Misleading on monument...
Apr 04, 2013 | 2076 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
With regards to the letter in last week’s T-I from Dirk and Brenda Sprunt, titled “Not Roads to Nowhere,” they are either totally misinformed or are trying to deliberately mislead your readers.

In listing the roads that “COULD” be closed to vehicle traffic, about the only one that they missed in the Four Corners region is U.S. 191. The Sprunts apparently have no understanding of what happens when a national monument is created.

A good example is what followed after the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument was created by President Clinton under the authority of the Antiquities Act.

First, a Greater Canyonlands would, in all likelihood, be placed under the management of the Bureau of Land Management, as Grand Staircase was. Then there would be a five-year process to decide how the monument will be managed, with comments and input by any individual or organization wanting to be involved. During that time, no roads would be closed, and no campgrounds would be closed.

After the management plan is developed, then and only then would any roads or routes be closed. It is highly unlikely that any roads that are currently being used by the Sprunts or other folks who drive those backcountry routes would be closed.

The only thing that would be immediately put off limits within the monument boundaries would be further leasing by the extractive industries – no mining for potash, no drilling for oil and gas. If the Sprunts really enjoy all the beauty of the Greater Canyonlands area, I doubt if they would like to drive through a landscape that has been torn up by mining operations and dotted with fenced-off drill rigs.

If that’s what they want, they should do their four-wheeling in Uintah County.

—Mike Binyon


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