PUBLIC LANDS: Cliven Bundy to appeal lawsuit judge calls ‘delusional’ 

In an eight-page ruling (See Below), Nevada state Judge Jim Crockett rejected Bundy’s assertion that only individual states — rather than the U.S. government — can own public lands.”It is simply delusional to maintain that all public land within the boundaries of Nevada belongs to the State of Nevada,” Crockett wrote in the decision dated April 1 and published yesterday.

Continue reading

Judge tosses Cliven Bundy’s claim that state owns all public lands | Las Vegas Review-Journal

District Judge Jim Crockett’s decision was handed down in response to court papers filed by the Center for Biological Diversity, a nonprofit conservation group, which had intervened in the case. The judge’s decision followed previous court decisions against Bundy, who has claimed the federal government should not own land.“It is painfully obvious that the claims asserted by Bundy in the instant matter rest upon a fundamentally flawed notion advanced by Bundy since 1998 regarding ownership of federal public lands,” Crockett wrote in an eight-page decision.

Continue reading

Solicitor general still undecided on new trial for Bundy

OJ Appellate Chief and Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth White revealed Francisco’s apparent indecision on Wednesday in a request to delay opening briefs in the case, which centers on a 2014 armed standoff between the Bundys and their supporters and the Bureau of Land Management.

“Despite the government’s diligent efforts, the Solicitor General’s review of the matter is not yet complete,” White wrote, pointing to the “massive” record in the case. “His Office, and the Solicitor General himself, are carefully reviewing the issues, the record, and the draft government brief.”

Continue reading

PUBLIC LANDS: Bundy: ‘It is due time’ for new management proposal — Wednesday, December 12, 2018 — www.eenews.net

But while Bundy’s battle with BLM over grazing fees appears to be dormant, his fight with federal prosecutors may not be over.

Although Chief U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro barred federal prosecutors from seeking a new trial against Bundy and his sons, the government filed a “protective notice of appeal” in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals this summer.

Federal prosecutors are required to file their opening brief in that case by Jan. 2, with a response from Bundy and his sons by Feb. 1.

Continue reading

Report: FBI suggested waiving fees for Cliven Bundy before ranch standoff, did not consider him a threat – The Washington Post

Three years before the impoundment of Cliven Bundy’s cattle turned into an armed confrontation between anti-government groups and federal agents, the FBI made an assessment that the Nevada rancher personally was unlikely to be violent in the event of conflict. The agency suggested a novel solution to Bundy’s 20 years of unpaid bills, one designed to put the dispute to rest: drop the fines he owed altogether.

The FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit, based in Quantico, Va., determined in 2011 that the rancher was unlikely to comply with federal court orders to move his 900 animals off federal land, where they had been illegally grazing, because “he only has enough land to handle less than 100 head of cattle.” Though the Bureau of Land Management was concerned that allowing Bundy to avoid paying federal grazing fees and fines could lead to violence, the FBI thought otherwise.

“BLM may wish to consider waiving the existing fines, as a gesture of willingness to participate in discussions geared toward negotiations,” the FBI wrote in the classified analysis, obtained by The Washington Post. The unit concluded that any alternatives the government could offer Bundy might reduce the rancher’s stress and “in turn, reduce the risk of a violent act.”

Continue reading

Bundy To Present Land Use Plan To The MVTAB

Bunkerville resident Cliven Bundy has a plan for much of the public land in northeastern Clark County. And he wants to share it with all the neighboring residents of the area, as well as get their input.

The world-renown rancher, known for taking a firm position against federal government agencies in a 2014 standoff over grazing rights, will be presenting a comprehensive draft land use plan to the Moapa Valley Town Advisory Board (MVTAB) on Wednesday, December 12 in the Overton Community Center. The meeting starts at 7:00 pm.

“This is being presented in draft form because I would really like to have the input of the people of northeastern Clark County added to it,” Bundy said last week in an interview with the Progress. “That is why I’m bringing it to the local town boards. I’d like to have a lot of people turn out and make comments on it.”

Continue reading

Recently freed rancher Cliven Bundy sues Nevada, Clark County

Lifelong Southern Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, recently cleared of federal charges and freed from jail after nearly two years, has turned his sights on state and county government.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday in Clark County District Court, Bundy claimed that former President Barack Obama’s late 2016 establishment of the Gold Butte National Monument, which occurred while the rancher was in federal custody, was “as illegal as it is unlawful” and would preclude him from continuing to function on his land “and destroy the petitioner’s livelihood.”

