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Trump administration to review dozens of US national monuments

Trump administration to review dozens of US national monuments

"It needed and deserved the national monument designation and the use of the Antiquities Act was appropriate".

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that the President will this week sign an executive order to ask the Interior Department to review all national monument designations in the past 21 years.

While Zinke did not identify which designations the administration considers the most problematic, the review has been specifically crafted to encompass national monuments in Utah: Grand Staircase-Escalante, which Clinton declared in 1996, and Bears Ears, which Obama declared last December.

Friends of Gold Butte, which supported Obama's southern Nevada monument designation, told BuzzFeed News it opposes "any attempts to reduce the scope or influence of the Antiquities Act".

The order, likely to be signed on Wednesday, will call for Zinke and the Department of the Interior to examine all recent designations and determine whether they are examples of presidential overreach, based on a century-old law that presidents can designate land without congressional approval.

The review of the Antiquities Act - which grants the USA president the authority to designate national monuments - is long overdue, according to Zinke, and will be done to determine if monument designations are in sync with the law.

Most of the large monuments have encountered opposition, including Katahdin Woods and Waters in ME, the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument off the coast of Hawaii and Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks in New Mexico.

The Grand Staircase-Escalante monument was created in September of 1996 by President Bill Clinton. That document will contain recommendations for how the president should deal with the other monuments included in the review.

"With this review, the Trump Administration is walking into a legal, political and moral minefield", said Kate Kelly, public lands director for the Center for American Progress.




Former Interior Secretary Sally Jewell communicated as early as 2013 with Utah's members of Congress about the Bears Ears area and stayed in regular contact with them until monument designation.

"It's a crock that grazing is the issue here", Wallin said, adding that if there are grazing restrictions, they could be because of a drought, overuse or other reasons not related to a monument designation.

"The storm is getting worse before it gets better", he said. According to OIA's statement, the outdoor industry believes public lands are special places attracting millions of people and generating billions of dollars in economic activity.

The Bears Ears was created by President Obama after several years of discussions that included proposed legislation, the Public Lands Initiative (PLI).

"The federal government can be a good neighbor to states in the West", he said.

In President Trump, we have a leader who is committed to defending the Western way of life.

The Bears Ears are sacred to local Native American tribes, and the surrounding area is home to thousands of archaeological sites that detail the history of the land's ancient inhabitants.

Cantwell said Tuesday that Trump's decision to de-list would be "illegal" and faulted Zinke and others for doing the "bidding" for coal and natural resource companies.

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