Public Lands and the Enviornment

Public Land is your land – it is my land – and it is not for sale to special interests. 

Local citizen input should be maintained in the wilderness study areas.

Public land is for the use and enjoyment of You – the owner – and not special interests; yet both Your use and commercial use can coexist – if not You should have priority.

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Public land should not be turned over to the state. The state can not afford to manage it.  The State has shown that they can not take care of it once they get it.

Right now local government entities are trying to prohibit your access to your Public land managed by the BLM and Bureau of Reclamation land (Heart Mountain Irrigation District, Powell Tribune 3/20/18).

Irrigation districts are a subdivision of the State of Wyoming and as such should not be preventing access to lands owned by the BLM or Bureau of Reclamation.

I would propose that all major irrigation district right of ways be opened for non-motorized use by the public. This would open hundreds, if not thousands, of miles of already constructed and maintained trails to hiking, biking, snow shoeing, cross country skiing, etc.  This would greatly enhance off season recreational opportunities.

Since many of these right of ways are crossing private land that is currently blocking access to public lands, it would open these public lands to public use.

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One of the greatest joys I had as a child was going camping with my parents or grandparents. Public lands contributed to many of those childhood experiences and led to my love of hunting, fishing, and the outdoors.

With Wyoming owning millions of acres of land it is a crime to take your children and grandchildren camping on Your state land. You can receive a $750 fine and 6 months in jail.

Your Representative voted against Legislation that would have allowed YOU to use YOUR land (2016 HB 106).

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You have a First Amendment rights to speak, peaceably assemble, and protest, especially on public land. In 2018 Your Representative voted support out of state business special interest groups and criminalize your exercise of your rights (2018 SF 74).

Your church or other organizations you belonged to could have been fined up to $100,000 for supporting your or other members in the exercise of your rights.

In the past few years major coal companies filed for bankruptcy leaving over $1.8 Billion in unsecured reclamation costs to Your public lands because of the state policy that allows self bonding. Another coal company just filed for bankruptcy, so here we go again.

Federal judges required bonding as a part of their reorganization.   These companies are now trying to get the state to reauthorize self bonding again.

In Wyoming there are currently over 1400 abandoned wells that will never be put back into production.

Today there are 10,000 applications for permits to drill new wells in the Powder Basin alone.

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Your Legislature needs to act to protect Your environment and Your state treasury by requiring that adequate third party reclamation bonding is in place before any permits are issued. If Colorado and Texas can require bonding for the same companies, so can Wyoming. 

We must protect and promote our Public Lands for future generations to enjoy.

YOU are worth Fighting For! 

Mike 

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                                        Paid for by Mike Specht, 24 Hail Basin Rd, Clark WY 82435