Bureau of Land Management officials in Las Vegas postponed discussion of the monument at its meetings this month until the Trump administration decides on possible changes to the Obama-era land designation.

“Recognizing that the land is not owned by the United States of America, (Bundy) has avoided erroneously giving money to an entity which does not actually own the land and has been careful not to give money erroneously to a stranger to the land,” according to the rancher’s lawsuit. “Thus, there is an actual, significant legal controversy of great consequence not only to petitioner in terms of as to whom has ownership and jurisdiction of the land but to People of Nevada and Clark county, the rightful owners of Nevada land.”

Continue reading

Editorial – Thomas Mitchell : Bundy case secrecy being rightfully challenged

Though the most recent trial of four defendants in the April 2014 standoff between armed protesters and Bureau of Land Management agents trying to confiscate Cliven Bundy’s cattle ended in a mistrial, the case will stand as a historic example of how sweeping secrecy can cast doubt on whether justice is being served.

This past week U.S. District Judge Gloria Navarro halted testimony in the trial and sent the jurors home while she heard arguments behind closed doors over whether the prosecution had failed to provide the defense with potentially exculpatory evidence quickly enough. The judge said the prosecution’s repeated failure to timely disclose information was “sufficient to undermine the confidence in the outcome of the trial,” which she said could result in a mistrial. This week she declared a mistrial.

Attorney Maggie McLetchie — representing the Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper and Battle Born Media, which publishes weekly newspapers in Mesquite, Ely, Eureka, Sparks and Lincoln and Mineral counties — promptly filed a motion seeking to intervene, which was granted. The newspapers are asking that all documents previously filed under seal be unsealed and that future hearings be conducted in open court.

Continue reading

BLM investigator alleges misconduct by feds in Bundy ranch standoff

Prosecutors shared it last week with defense lawyers for Bundy, his two sons and co-defendant Ryan Payne as they were in the midst of their conspiracy trial, but it’s not part of the public court record.

The memo prompted Cliven Bundy’s lawyer to file a motion early Monday to dismiss the case, already in disarray over concerns raised previously about the government’s failure to promptly share evidence with the defense.

The judge sent the jury home for more than a week as she tries to sort out the claims and prosecutors scramble to save their case.

The memo comes from Larry Wooten, who had been the lead case agent and investigator for the U.S. Bureau of Land Management after the tense confrontation outside the patriarch’s ranch near Bunkerville. Wooten also testified before a federal grand jury that returned indictments against the Bundys. He said he was removed from the investigation last February after he complained to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Nevada.

Continue reading

Interior secretary recommends shrinking Gold Butte

Interior Department Secretary Ryan Zinke on Tuesday recommended shrinking the boundaries of Gold Butte National Monument in a move that distressed conservationists, who have fought for years to protect the land near Mesquite. Zinke’s report came one day after the president slashed the size of two national monuments in Utah, a move that has already sparked a lawsuit.
Compared to the wholesale changes the president approved in Utah, any adjustments to Gold Butte are expected to be minor. But Zinke’s recommendations, although similar to a leaked draft in September, carry a symbolic weight for the area. They signal a major reversal of public lands policy that comes almost exactly one year after President Obama designated the nearly 300,000 acres that start about 10 miles from the site of the 2014 Bundy standoff.

“We will fight it in court,” Patrick Donnelly, Nevada state director at the Center for Biological Diversity wrote in an email. “And we will win.”

Continue reading

Las Vegas trial to begin for rancher Cliven Bundy and sons

Cliven Bundy, lead defendant in a case stemming from a 2014 standoff with federal agents and the 71-year-old patriarch of a family with roots in the southeastern Nevada desert since the state was founded more than 150 years ago, won’t let his lawyer buy him a suit for trial.

Instead of the standard slacks, button-down shirt and tie that incarcerated male defendants often don while facing a jury, the recalcitrant rancher plans to wear a jail-issued blue jumpsuit and orange flip-flops when he faces potential jurors for the first time on Monday morning.

“He is so principled that he’s going to do what he’s going to do, which is tell the truth and tell it as he sees it, and he’s not worried about the consequences, other than the people around him,” his lawyer, Bret Whipple, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal last week. “He refuses to put on civilian clothing because it would be misleading the jury, because he is who he is.”

Bundy, his two sons Ryan and Ammon and independent militia leader Ryan Payne have been locked up without bail in a federal holding facility for nearly two years. They face the potential of decades behind bars if convicted of conspiracy and other charges related to the armed standoff.

