Republicans and Democrats disagree on a lot of issues, but protecting deserts in Southern California doesn’t seem to be one of them.
Legislation was introduced this month in both chambers of Congress, by members of both major parties, with the goal of protecting 716,000 acres of regional desert, adding a swath nearly as big as Rhode Island to regional land that’s already under protection. New protected zones would include off-highway vehicle recreation areas and wilderness, and an expansion of several National Parks.
The identical bills, sponsored by Rep. Paul Cook, R-Yucca Valley, in the House of Representatives and California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat, in the Senate, are the result of years of work with the off-roading community, conservationists and local governments. For different reasons, all of those interests want to see the protections in place.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has restored grazing permits for the Hammond family from Oregon after losing the right to graze following federal charges that were later pardoned.
The announcement was made on Jan. 28 that Hammond Ranches would be able to graze their BLM allotments again. The BLM had stripped the right to graze after Dwight and Steven Hammond were convicted of felony arson in 2012. They were sentenced to five years imprisonment under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996.
The Bureau of Land Management revealed today it is contemplating an overhaul of its law enforcement program — from the location of its headquarters to whether rangers should wear visible flak jackets.
Deputy Director Brian Steed discussed the pending modifications in testimony before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests and Mining.
“We’re quite active right now in reviewing all policies regarding our law enforcement,” Steed told Utah Sen. Mike Lee (R). An outspoken critic of BLM law enforcement, Lee has endorsed dissolving the agency’s police force and instead relying on local officers or FBI agents.
Steed provided few details about the potential reorganization — which comes as Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is contemplating a broader overhaul of the entire department, as well as a potential relocation of BLM headquarters to a Western state.
Steed testified that BLM officials are evaluating whether the agency’s law enforcement “should be restructured to better fit organizational needs.”
“We absolutely are trying to increase our accountability to the American people by having the right personnel at the helms. We’re absolutely trying to change policy to make sure that we’re as accountable and responsive and as good at our job as possible,” Steed said at the hearing.
He noted that BLM has directed its officers to focus on “casework with direct ties to public lands,” including cross-border smuggling activities and the theft of mineral materials and historical objects.
Environmentalists have filed suit against federal regulators over protections for eight rivers in California, including one that originates in Nevada, the Amargosa River.
Congress designated portions of the Amargosa and seven other rivers as wild and scenic in 2009, but the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management never completed comprehensive management plans for them as required by law, according to the Center for Biological Diversity.
The Tucson, Arizona-based group sued the two agencies in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles late last month, arguing that the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act required the development of management plans for the rivers within three years of their designation.
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA — The Trump administration is supporting bipartisan legislation that would take as much as $18 billion in revenue from energy produced on federal lands and waters to establish a fund specifically for national park restoration.
The bill follows the blueprint laid out in Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and President Donald Trump’s budget proposal, the public lands infrastructure fund, according to a statement Wednesday from the Interior Department.
The legislation was introduced in the Senate by Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Angus King, I-Maine, and in the House of Representatives by Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Kurt Schrader, D-Ore.
This bill fulfills one of the priorities laid out in Trump’s legislative framework for rebuilding America’s infrastructure.
Chris Kortlander, who last year made headlines by detailing the terrible human costs, including many suicides, resulting from the actions of aggressive and unaccountable Bureau of Land Management (BLM) agents, has written a book about his own harrowing experiences with the agency. Arrow to the Heart first recounts several controversial BLM debacles which occurred during the Obama years, including the Bundy Ranch and Gibson Guitar raids, and the deadly Utah sting, Operation Cerberus, which led to the suicide deaths of several men in the Four Corners region. Kortlander also takes readers back thirteen years, to the BLM raid of the Custer Battlefield Museum, which he founded, and the abuses and lies that nearly destroyed his life. But more than just an expose’ of historical federal abuses, Kortlander also explores the dark corners of corrupt Deep State machinations.
There are two sides to every story.
Four years ago the Bureau of Land Management locked the gate to Little Ash Springs north of Alamo for what was described as a couple of weeks due to a crumbling wall on a manmade pool. It remains closed.
Recently, the Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke told the Las Vegas newspaper, “This is exactly why the federal government needs to clean up our act. I’m not in the business of locking the public out.”
He added, “We need to work with local communities and be better neighbors …”
Speaking of neighbors, Joe and Andrea Barker own the 13-acre tract adjacent to and downstream from the 1-acre BLM-controlled Little Ash Springs. Their property is known as Big Ash Springs and has 50 springs feeding 94-degree water into meandering shallow rivulets that are home to two endangered species — the White River springfish and the Pahranagat roundtail chub found only in the Ash Springs system.
“Illegal migrants, human traffickers, and drug smugglers, whether crossing by foot or using vehicles cause substantial damage to the natural and cultural resources found on federal lands. Tremendous amounts of human waste and garbage are left on borderlands every year. Medical supplies, diapers, clothing, and even broken-down cars are all left behind.”
On February 9, the House Committee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing on existing regulatory impediments to securing the southern border. One of the topics addressed is the checkerboard of ‘sensitive’ wildland designations in states along the border with Mexico. The Border Patrol and other law enforcement agencies are unable to gain ‘operational control’ of large regions of the border due to such designations and their accompanying prohibitions on access.
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.”
It has been rumored that the Bundy Families have engaged a professional Public Relations expert to provide once-daily Trial Updates during the upcoming trial. These updates are expected to be shorter and more concise than typical updates that we […]
What Abraham Bundy and his sons saw from the crest of the ridge where they topped out in June 1916, looking east toward Mt. Trumbull, was a vast valley with stirrup-high grass that year. What they did not account for is that the high annual rainfall that had blessed the Arizona Strip for several decades, making it vast grassland, would not last forever. Although there was not a single source of live water in the entire valley, Bundys staked the future of their families on making a go of it there.
