Thursday, May 10, 2012

Commission expects BLM to honor master plan

The San Juan County Commission spent their May 7 meeting dealing with a myriad of public land issues. The commission approved a letter to the Moab office of the Bureau of Land Management as a response to the scoping period regarding the new BLM Master Leasing Plan process.

Commissioners made it clear that they object to the master leasing plan on all levels. 
Commissioner Bruce Adams said the current BLM resource management plan, which the county was involved in, took five or six years to develop, “Now they come back and want to do another layer on top of the RMP. We object to the whole process. We object to them now including potash in the master leasing,” said Adams.

The letter states, “Mineral exploration and development have been a significant part of San Juan County’s economy for decades. Mineral industry has suffered in recent years due to market fluctuation and increased regulation placed on exploration and extraction of minerals. San Juan County has suffered a significant reduction in its tax base as a result of the depressed mineral market.

“The fact that the MLP process may take at least three years or more to complete before new mineral leases can be issued will further delay the opportunity the county has to improve its economy through mineral exploration and development.” San Juan Record