The Bureau of Land Management announced last week the deferral of 58 parcels, including 74,516 acres in the North Fork, from the Dec. 13 oil and gas sale.
A statement issued by BLM Colorado Nov. 2 explains, "BLM Colorado is deferring parcels that contain big game habitat in cooperation with a request from the State of Colorado to delay leasing to allow consideration of further habitat protections.
The Bureau of Reclamation has released a final Finding of No Significant Impact and Environmental Assessment on the Fire Mountain Canal Salinity Reduction Piping Project located in Delta County. The project will replace approximately 3.67 miles of open irrigation ditch with buried pipe.
On Tuesday, Sept. 11, the Delta County Board of Commissioners called a special meeting to consider the board's response to the Bureau of Land Management's preliminary Environmental Assessment (EA) concerning the lease parcels proposed for the December BLM sale.
Several people from the North Fork were present to provide input.
Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper last week sent letters to the Colorado Bureau of Land Management expressing concerns with the pending December 2018 oil and gas lease sales and urging the agency to defer the remaining parcels that have been requested for deferral by the state and local communities.
A newly published book of essays by artist-in-residence Joe Colwell highlights the scenery and serenity of Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area. Sponsored by Colorado Canyons Association, in partnership with the Bureau of Land Management, "Echoes of Time: Reflections on the Mesas and Canyons on the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area" is a first-time artist-in-residence production for the national conservation area.
During constituent time at the Sept. 4 meeting of the Board of County Commissioners three people from the North Fork appealed to the county commissioners to take additional action on the Bureau of Land Management leases up for sale in December.
Mariah Whoolilurie said she arrived in the North Fork last November, battling health conditions, to heal and find fresh air.
In a special meeting held Monday evening, the Town of Paonia Board of Trustees voted to authorize Town Administrator Ken Knight to execute and submit a draft letter to the Bureau of Land Management regarding the Preliminary Environment Assessment for proposed oil and gas lease sales in the upper North Fork Valley. The letter is signed on behalf of mayor, the board, and town citizens.
The Paonia Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 10, to consider comments to the Bureau of Land Management Colorado River Valley Field Office regarding the proposed December oil and gas lease sales.
The Bureau of Reclamation has released a draft finding of no significant impact and environmental assessment on the Delta Irrigation Canal Salinity Control Piping Project located in Delta County. The project would replace approximately 6.1 miles of open irrigation ditch with buried pipe.
On July 17, Governor John Hickenlooper sent Colorado's scoping comments to the Bureau of Land Management regarding BLM's December 2018 oil and gas lease sale.
The governor applauded BLM for using its discretion to allow the state and the public the opportunity to provide scoping comments, as well as a public comment opportunity on the environmental assessment later this summer.
The Colorado River Valley Field Office of Bureau of Land Management notified the Delta County Commissioners in late June of a competitive oil and gas lease sale scheduled for Dec. 6, 2018.
At their July 16 meeting Commissioners Doug Atchley and Don Suppes authorized and signed a letter of reply to BLM.
The Bureau of Land Management recently hired Stephanie Connolly as the Southwest District manager, and the public is invited to network with her during open houses in Durango, Dolores, Grand Junction and Montrose.
"I'm excited to be here and look forward to getting to know our partners and community members while exploring this incredible landscape," said Connolly.
The Paonia Board of Trustees has submitted comments to the Bureau of Land Management regarding the North Fork Mancos Master Development Plan. The letter recommends that the BLM reject its preliminary Environmental Assessment (EA) analyzing the proposal's impacts and conduct the more in-depth Environmental Impact Study.
The Bureau of Land Management Uncompahgre Field Office and Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests are seeking public comments on Gunnison Energy's North Fork Mancos Master Development Plan preliminary environmental assessment which analyzes oil and gas development about 12 miles northeast of Paonia.
County Commissioners Doug Atchley, Mark Roeber and Don Suppes recently sent a letter to Ryan Zinke, Secretary of the Department of Interior.
They supported the secretary's efforts to reorganize the various agencies housed in the Department of Interior to achieve efficiency.
The Bureau of Land Management's Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area Advisory Council held its final meeting Jan. 8 in Delta.
The agenda for the meeting focused on implementation priorities for the approved Dominguez-Escalante Resource Management Plan.
Permits for cutting Christmas trees on Bureau of Land Management lands are available in Grand Junction, Montrose, Cortez and Durango at the following locations:
Permits for cutting Christmas trees on Bureau of Land Management lands are available in Grand Junction, Montrose, Cortez and Durango at the following locations:
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Uncompahgre Field Office released the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Bull Mountain Unit Master Development Plan, providing direction for the development of approximately 19,670 acres of federal and private mineral estate near the town of Paonia.
The Bureau of Reclamation has awarded a $3.9 million contract for construction of the GK Lateral and Silt Pump Canal Pipelines. The contract was awarded to ESCO Construction Company from Evergreen.
