The ruination of Lionsback…

Front-page news reignites my dread about the ruination of Lionsback. I wonder how many Moabites are as disgusted, disillusioned, disappointed, and, yes, angry, as I am.

I wanted to know how this happened and when. I did learn that it took place before I came here. I would have been protesting if this was being proposed today. How was the state School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA) given the OK to sell off this precious property for development? There comes a point where we have to yell, “STOP! NOT HERE! NOT EVER!”

Logically, Lionsback should have become a part of Sand Flats Recreation area. Sand Flats was recognized for the treasure that it is back in 1995 and is managed under a unique partnership between the Bureau of Land Management, Grand County and the Moab community. A true cooperative success story that we should all be proud of. Conversely, we should be ashamed of losing Lionsback.

For those of you who are mystified by the political process that allow these things to happen I urge you to research and learn. A good place to start is Jim Stiles’ “The Canyon Country Zephyr” archives: June-July 2006, “Subdivision Frenzy…Why Worry Now?” explaining how the developers simply needed Moab city to annex the SITLA’s Lionsback property to move ahead; Dec. 2008-Jan. 2009, “SITLA Looks Ahead” — you’ll read more about the workings of SITLA and Lionsback, also Cloudrock on Johnson’s Up-On-Top, plus the Spanish Valley roads to nowhere and more.

Learn all about trust lands in an internet article entitled: “The State Trust Lands” by Jon Souder and Sally Fairfax.

—Ann Ertel

Moab