Tipton Blasts Obama Administration for Misuse of Antiquities Act

SCOTT-TIPTON-300Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO), yesterday, issued a statement on President Obama’s use of the Antiquities Act to unilaterally designate a massive 500,000 acre national monument in New Mexico despite local objections, a move that could indicate the presidents intentions for land in Northwest Colorado.  Local citizens and elected officials raised serious concerns over the detrimental economic impact the massive land grab would have on their communities including their ability to sustain and create jobs under the designation, as well as concerns over increased security risks along the U.S.- Mexico border in an area that has seen criminal and drug smuggling activity in the past.  The Ensuring Public Involvement in the Creation of National Monuments Act (H.R. 1459), requires the application of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) whenever the president uses the Antiquities Act to unilaterally establish a national monument over 5,000 acres. This would ensure public participation in the monument designation process.  Tipton issued a statement that said in part, “Perhaps what makes this unilateral action most troubling is that the impacted area in New Mexico signifies what could be just the initial phase to implement an internal Department of the Interior document from 2009, titled Treasured Landscapes. This document includes information that the Administration may take unilateral action to lock-away over 13 million acres in Western States-including the Vermillion Basin in Colorado.”  The Committee continues to seek increased transparency on the Administration’s actions and will oppose efforts to unilaterally lock-up more public land.  Pictured: Scott Tipton

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