House passes lands package vital to Wyoming
Washington, D.C.-Today U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis voted for and the House passed the bi-partisan National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY 2015. Attached to the military funding authorization bill is a lands package containing bills that address issues very important to Wyoming.
“In the past the annual NDAA has often contained various land packages, and this year is a solid win for Wyoming,” said Rep. Lummis. “I was able to get my bill that consolidates and fully restores Ranch A to Wyoming into the package. Also, John Barrasso’s grazing bill and BLM piloting program bill were included and they give certainty to Wyoming’s robust agriculture and energy industries. Another part of the package protects owners of cabins on public lands by guaranteeing predictable and fair fees so that these families will not be forced to tear down their cabins.”
Among the bills in the package is one bill authorized by Rep. Lummis as well as two bills authored by Senator John Barrasso:
(Lummis) Ranch A: conveys ten acres of Forest Service land that contain the Babcock House, which is already managed and maintained by the Foundation as part of Ranch A to the State of Wyoming. It would also lift federal restrictions on use that currently prevents raising additional revenue for maintenance and improvements.
(Barrasso) Grazing Improvement: gives ranchers certainty by extending the maximum length of permits for livestock grazing on qualified public lands from 10 years to 20 years and by requiring permits to be continued until the an environmental analysis (NEPA) is completed. It also protects permits that continue current grazing management from NEPA processing and excludes trailing and crossing of livestock across public land from such requirements.
(Barrasso) Pilot Permitting: Allows BLM’s pilot offices to keep a portion of their fee money to apply it to costs of permitting on public land in that office. This will cut delay times, reduce backlog, and make responsible energy development on public lands more efficient.
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Outtagrass Cattle Co. cartoon by Jan Swan Wood for the Oct. 23, 2021, edition of Tri-State Livestock News