Mountain Coal Company received good news last week that a royalty rate reduction for a portion of the coal mined at the West Elk Mine near Somerset will be continued for another five years.
The Bureau of Land Management announced Friday that a royalty rate reduction (RRR) has been extended five years, effective from Feb. 1, 2015.
The Board of County Commissioners on Monday, April 24, met with Greg Larson, the BLM's new manager for the Uncompahgre Field Office, during its regular meeting in Delta.
The county has deep interest in public lands issues.
In January, Dana Wilson was named the new associate district manager for the Bureau of Land Management's Southwest District, based out of the Montrose Public Lands Center. The Southwest District includes about 2.6 million acres of BLM lands within the Grand Junction, Uncompahgre and Tres Rios Field Offices.
More than 60 business owners from across the Western Slope have submitted a letter to senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner urging support for keeping the Bureau of Land Management's Methane and Waste Prevention Rule in place.
Greg Larson has been selected as the Uncompahgre field manager in Montrose. Larson is responsible for overseeing about one million acres of BLM lands in Montrose, Ouray, Delta, Gunnison, San Miguel and Mesa counties.
The Bureau of Land Management has announced appointments of members to its citizen-based Southwest Resource Advisory Council, which advises the agency on public land management issues in Colorado. The Southwest RAC is composed of members with diverse interests and backgrounds.
The Bureau of Land Management and the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre and Gunnison National Forests are seeking public comment on a natural gas development proposal that's about 12 miles north of Paonia.
The Bureau of Land Management finalized the plan for the 210,000-acre Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area, including the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness, by signing a Record of Decision for the area this week. The Dominguez-Escalante NCA includes portions of Mesa, Delta and Montrose counties.
Delta County Commissioners have released an official position on the BLM's proposed management prescriptions for the Gunnison sage grouse (GSG).
In general, the county's comments, based on extensive citations from scientific literature, seek to expose and correct a bias against livestock grazing seen in the BLM proposals.
County government continues moving forward on opportunities to support the coal industry.
Earlier this month, the U.S. Regional Forester announced that his agency has completed the rule making and environmental analyses to reinstate the North Fork Coal Mining Area Exception to the Colorado Roadless Rule.
On Monday, the Board of County Commissioners were visited by two constituents from Paonia who expressed concerns about inadequacies they see in the Bureau of Land Management's Draft Resource Management Plan (DRMP) document.
Mary DiFranco and Susan Friar told commissioners there are "unanswered questions" in the BLM's plan document.
On Nov. 1, local and state-wide conservation groups turned in thousands of comments to the Bureau of Land Management asking for the future conservation of public lands in the Uncompahgre Field Office planning area. Today was the deadline for public comment on the proposed Resource Management Plan, a large scale planning document released this summer that will impact 675,800 acres of public land stretching from McClure Pass to Telluride.
The Town of Crawford will take public comment on its draft comments on the Bureau of Land Management's draft Resource Management Plan at the Oct. 19 meeting.
According to town clerk Cally Gallegos, trustees voted at the Oct. 5 meeting to draft a letter urging protection of the town's interests including water, sewer, recreation, schools and citizens.
The Town of Paonia Board of Trustees will make changes to the town's draft comments on the BLM Resource Management Plan after hearing numerous concerns and comments from citizens at a special meeting on Oct. 5.
The public comment period on the draft plan, which will guide the federal agency in land management for 20 to 30 years, ends Nov. 1.
The Town of Paonia Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting at 6 p.m. today (Wednesday, Oct. 5) to discuss proposed comments by the town regarding the Bureau of Land Management Uncompahgre Field Office draft Resource Management Plan.
An area in North Delta open to cross-country ATV travel could be subject to limitations under the BLM Uncompahgre Resource Plan now under review.
The open area covers 8,560 acres about six miles northeast of Delta.
The Bureau of Land Management's plan for a small area just west of Delta has initiated a formal protest by COPMOBA, the parent organization of the Delta County group, DAMB, Delta Area Mountain Bikers. The protest is based, in part, on BLM's proposed designation of the area north of the Escalante Rim Road.
With time running out for North Fork citizens and municipalities to submit formal written comments on the Bureau of Land Management's draft Resource Management Plan for managing BLM-administered surface land and mineral estate in southwestern Colorado, Alex Johnson requested to speak at the July 26 Paonia town board meeting.
Johnson, executive director for the Western Slope Conservation Center, said he represents the organization's roughly 450 members, most of whom live in the North Fork area and Paonia.
Local community organizations are hosting an informational and action meeting for North Fork residents to learn about BLM's proposed resource management plan (RMP), which will determine how public lands on the Western Slope are managed for the next 20-30 years. The meeting will take place at Paonia High School at 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 8.
