Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Ranchers vs. BLM in grazing allotment squeeze

Garfield County ranchers are fighting a proposed Bureau of Land Management order that would cut a cattle grazing allotment on federal lands in half. They say it would kill their family businesses. Jack Farris, a rancher near Parachute, approached the Garfield County commissioners Monday for support against the order, which he said will cut his family's income by 50 percent, putting them and many others for whom they run cattle out of business. Farris said he knows of about 10 other ranching families around the Roan Plateau that will face the same fate if this order is successful. The permitees have submitted a protest to the local field office's proposal. "If this in fact is put through, we're out of business," Farris, a third-generation Garfield County resident, told the commissioners. The BLM's proposed order is for the re-issue of six different allotments in the western part of the county. But the big change would be cutting use of the East Fork Common Allotment in half. The BLM's proposal focuses on reducing the environmental impact, especially to riparian areas, of cattle grazing...more

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