Friday, May 09, 2014

Ranchers hopeful Otero County Sheriff can unlock USFS gates - video

Ranchers in Otero County, New Mexico, will have to wait until Monday to see if commissioners pass a resolution that would allow the sheriff to unlock newly installed gates on the Agua Chiquita. The water supply for livestock in the area is between Sunspot and Timberon. The U.S. Forest Service recently installed new fencing and locked gates to protect what they call a riparian area. "It's not about watering cattle, it's not about grazing fees, it's not about the things that you hear. It's about simply, our constitutional rights and what America stands for," rancher Odie Prather said. Cattle ranchers in Otero County say the USFS is blocking off access to the Agua Chiquita, a small stream in the Sacramento Mountains that's dependent on how much precipitation the area gets. "If you can get control of the water and the rights, then you can get control of the people. We're facing a tyranny right now," Prather said. "This is the federal government encroaching on rights that they don't have," County Commissioner Ronny Rardin said during a meeting on Thursday morning. County commissioners are taking the ranchers side on the issue, and tried voting Thursday to allow the sheriff to remove the locks on the gates. But the resolution vote had to be pushed back until Monday...more

Here's the KVIA-TV video report.


Anonymous said...

Note that the fence in question has been in place for many years, the forest service was just improving it by making it pipe instead of barbed wire. Also note that water is accessible outside of the fenced area. This is just a fact not mentioned.

Anonymous said...

Interesting. Its always nice to get the whole story.