In response to public requests, the Bureau of Land Management Uncompahgre Field Office is extending the comment period for Uncompahgre Field Office Draft Resource Management Plan for 60 days. The comment period, originally scheduled to close on Sept. 1 will be extended through Nov. 1.
A flood of federal paperwork and data on public lands issues released recently by the BLM has left the county staff treading water trying to deal with all the material in order to offer meaningful comment.
The BLM's paper tide of proposed regulations, management plans and environmental impact statements, coming within a few days of each other this summer, has led the county government to seek an extension of time to review it all -- especially the all-important BLM Uncompahgre Field Office Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) released in May.
North Fork towns are working to meet the approaching deadline for commenting to the Bureau of Land Management regarding implementation of a moratorium on new coal leasing. The moratorium remains in place while a full comprehensive review of possible reforms to the industry is carried out by the Department of the Interior, which oversees coal leasing programs.
On July 7, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Uncompahgre Field Office released its preferred plan for environmentally responsible oil and gas development in the Bull Mountain Unit, located in the upper North Fork Valley near Paonia, while addressing potential resource impacts and the public's concerns.
The Bureau of Land Management has released a plan guiding management in the 210,000-acre Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area, including the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness. Congress, based on broad local support, designated these public lands as a National Conservation Area in 2009 for their unique geologic, cultural and ecological resources in the spectacular canyon country of the Uncompahgre Plateau.
On June 27, the Board of County Commissioners began the process of developing comments on the BLM's Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) for the Uncompahgre Planning Area.
The Draft RMP, once finalized, will define land use for 675,800 surface acres of local BLM managed public lands for at least the next 20 years.
More than 150 citizens attended the first of six open house meetings sponsored by the Bureau of Land Management to provide an overview of its "Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement" (RMP/EIS). The RMP/EIS is intended to establish a framework for management of more than 675,800 acres of BLM lands and 971,220 acres of federal subsurface mineral estates administered by the BLM.
Congressman Scott Tipton (CO-03) has introduced the Western Colorado Wilderness Study Area Release Act (H.R. 5570), a bill that would release acreage in Delta, Mesa and Jackson counties from further consideration for designation as wilderness by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
A major battle in the war on coal was fought at Grand Junction on June 23 as proponents of the industry went head-to-head with its opponents in hearings hosted by the U.S. Department of Interior and BLM.
Nationally, BLM is evaluating whether to raise the current 12.5 percent federal royalty rate on coal mined by above-ground producers, and 8 percent royalty on underground producers using public lands.
The Board of County Commissioners has taken a strong stand in opposition to national planning rule changes proposed by the Bureau of Land Management, saying they will negatively impact county interests and citizens.
The commissioners contend the proposed Resource Management Planning Rule (also known as Planning Rule 2.0) fails in its aim to modernize agency resource management planning in four key areas:
Citizens from across Colorado and the West are expected to show up in force in Grand Junction June 23 to protest the Interior Department's moratorium on new coal leases from federal land and its attempt to stop existing mines through increased royalties on production.
The Bureau of Land Management's Uncompahgre Field Office announces the release of a draft plan for managing BLM-administered surface land and mineral estate in southwestern Colorado. The draft Resource Management Plan revision (RMP) features a wide range of alternatives reflecting different visions for administering these lands and seeks public review and comment to help refine the draft into a final plan to guide the overall management of these resources for the next two decades.
The Bureau of Land Management is offering a cash reward for information leading to a conviction of persons responsible for vandalism in the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area. On April 17, visitors reported vandalism of the Bridgeport footbridge, which is a popular access point to the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness.
The Board of County Commissioners has asked the Bureau of Land Management to extend the time for making comments on a proposed national rule change that would affect the agency's definition of "multiple use."
The commissioners approved a letter to Neil Kornze, BLM director, asking for a 120-day extension for comments on the BLM's draft planning rule. The original deadline for comments was April 25.
Delta Area Mountain Bikers (DAMB), a local trail advocacy group, announces progress in its efforts to build new recreational trails in the Gunnison Gorge Natural Conservation Area east of Delta and south of Austin.
DAMB, as a chapter of COPMOBA (Colorado Plateau Mountain Bike Association) sees trail development as serving both recreation for Delta County residents and as an economic booster for the local and regional economy.
The Bureau of Land Management Uncompahgre Field Office is seeking public comments on 21 Special Recreation Permit applications, including six new applications and 15 applications for renewals.
The Board of County Commissioners wants to see some congressional interest in grazing restrictions being proposed on public lands north of Delta.
The BoCC has put an exclamation point to its recent comments opposing grazing cutbacks proposed by the BLM.
The Bureau of Land Management Uncompahgre Field Office, in cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service, has extended the deadline for the public to submit comments on the 5 Pad/25 Well preliminary Environmental Assessment until Tuesday, Aug. 4.
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