Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Some welcome review of the Cascade-Siskiyou expansion

By Blair Moody

Many of us in Southern Oregon welcome the Interior Department's review of selected national monuments established under the Antiquities Act. The review includes the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument and its expansion under President Obama. For those of us who were shut out of the process, including our own locally elected officials, the review gives our leaders and citizens an opportunity to voice concerns that were previously ignored. The Antiquities Act gives any president the ability to make major federal land use decisions with the stroke of a pen. It does not require public participation. A national monument is often established without analyzing how it would impact local economies, nor does it consider how access and use of public lands will be affected in the future. Such is the case of the Cascade-Siskiyou expansion. It's a political product, put together by special interest groups and Washington D.C. insiders, and driven by our U.S. Senators who are supposed to represent all Oregonians. There continues to be legitimate concerns about how the expansion might affect access and private property rights inside, and adjacent to, the monument. It's unclear how the larger monument affects our ranchers. It's also unclear what the expansion means for future management of Southern Oregon's dry, fire-prone forests that are administered by the Bureau of Land Management...more

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