CHEYENNE, Wyo. – Governor Mark Gordon has announced that Wyoming is appealing a massive acquisition of land by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Natrona and Carbon Counties. The State has concerns that BLM did not involve the public in the acquisition process and that the environmental assessment did not adequately consider impacts on tax revenues, school funding, grazing, mineral development and other natural resources.
The Governor emphasized that the challenge to the acquisition is focused on the adequacy and proper adherence to the process that occurred. He supports the expansion of public access for hunters and anglers, as well as opportunities for recreation. He also recognizes the rights of private landowners to sell their land as they see fit.
“This action is not about limiting access for sportspeople or challenging the rights of private property owners rights,” Governor Gordon said. “It is about whether the Federal government can increase its land holdings without public scrutiny, or should it adhere to the same transparent process that private landowners are subject to if they sought to purchase or exchange federal land.”
To buy or sell land the State must have a 60-day comment period and hold two public votes of the State Board of Land Commissioners.
A copy of the State’s Notice of Appeal may be found here.