes great pride that her organization has “moved to a very clear and firm and vehement position of opposing gas.”

Interviewed on S&P Global Market Intelligence, she said, “We are doing everything we can to bring the same expertise that we brought to taking down the coal industry and coal-fired power in this country to taking on gas in the same way.”

Moffitt emphasized, “That is the one Sierra Club policy that we are all working toward: Getting us to 100% clean energy, which, of course, would include no new gas.”

Yes, this includes opposition to fracking to get it, refineries to process it, pipelines to transport it, LNG terminals to export it, and the future energy and jobs that will rely on it.

In other words, to burn down a bridge fuel to nowhere.

Reposted by  6/11/16

Federal timber policies threaten to increase wildfires on Tribal Lands

Posted by in Department of the Interior, Native American Interests, Wildfires

June 10, 2016

Barrasso Opening Statement at SCIA Hearing on Wildfires on Tribal Lands

Press Release from United States Senate Committee on Indian Affairs
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (SCIA) Chairman John Barrasso (R-WY) delivered the following remarks at a committee oversight and legislative hearing on “Improving Interagency Forest Management to Strengthen Tribal Capabilities for Responding to and Preventing Wildfires, and S. 3014, a bill to improve the management of Indian forest land, and for other purposes.”

The hearing featured testimony from Mr. Michael S. Black, director for the Bureau of Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior; Mr. James Hubbard, the deputy chief of State and Private Forestry for the U.S. Forest Service at the U.S. Department of Agriculture; the Honorable William Nicholson, board member for the Intertribal Timber Council and secretary for the Colville Business Council at the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation; and the Honorable Carole Lankford, council member for the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes.


Click here for more information on the witnesses’ testimony and to watch video of the entire hearing.

Senator Barrasso’s remarks:

“As the 2016 wildfire season begins, we take this opportunity to examine current federal laws and policies in place that strengthen tribal capabilities and capacity for responding to and preventing wildfires on tribal lands.

“According to the National Interagency Fire Center, last year, approximately 4.8 million acres of federal land managed by the Department of the Interior burned as a result of wildland fires.

“Of that amount, over a half-million acres of Bureau of Indian Affairs land burned due to wildfires.

“In my home state of Wyoming, over 3,000 acres of BIA land burned on the Wind River Reservation just last year. The BIA has a backlog of nearly 3.2 million acres of Indian forest land requiring forest health treatments.

“If solutions are not found to expedite this treatment, these acres will burn – costing hundreds of millions of dollars to suppress the fire and depriving tribes of the economic value of their forest assets.

“The Department of the Interior carries out the trust responsibilities to manage and protect Indian forests.

“The Department of Agriculture, specifically the U.S. Forest Service, is the primary neighbor of Indian lands – with over 4,000 miles of shared boundaries.

“Over 18 million acres of forests are located on over 305 Indian reservations in 24 states. These forests are vital to many Indian and rural communities.

“They provide a foundation for job creation, economic development, and cultural preservation. But one fire can destroy all of that.

“For example, the summer of 2015 produced one of the largest wildfires on the Colville reservation in Washington state.

“According to the National Interagency Coordination Center, the North Star wildland fire on the Colville reservation was the fifth most expensive wildfire in the country.

“That fire consumed over 250,000 acres of forest and devastated more than 14 percent of its commercial timber.

“Commercial timber revenues make up about $10 million of the approximately $45 million annual operating budget for the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.

“After that destructive fire season, tribal leaders began to question federal firefighting priorities.

“One witness today, William Nicholson, Board Member of the Inter-tribal Timber Council, wrote to Interior Secretary Sally Jewel in December of 2015 about his concern about new and proposed Interior Department policies for wildland fire management.

“He noted that the Intertribal Timber Council found the Department’s Risk Based Wildland Fire Management funding allocation model ‘deeply flawed.’

“The council further stated: ‘that the failure to correct [this model] and its application would result in increased long term risk to tribal and other resources managed by the Department of the Interior.’

“The council further criticized Secretarial Order 3336, which they believe prioritizes federal firefighting resources towards protecting sage grouse habitat over tribal and other previous priorities.

“The letter states – ‘We are frankly bewildered that Secretarial Order 3336 concerning the Sage Grouse appears to taken precedence over all other secretarial directives at the expense of all other species, ecosystems, and responsibilities.’

“In September of 2015, Northwest Public Radio article, the Northwest liaison for the National Interagency Fire Center stated-

“The single overriding suppression priority is the protection of human life […] After that we start looking at the protection of communities, infrastructure, property and any improvements that may be in place, and then we go on down to natural and cultural resources.”

“What this means is other factors such as roads and other structures are given higher priorities, which mean cultural resources are given a back seat. These examples raise serious concerns.

“The secretary must ensure that the trust obligation to tribes is not infringed by the very agencies entrusted to carry it out.

“More transparency in agency decision-making in terms of where assets go in preventing and fighting wildfires, is needed so that Tribal priorities are given their proper consideration.

“Senator Daines has introduced legislation which is supported by the Intertribal Timber Council, S. 3014, the Tribal Forestry Participation and Protection Act of 2016, which we will take up here today.

