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Legislature Studies Federal Land Takeover

Here is a strange deal. See the Billings Gazette Story linked below " Panel discusses state ownership of federal land .Spirited discussions took place in the capitol Wednesday on whether Montana should attempt to wrest ownership of public lands from the federal government.."

What is going on here and why is the Environmental Quality Control Council studying it ?

What is the Environmental Quality Council ?

Why are people from Utah coming up and trying to set up a Montana takeover of Federal Land ?

First, as far as one can tell, some out of state folks with a "sagebrush rebellion" agenda got a hold of some Montana legislators with a bill SJ 15 - Interim joint legislative study on Forest Service and BLM land management.. It passed and went into effect without the Governor's signature.

The "Sagebrush Revolution" is alive and well in states like Utah, Idaho, Arizona , and New Mexico where the radicals and big money interests are salivating to take over federal land.

The Environmental Quality Council (EQC) is a 17-member joint legislative committee created by the Montana Environmental Policy Act (MEPA). to study environmental compliance. Apparently the charter of the committee has been significantly enlarged .

There are many concerns about this effort. PLWA president John Gibson said " Remember that in an environment where the cry on the street is for less state government, the obstacles of managing 30 million acres of federal land are enormous. This includes timber, grazing, recreation, and fire suppression . I don't see how they could do it. Furthermore, It took 100 years for the citizens to get full access to state lands. Do we have to start all over ? "

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Public Land/Water Access Association Inc. or PLWA, is a citizen group organized and operated under the Montana nonprofit corporation act.

Articles and Information on this site represent the opinion of the writer and are not intended as legal advice. Legal counsel may be needed in dealing with specific access situations and issues.
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