Continue reading

Thomas Mitchell Newspaper column: Bill would limit power to create national monuments

The House Committee on Natural Resources this past week approved a bill sponsored by Utah Republican Rep. Rob Bishop to rein in the powers granted by the Antiquities Act of 1906 that allow a president to unilaterally create huge national monuments.

The bill advanced on a party line vote of 27-13, with Democrats in opposition.

The bill, H.R. 3990, the National Monument Creation and Protection Act, amends the Antiquities Act to limit the size of future monuments and specifically grants the sitting president the power to reduce the size of existing monuments — a power Democrats have argued President Trump does not have under current law.

During his administration President Obama created 26 national monuments totaling more than 500 million acres — including the 700,000-acre Basin and Range National Monument on the border of Lincoln and Nye counties and the 300,000-acre Gold Butte National Monument in Clark County.

Continue reading

More than a third of National Park Service employees harassed at work; Zinke calls for accountability, transparency

ST. GEORGE — Federal officials on Friday released the results of a survey in which 39 percent of National Park Service employees said they had experienced harassment or discrimination on the job, then vowed to take immediate action to deal with the problem.

“From day one, I made it clear that I have zero tolerance for harassment in the workplace, and I directed leadership in the National Park Service to move rapidly to improve accountability and transparency,” Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke said. “All employees have the right to work in an environment that is safe and harassment-free.

“I’ve removed a number of people who were abusive or acted improperly that other administrations were too afraid to or just turned a blind eye to. Under my leadership, we’re going to hold people accountable. We are also fixing the problem of victims being afraid of retaliation or inaction by codifying the right for victims to report abuse to any manager in any location across the service, and by bringing on an independent, investigative partner.”

Continue reading

Post-Las Vegas Shooting Proposed Jury Questions

With the recent events in Las Vegas on 10-1-2017 and the trial postponed the defendants in the Bundy Trials were offered an opportunity to submit additional questions for a follow-up jury questioner. Below are the questions submitted so far.

Continue reading

Cliven Bundy: Feds don’t own Western states

Larry Klayman shares news in battle over land seized illegally by U.S. government. Events important for preserving America’s Constitution will be soon unfolding. Nevada rancher Cliven D. Bundy’s federal trial will finally begin in Las Vegas, Nevada, for a 2014 peaceful protest in support of the Constitution some incorrectly called “The Battle of Bunkerville.”

In fact, there was no battle from the standpoint of the peaceful protesters. Rather, it was the federal government – then run by former President Barack Obama – that threatened the Bundy family’s lives, beat the heck out of the sister of Cliven Bundy, Tasered his two sons, violently kicked the family dog and killed many of their cattle, burying them in a mass secret grave.

Continue reading

Newspaper column Thomas Mitchell : Zinke’s national monument modifications too modest

Frankly, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s memo to President Trump recommending modifications to a few national monuments — including the 300,000-acre Gold Butte National Monument in Clark County — is far too modest, but it has the Democratic contingent of Nevada’s Washington delegation squealing like a pig stuck under a gate.

Zinke recommended unspecified changes to the Gold Butte boundaries but totally ignored the massive 700,000-acre Basin and Range National Monument that straddles the border between Nye and Lincoln counties, even though members of the Congressional Western Caucus recommended reducing it to 2,500 acres — “the smallest area compatible,” as the law says, to protect the Indian petroglyphs there.

Continue reading

Corruption Continues in Upcoming Bundy Ranch Trial As Prosecution Asks Judge To Not Allow Defendants to Defend Themselves

The upcoming Bundy Ranch trial is already setting up as a display of the amount of corruption inside the federal court system.

The latest example of this corruption comes from Prosecutor Steven Myhre, who hasn’t made his case twice and is attempting it a third time on two defendants, which seems so clear to me to be a violation of the Constitution’s Double Jeopardy clause that Myhre should never be allowed to serve the people in any capacity ever again, along with Judge Gloria Navarro, who allowed it.

However, last week, Myhre submitted a twenty-six page request to the judge, which amounted to calling on the judge to suppress the defendants right to defend themselves.

Continue reading

Interior boss blasts fired Utah BLM law enforcement agent

In memo to Interior employees, deputy secretary makes example of controversial ex-Utah BLM lawman Dan Love, vow to clean up land agencies and protect those who report abuse.

A top Interior Department official has singled out the recent firing of a controversial Bureau of Land Management agent over Utah to illustrate a renewed commitment to hold accountable senior employees who misuse their official positions and to protect those who report such abuse.

