Montana’s AG Blasts Biden BLM for “Public Land” Lockout
Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen (R-MT) held the Biden Administration's feet to the fire on national TV recently.
In an interview with Fox Business, the ranch kid from Northeastern Montana who now serves as AG went after the Biden Administration's proposed conservation rule. The rule is basically another way to lock Montanans out of their so-called public lands.
AG Knudsen: We're talking about allowing environmentalist groups to come in, lease large swaths of federal land, and basically lock it up. That's locking it up from farming, that's blocking it from ranching- any kind of natural resource development- timber development, obviously responsibly. But even from from recreational use, prospectively here. You're talking about locking up huge swaths of federal land and basically just letting it sit wild. We have a hard enough time with forest fires here in Montana, we don't need more federal land that we can't go in and log and clean off.
Click here to watch the full video of AG Knudsen on Fox Business.
Montana Governor Greg Gianforte has also taken shots at Biden's conservation rule. In a letter to Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland and BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning, the governor how the rule would violate federal law.
Gov. Gianforte: The Rule’s creation of ‘conservation leases’ conflicts with the Taylor Grazing Act, Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), and Public Rangelands Improvement Act. This Rule is nothing more than a revival of the 1995 conservation use rule, already stricken by the courts as unlawful.
The governor also criticized the rule for conflicting with the state’s work to address Montana’s forest health crisis.
Gov. Gianforte: Montana’s forests are emitting more carbon than they capture, the core fire season is 40 days longer than it was 30 years ago, and the forest products industry continues to struggle amid record lumber prices. Over 64 percent of forested lands in Montana are federally owned, and of that federal ownership, 53 percent are not available for active management due to existing use designations.
The governor’s full letter can be viewed here.