Public Lands Laws Seeing New Opportunities

Kelly Marshall

They’ve hit the ground running, says Ethan Lane, Executive Director Public Lands Council & NCBA Federal Lands. The 115th Congress is underway and the new administration isn’t resting on its laurels, so now is the time to dig in and get the work done.

The first priority is to roll back burdensome regulations facing cattle producers, especially with regard to federal lands in the west.  The U.S. House just passed a resolution that would repeal the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM’s) Planning 2.0 Rule, something that will likely be voted on in the Senate next week, Lane believes.  Repeal of this rule would be a major victory for cattle producers.

The Antiquities Act is one the broadest powers granted to the President, Lane told Jamie Johansen at the 2017 Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show. With no discussion or studies a president may simple draw a circle around an area and designate it as federal lands. Obama used that power 30 times, causing major changes in counties that were dependent on agriculture. Rolling those back and bringing things into manageable proportions is another key focus.

The Endangered Species Act is right up there too. As the program has grown and grown workers are so overwhelmed with lawsuits their recovery rate for ednagereed species is 1.4 percent, Lane says. Instead the organizations need to be able to focus on animals in a way that makes a difference.

Educating the new administration on what makes a difference is also getting attention. “We have a lot of opportunity headed into this new administration,” Lane says. “There’s going to be a learning curve; this president is not from the west, his chief advisors are not from the west–that’s okay. It gives us an opportunity to help him understand why these issues are so important and most specifically, the role that ranchers play in managing these landscapes because that gets lost in the conversation sometimes.”

Learn more in Jamie’s full interview with Ethan Lane here: Interview with Ethan Lane, Executive Director Public Lands Council & NCBA Federal Lands

View and download photos from the event here: 2017 Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show Photos

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