Dan Love, who once led law enforcement for the BLM’s Nevada and Utah state offices, was fired not long after an Aug. 24 report from Interior’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) faulting him a second time for official misconduct, according to a memo circulated Friday by Deputy Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt.

Continue reading

Thomas Mitchell: Zinke recommendation to reduce Gold Butte Monument size met with usual blather

by Thomas Mitchel September 20, 2017 Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s memo to President Trump recommending an unspecified reduction in size of several recently created national monuments — including the 300,000-acre Gold Butte National Monument in Clark County — has sent the […]

Continue reading

Property rights attorney to lead BLM

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Budd-Falen’s appointment to head up BLM is the stark contrast between her background and that of Obama’s BLM Director, Neil Kornze. While Budd-Falen has decades of broad experience in law, natural resources policy, and Western property rights, Neil Kornze’s primary experience was as a political staffer for then-United States Senator, Harry Reid. Budd-Falen’s appointment, the firings and reassignments of thousands of Interior employees, Zinke’s monuments revisions, and new emphasis on responsible development of public lands, all signal a serious change of direction for the Bureau of Land Management

Continue reading

Shrink at least 4 national monuments and modify a half-dozen others, Zinke tells Trump

WASHINGTON – Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has recommended that President Trump modify 10 nationalmonuments created by his immediate predecessors, including shrinking the boundaries of at least four western sites,according to a copy of the report obtained by the Washington Post.

The memorandum, which the White House has refused to releasesince Zinke submitted it late last month, does not specify exactreductions for the four protected areas Zinke would have Trumpnarrow – Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante,Nevada’s Gold Butte, and Oregon’s Cascade-Siskiyou – or thetwo marine national monuments – the Pacific Remote Islands andRose Atoll – for which he raised the same prospect. The two Utah sites encompass a total of more than 3.2 million acres, part of the reason they have aroused such intense emotions since their designation.

The secretary’s set of recommendations also would change theway all 10 targeted monuments are managed. It emphasizes theneed to adjust the proclamations to address concerns of localofficials or affected industries, saying the administration shouldpermit “traditional uses” now restricted within the monuments’ boundaries, such as grazing, logging, coal mining andcommercial fishing.

Continue reading

Secretary Zinke signs Secretarial Order to Support Sportsmen & Enhance Wildlife Conservation

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke signed Secretarial Order 3356, which will support and expand hunting and fishing, enhance conservation stewardship, improve wildlife management, and increase outdoor recreation opportunities for all Americans. Secretarial Order 3356 is an extension of Secretarial Order 3347, issued on Zinke’s first day, March 2, 2017. That order identified a slate of actions for the restoration of the American sportsmen conservation ethic, which was established by President Theodore Roosevelt.

The new order comes days after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a survey that found there are 2.2 million fewer hunters in America now than in 2011. The order seeks to improve wildlife management and conservation, increase access to public lands for hunting, shooting, and fishing, and puts a new and a greater emphasis on recruiting and retaining new sportsmen conservationists, with a focus on engaging youths, veterans, minorities, and other communities that traditionally have low participation in outdoor recreation activities.

Continue reading

Welcome to the Bundy administration

Stone, however, is far from the only friend of the Bundy family in the Trump administration. In 2014, as Bundy’s followers were pointing rifles at law enforcement officers from the Bureau of Land Management, the future president himself told Sean Hannity, “I like him, I like his spirit, his spunk and the people that are so loyal,” adding that Cliven Bundy “ought to go out and cut a great deal.”

Now Cliven Bundy’s own lawyer could be headed for a plum job in the Trump administration — overseeing the very agency she and her former client have spent a lifetime trying to undermine. Attorney Karen Budd-Falen is rumored to be at the top of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s list to run the Bureau of Land Management.

Continue reading

Plan to grow Las Vegas includes monument protection

Las Vegas officials have a new vision for developing a unique piece of land surrounded by sensitive land packed with environmental and cultural resources.

The plan sets out expectations for future development of 1,000 acres situated between the Tule Springs Fossil Beds National Monument, Paiute tribal lands and the Las Vegas Wash, a channel that drains water from the valley into Lake Mead.

The plan conceives of “villages” with pockets of development separated by open spaces with open wash corridors and connected by walking, bike and equestrian trails at the northwestern reaches of the city’s Ward 6.

“Please send your money immediately to Ward 6,” Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman quipped last week, before the City Council approved the plan.

The city’s plan for the site establishes guidelines for future building in the quickly growing area, with green space buffers and open wash corridors, to curb the impact of development on the surrounding natural areas.

Continue reading