Public Lands Council (PLC) recently welcomed aboard a new executive director in Washington, D.C. In November, Ethan Lane, a fifth-generation Arizonan, took on the task of shepherding the organization through its lobbying efforts on behalf of ranchers with federal land grazing rights.
A remote corner of eastern Oregon has made global headlines this week. Harney County ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond went back to prison last Monday— but that’s not likely what caught the imagination of reporters worldwide. Armed protesters professing support for the Hammonds overtook a federal building on Saturday, Jan.
Oregon ranchers Dwight and Steven Hammond are going back to prison for two range fires they started years ago on their private land that spread onto federal land. Between the two of them, this father and son have already served one year, three months and a day in prison for the fires.
The livestock industry is losing a valuable team member in Washington, DC, according to ranchers WLJ talked to across the West. Public Lands Council’s (PLC’s) Executive Director Dustin Van Liew is moving on after six years in the position. He will be moving to Texas to work for an oil and gas trade association.
“All three” seems to have been the reply from industry leaders, who met last week in Cody, WY. At this year’s annual Public Lands Council (PLC) meeting, the PLC Board of Directors granted a sum of over $450,000 to projects designed to protect, promote and enhance the public land grazing industry.
Death by fire is threatening a growing number of livestock operations in the Northwest. As of Sept. 2, almost 2 million acres of active, large fires raged—mostly in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon. Many of the infernos are less than 50 percent contained, according to the National Inter-agency Fire Center.
Change is in the air on the range—change that could benefit the public land grazing industry. Last winter, Congress directed the BLM and U.S. Forest Service to improve their grazing policies to help stabilize the federal permitting process.
It’s mid-August, and an all-familiar haze has settled into the Northwest. “Smells like money,” said one rural resident of northern California. Indeed, “fire season” seems to be the new timber industry in the West. The U.S. Forest Service now spends over $1 billion annually on fire suppression.
Most citizens hope for a good government that will do the right thing. Perhaps this is why the story of the Hammond family and their fight against the U.S. government is catching the attention of a growing number of American citizens.
Gerri Badden, Public Information Officer U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Oregon Office phone: 503/727-1033 Also, Oregon Representative Greg Walden (R) has invited concerned citizens to email him regarding the Hammond case, which his office is following closely.
A federal judge has spared a Montana ranching family from removing 8,000 head of sheep from their federal range this summer. This is one piece of good news for the Helle family—but the lawsuit by an anti-grazing group is not over.
With the stroke of his pen, President Obama on July 10 designated three new national monuments that together comprise over one million acres. The new “Basin and Range” monument in south-central Nevada covers roughly 704,000 acres or about 1,100 square miles.
An eastern Oregon family with a long history in ranching is fighting to keep its cow/calf operation afloat against an onslaught of blows from the federal government. Two members of the Hammond family have been charged under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 for starting two range fires that ended up on federal land.
The name of the game is politics; not preservation, says the livestock industry of the Obama administration’s latest regulatory move on the greater sage-grouse. Last Monday, industries and a host of local governments submitted protests on the administration’s plans to amp up regulations on 50 million acres of federal land across the West.
The federal land management agencies have finalized new regulations on millions of acres across 10 states—all with the alleged purpose of preventing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) from listing the greater sage-grouse under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The U.S. House of Representatives has made a move to prevent an Endangered Species Act (ESA) listing of the sage-grouse—this time in the name of national defense. Legislators and military officials are concerned that a listing would limit military access to critical facilities and training areas.
Catastrophic wildfire is the number one threat to sage-grouse across a good portion of the West. As such, the U.S. Department of Interior has just released a comprehensive strategy meant to address that threat, particularly in the Great Basin region.