And to a large extent the same basic story likewise describes the people and place LaVoy Finicum came from at Cane Beds, on the Northern edge of The Strip. LaVoy’s historic Tuckup Grazing Allotment along the Northern edge of the Grand Canyon stems back to the earliest history of Texans and Bundys grazing cattle and competing for forage on The Strip, as described in the book.
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
Atrocities in Gloria Navarro’s Federal Court Room today have the Bundy Ladies and everyone there dumbfounded and appalled. What is happening? What Can We do?
Terri Linnell is known as “Mama Bear” to the Patriot community. She has been an activist since 2008, when her sleeping giant started to awaken. Terri has been to Washington DC three times for redress of grievances, and participated in the Bundy Ranch Standoff in Nevada.
She is known as “Betsy Ross” to the FBI community. She was given that name by the FBI when she agreed to be an informant at the Malheur Wildlife Protest in Burns, Oregon, during January 2016. Linnell later testified for the defense, stating clearly it was just a protest, protected under the first amendment.
Terri’s time as an informant was under 6 months, yet she will give you some insight to the inner workings of the FBI, and their handling of “Confidential Human Sources” and how the government is absolutely watching citizens.
I [name] do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
This article from August 2014, not long after the 2014 Bundy Ranch Standoff in Nevada, details a UC Berkeley Study that puts a great deal of responsibility for the escalated, violent results of Protests, at the feet of Law Enforcement and their presentation into the event.
Defense lawyers for the four Oregon standoff defendants set for trial this week want Pete Santilli, who awaits prosecution in Nevada, to be flown to Oregon to testify on their behalf and to impeach another co-defendant, Blaine Cooper, now expected to be a government witness.
Jury selection starts Tuesday morning for the remaining four defendants accused of federal conspiracy, weapons and depredation of government property charges stemming from the 41-day seizure of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last winter.
Lord, please guide us, please humble us, please let us have clear faith and understanding not only of our own desires, trials and tribulations, but those of others, both friend and foe, and that we may treat each with the same love and understanding.
“This message is dedicated to our Patriot Political Prisoners and their Families in appreciation for their unending sacrifice and faith in themselves and others that we all may make a difference with each action we may take.”
A lousy mood and inflammatory debate can provoke anyone to transform from a friendly offline Jekyll into an evil online Hyde, according to new Stanford and Cornell research.
It’s widely assumed that Internet “trolls” are different from the rest of us. Conventional wisdom holds that they’re innately sociopathic individuals whose taunting, derogatory or provocative internet posts disrupt cordial discussion.
But new research, published as part of the upcoming 2017 Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing, reaches a different conclusion: Under the right circumstances, anyone — even ordinary, good people — can become a troll, changing their online behavior in radical ways.
We investigated allegations that a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) supervisory agent used his official position to provide preferential treatment for family members attending the 2015 Burning Man event in Nevada. The allegations also indicated that the agent intervened improperly in a 2015 hiring process for a special agent position that facilitated the hiring of his friend instead of other qualified applicants.
We found that the agent violated Federal ethics rules when he used his influence with Burning Man officials to obtain tickets and special passes for his family. He also directed on-duty BLM law enforcement employees to escort his family in BLM-procured vehicles, drove his BLM vehicle with his girlfriend, and directed his employee to make hotel reservations for his guests. We also confirmed the supervisory agent’s intervention in the special agent hiring process to benefit a friend.
We forwarded our report to the U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management for action, and we received a response from the Assistant Secretary.
Prosecutors in Las Vegas filed a Motion In Limine late Tuesday in the case of The United States vs Cliven Bundy et al — in hopes that Nevada District Court Judge Gloria Navarro – will allow the Government to “cover-up” any wrong doing agents in the Bureau Of Land Management – who conducted the Bundy cattle impoundment in April of 2014 – may have committed.
“It’s a shocking blatant attempt by the Government to cover-up the brutal conduct of BLM agents that caused a near catastrophe in Bunkerville, Nevada during the impoundment of rancher Cliven Bundy’s cattle,” says a defense attorney representing one of the defendants in the case.
The motion is a draconian attempt at best to “protect” government agents from being exposed to further scrutiny during the upcoming Nevada trials in which they will be under-oath to tell the truth.
The Central Intelligence Agency on Wednesday unveiled revised rules for collecting, analyzing and storing information on American citizens, updating the rules for the information age and publishing them in full for the first time.
The guidelines are designed “in a manner that protects the privacy and civil rights of the American people,” CIA General Counsel Caroline Krass told a briefing at the agency’s headquarters in Langley, Virginia.
I have written a number of articles, under the heading of “Burns Chronicles” the have exposed informants that participate with the FBI in obtaining information about the goings on, both inside and outside, during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, near Burns, Oregon.
The government has, with a revised “Protective Order”, made it near criminal to read or share some of those articles, as the may contain what the Court has deemed “illegal materials”.
Warning: downloading these files may subject you to “Contempt of Court” or “other legal proceedings. Download at your own risk and peril.
Informant articles as of January 5, 2017 (pdf format)
Informant articles as of January 5, 2017 (Kindle format)
U.S. District Judge Anna J. Brown, in a written order issued Wednesday, gave Gary Hunt 24 hours to remove all posts he shared online that contained information from sensitive FBI reports on informants used during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.
The judge also ordered Hunt, a California man with ties to a network of militia groups who has posted articles about the informants and quoted excerpts of the FBI records on his Outpost of Freedom website, to stop doing so immediately.
If Hunt fails to comply with the judge’s order once he is personally served with it by the FBI, prosecutors may pursue a contempt of court or other enforcement proceeding in the appropriate court jurisdiction, Brown wrote.