On Wednesday, July 27 at 3 p.m., Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) will chair a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee field hearing at San Juan High School in Blanding regarding the potential Bears Ears National Monument designation.
Governor Gary Herbert and House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (UT) will testify before the committee.
Additional witnesses include Chester Johnson, Aneth Chapter of the Navajo Nation; Lewis Singer, Blue Mountain Diné; and Bruce Adams, San Juan County Commissioner.
“When it comes to how the federal government wishes to dispose of its land in Utah, Utahns deserve to be heard,” Lee said. “This field hearing will provide Utahns a forum to share their views on a possible Bears Ears monument designation.
“Ideally, President Obama would hold off and allow a legislative compromise to move forward. Hopefully this hearing will push them towards that course of action.”
“We are prepared to work with Congress and the president to get the Public Lands Initiative signed into law,” Herbert said. “The PLI would provide protections to the Bears Ears area in a common-sense way without the bitterness and resentment that we have seen firsthand when a president unilaterally declares a national monument.”
“Native Utahns have long been asking for greater ability to manage and control the public lands within the borders of the state,” Bishop said. “The President can’t give them that, only Congress can. That’s the way it is under the law of the land. The Public Lands Initiative is the only way this will come to pass.”