OPINION: Keep The Public In Public Lands

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Dear Editor:

As someone who has lived, hunted, photographed and recreated in Sweetwater County for 30 years, I have appreciated the efforts of local, state, and the federal government to include public input as a vital part of the land and wildlife management process.  It’s not a perfect system, by any means, but it has ensured that local voices – those who know these landscapes and the wildlife that live here – are included.  

I am concerned that will change under Representative Liz Cheney’s recent proposals to rush the Wilderness Study Area process with top-down decision making.  

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Local citizens, in conjunction best practices and sound science, are essential for sound management.  

I’d like to see that our county commissioners make sure that we the people are part of the process before making any recommendations about how to manage our public lands.  They will be discussing this matter at their next meeting on Tuesday, February 20.   

But more importantly, we the people need to oppose the federal overreach from Representative Cheney.  This attempt to leave the public our of public lands management is not the sort of representation we need in Washington.  

We can come up with the best solutions here in Southwest Wyoming and should be allowed the ability to do so.

Thank you –

Michele Irwin

Green River, WY