There are presently millions of acres of land in the West that are managed by the BLM on which hunters and fishermen rely upon annually. Under the BLM’s Planning 2.0 proposal, a summary of what is being proposed is yet another smoke and mirrors presentation.
Although there are some reasonable issues being proposed, it’s what is behind the curtain that causes the most distress among those that oppose this plan.
Transparency is always the issue and given the nature of government, BLM or FWS, it’s typically sub-supported by environmentalists who want their way through donations that are typically hard to pass up. This puts the BLM and FWS in a position of bending to envirolitigants by “dressing” up the formal legislation.
Support Of The BLM Planning Rule 2.0
The following are remarks that were sent to Arizona legislators from local sportsmen’s groups based in Arizona. Under the proposed plan:
1. The BLM is required to gather public opinion and consider the best available information at the start of the planning process.
2. Requires BLM’s to propose “preliminary alternatives,” and solicit feedback from the public before formally proposing a range of alternatives in the draft Resource Management Plan.
3. Requires the BLM to identify important areas for fish and wildlife and high valued backcountry hunting and fishing areas early in the plan development process.
4. The new rule reverts back to the 1983 planning rules, which were universally unpopular.
In summary, the revised Planning 2.0 rule increases agency transparency and incorporates best practices in land-use planning and wildlife management, while maintaining the important cooperating agency role of state and local governments. The new rule is a productive step toward improving BLM planning, and our organizations and the thousands of Western sportsmen.
It is recognized that changes need to be made with not only the Bureau of Land Management but the Fish and Wildlife Service as well. Over the decades, these organizations have manipulated the public for self serving purposes supported by environmental groups with non-sportsmen’s agendas.
Opposition To The BLM Planning Rule 2.0
The pragmatic view of the obvious is that “government owns too much!” What started out as a great idea is now a can of worms. The interests of the BLM and FWS were never to confiscate land, but to protect it for the public. It’s a simple strategy that got blown out of proportion.
Both the BLM and the FWS now have huge budgets which are mostly spent on the administrative side, not the field side. (For 2016: BLM $1.26B and FWS $1.56B )They are top-heavy to put it mildly and this is due to expansive legislation to appease the environmentalists. Little is ever done to support the outdoorsmen, except with legislation like 2.0 which promotes input from the public and touts transparency, but it’s rarely taken into consideration. Tax payers foot the bills.
Because of the lack of transparency, sportsmen and state wildlife agencies have struggled over the years to understand what the BLM is doing and information is hard to come by. You need only call your local BLM department with questions and chances are you’ll get the run around (smoke) and pushed off to some other person (mirror). There are great examples of where the BLM and FWS refuse to cooperate with local agencies and sportsmen.