“This bill would increase interagency forest management between the tribes, the Departments of Agriculture and the Department of the Interior.

“This bill will also create a ten-year pilot program that authorizes the secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture, at the request of an Indian tribe, in consultation with state and local governments, to treat federal forest land as Indian forest land for the sole purpose of expediting forest health projects on federal lands that have a direct connection to the tribe.

“This bill gives the secretaries of Agriculture and the Interior authority to enter into 638 contracts with tribes to complete administrative functions under the Tribal Forest Protection Act of 2004, rather than requiring that the federal government do it for them.”

Reposted by  6/10/16

Undeniable evidence that BLM mismanagement is starving wild horses

Posted by in Bureau of Land Management, Government Incompetence, Radical Environmentalism

June 7, 2016 

The federal government is more interested in pleasing radical “animal rights” groups than actually caring for the animals in its charge. Wild horse herds in the Southwest are reproducing at unsustainable rates and starving as a result. The Bureau of Land Management, under the the Department of Interior, has failed to apply scientific knowledge to wild horse herd management, and has instead bent to the will of ideologically-driven groups with radical agendas. In the end, its the wild horses paying the price.

On May 25, Utah Congressman Chris Stewart made the following remarks:

According to the Bureau of Land Management, there are over sixty-seven thousand wild horses on public land in the west, and the BLM estimates that the number will double in just four more years. Wednesday, Utah Representative Chris Stewart insisted, the crisis requires a bi-partisan solution, and right away.

The congressman made the comments in a House interior appropriations sub-committee meeting, holding up a photograph of an emaciated mare, nursing a small colt.

“These animals, as I’ve said, if you care about these animals like I do, we can’t just continue with what’s happening here. By the BLM own estimate that they gave us, just in the last couple of days, it’s going to cost us a billion dollars to care for these animals in the next few years – a billion dollars.”

Adoption markets for wild horses are saturated, and under pressure from animal activists, federal law prohibits the sale or adoption of wild horses if such sale or adoption might lead to slaughter, either in the U.S. or abroad.

Please share this evidence of starvation and mismanagement by the Bureau of Land Management of Utah’s wild horses.



Reposted by 6/7/16

POOPGATE: Who’s spreading feces at EPA? McCarthy hinders IG probe

Posted by in Corruption, Federal Abuse, Government Run Amok

June 6, 2016

by Jazz Shaw

as published by Hot Air

The troubles at the Environmental Protection Agency continue unabated this month, but this time we’re not talking about the various spills and disasters with Native Americans which have been in the news of late. An earlier scandal embroiling the agency involved a senior official who was charged with sexually harassing dozens of female employees and resulted in charges of the EPA stonewalling the investigation. Though we were assured that there would be more transparency and answers provided, the latest report to Congress from the agency’s Inspector General’s Office indicates that the promised cooperation has not materialized and numerous documents and records are still being withheld. (Washington Free Beacon)

The Environmental Protection Agency is still blocking its inspector general from investigating wrongdoing at the agency, according to the government watchdog’s semi-annual report to Congress.

More than a year after coming under scrutiny for stonewalling an investigation into a senior official accused of sexually harassing over a dozen women, the EPA is still not being cooperative with the inspector general.

“In the previous Semiannual Report to Congress, we reported theoretical progress with regard to the longstanding denial of access for the [Office of Inspector General] OIG by the EPA’s Office of Homeland Security (OHS) to information sought by the OIG,” the report said. “After considerable delay, OHS provided some documents to the OIG but continued to deny access to others.”

The accused official in this case was, as you may recall, allowed to retire without penalty. Making it even more odious was the fact that he retired on the same day he was scheduled to be interviewed by the Inspector General’s office. More than a dozen other officials in the department are alleged to have known about the accusations and the ongoing harassment problems, but they said nothing.

Now, even with one of the brighter spotlights available shining on them, the EPA continues to stall. They have repeatedly tried to claim that their cooperation is limited because the FBI doesn’t want them talking to the IG while their own investigation rolls out, but the Bureau has shot down that excuse repeatedly.

“During the semiannual reporting period ending March 31, 2016, senior officials from the OIG and EPA met with senior Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) officials about, among other things, any FBI insistence on restricting access by the OIG to any information shared with or held by the EPA,” the report said. “In short, the FBI assured the OIG and EPA that the FBI sought no restriction, and agreed that FBI information could be shared with the OIG.

The EPA said the agency will continue to not share information with the inspector general of its investigations into its employees, who have been caught watching porn at work for up to six hours a day, and spreading fecesin hallways.

I recall a comedian who used to do a routine about what to do when your girlfriend discovers that you’ve been cheating on her. You’ve got to, “stick with your lie,” as the advice went. But that only works up to a point.

Gina McCarthy EPA

EPA stonewaller in chief, Gina McCarthy

The EPA appears to have been caught not only covering up for someone accused of serious misconduct, but making up completely unsupportable excuses for why they refuse to cooperate with the IG’s office. At some point the senior management of the agency needs a complete housecleaning to get rid of the old guard and bring in some people who are interested in accountability.  Unfortunately, Gina McCarthy appears to have no intention of stepping down and President Obama is too loyal to his allies to show her the door.

Reposted by  6/6/16

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