05.19.17

Gardner’s Proposal to Move BLM West is Supported by Coloradans

Senator Gardner has introduced legislation that would authorize the move of the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) headquarters from Washington, D.C. to the West. This legislation is supported by countless Coloradans and local officials, including Club 20, Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Farm Bureau, Fruita Chamber of Commerce, Colorado Rural Electric Association, Colorado Wool Growers Association, Grand County, Hinsdale County, and Montezuma County.

 

What Coloradans are Saying:

 

Club 20

“Decentralization of the BLM will create expanded job opportunities for the Western US and Western Colorado and those making critical decisions on the management and regulation of these lands will be those who live in the communities surrounded by them.”

 

Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce

“We applaud your “thinking outside the box” and seeing the benefit of moving up to 400 key decision makers in the BLM closer to the lands they manage. It will provide a clearer vision for them of how their decisions impact the lands of the West and offer cost savings in terms of overhead costs such as office space, employee travel and employee housing costs.”

 

Colorado Farm Bureau

“Locating the BLM headquarters in the west would send a clear message by Congress and the Administration that it is important for federal officials to be in touch with the areas that are affected by their decisions. We feel this will create needed reforms to federal regulations that have been driven by beltway bureaucrats who don’t see firsthand the impacts of overburdensome rulemaking. This move could result in a more cooperative approach between ranchers, energy development, recreation and environmental benefits that advance when a multiple use concept is applied to federal lands. We feel strongly that a move could end the delays in decision making that are driving up the cost of doing business and resulting in unnecessary bureaucratic obstacles.”

Hinsdale County

“It couldn’t be more important to have the national BLM office in Colorado which is centrally located in the heart of the American West. Our surrounding counties, also richj in federal lands, face many of the same challenges as Hinsdale with our federal lands.”

 

Montezuma County

“Moving the BLM Headquarters to the Western United States will demonstrate BLM’s commitment to the people living amongst these lands that they will listen and work with local residents. Furthermore Decentralization of the BLM will create expanded job opportunities for the Western US and Western Colorado which are some of the most rural and economically challenged regions in the US. Relocating the BLM Headquarters to the Western United States would also be a great benefit to Native American’s whom tribal lands often border BLM. Understanding and developing relationships with our Native American Community cannot be done from an office in Washington. By living and working with the people who are most impacted by BLM decisions, those making critical decisions on the management and regulation of these lands will also be those who live, work and recreate in the communities surrounded by them.”

 

In the News:

 

The Durango Herald: Cory Gardner, Scott Tipton want BLM headquarters moved west

“The idea is to simply break up the Washington mentality, to bring the leadership to where the land is,” Gardner said. “This is putting the management and the decision-makers in the same place as those affected by those decisions.”

 

Grand Junction Daily Sentinel: Gardner to BLM: Go west

The thrust of Gardner’s pitch is that the more than 99 percent of the nearly 250 million acres of land the BLM manages is west of the Mississippi River. “That is a heck of a long ways away from Washington, D.C., a heck of a long ways away from the policymakers who are impacting the lives of Westerners daily. And that’s why I think we should move the headquarters of BLM to the West, where BLM land isn’t a thousand miles away but it’s in the backyard.”

 

The idea of moving the headquarters to Colorado won support from Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, according to video of comments he made during a panel discussion organized by the Colorado Petroleum Council and American Petroleum Institute. The website http://www.westernwire.net, a news and commentary endeavor of the Western Energy Alliance oil and gas association, posted the video clip in which Hickenlooper talks about the idea of bringing the headquarters here in the state. “We should go get ‘em,” Hickenlooper said to some laughter and applause.

 

Grand Junction Daily Sentinel Editorial: Gardner’s grand idea

“Brilliant” may be a strong term, but how else to describe a proposal that would be nothing but beneficial to Grand Junction? It would go down as one of the most important developments in the city’s history for its economic impact alone.

 

Colorado Springs Gazette Editorial: Sen. Gardner takes on Washington 

On the home front, Gardner is working diligently to try moving the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management from Washington, D.C., to Grand Junction. He is dead serious and committed to the idea. "There are nearly 250 million acres of BLM land and 99.9 percent of it is west of the Mississippi River," Gardner said. "Of 9,000 BLM employees, only 400 are in the BLM office in D.C. Let's put them to Grand Junction, where 76 percent of Mesa County is public land."

 

KJCT8: Could the BLM headquarters move to Grand Junction?

“My idea is to move the BLM headquarters to the west, put it in a state that's surrounded by BLM lands," Sen. Gardner said. Gardner says he'd like to see the agency move it's headquarters nearly 2,000 miles from our nation's capital to Grand Junction. “It's got great air access to the airport. It's right on the interstate. It's located close to Wyoming, Utah and other BLM heavy states," Gardner said. 

 

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