Wednesday, July 15, 2020


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    Trump budget proposal includes $13B for Interior

    Featured Stories

    Tales of Trails: Savor spectacular views from thrilling Shafer Trail

    In the 1890s, Moab pioneer brothers Frank M. And John S. Shafer developed the route from what had been a Native American pathway connecting what is now Canyonlands National Park to the river below.

    At 99, Moab man is knighted by France

    “The French people will never forget his courage and devotion to the great cause of freedom,”

    Leaving Guatemala, Part 4: ‘A year in the land of eternal spring’

    Though I planned to return someday, whether as a Peace Corps volunteer or not, this experience proved that even the best-laid plans go awry.

    Leaving Guatemala, Part 3: Sudden departure came with painful goodbyes

    Men donned wooden masks and numerous layers of sweatshirts and ponchos then proceeded to hit each other with whips as they danced around the town square.

    Leaving Guatemala Part 2: There wasn’t enough time to say goodbye

    To say I woke up on the Monday morning of the evacuation...
    Doug McMurdo
    Doug McMurdo
    Editor Doug McMurdo reports on news out of the Moab City Center, tourism, courts, change of government and more.
    The U.S. Department of the interior building in Washington, D.C. Courtesy photo

    President Donald Trump proposed a $12.8 billion 2021 budget for the Department of the Interior, including a $50 million initiative that would begin to transform and build a more stable and permanent wildland firefighting workforce to better align with the challenges of prolonged periods of wildfire activity and the need to more aggressively implement active vegetation management, according to a statement from the department.

    Overall, $1 billion is being requested specifically for wildland fire programs, that in part implement active vegetation management practices in an effort to reduce hazardous fuel loads and suppress active wildfires on public lands.

    “In 2019, we treated over 1.4 million acres, but we must recognize that the length of our fire season is getting longer; fires are large; and risks are higher. Therefore, we must innovate to strengthen our wildland fire and active management capability,” said Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt. “We are also extremely appreciative of (the Monday, Feb. 10) proposal to once again include the creation of the Public Lands Infrastructure Fund, and we remain optimistic that Congress will finally address the tremendous backlog caused by insufficient funds to appropriately maintain our national parks, our Indian schools and Fish and Wildlife Service and Bureau of Land Management facilities.”

    In addition to these highlights, the budget is an attempt to strike a balance between development and conservation; fulfills trust responsibilities for Alaska Native and Tribal communities; looks to improve visitor experiences at our nation’s natural and historical areas; enables reliable water supplies and delivery to people in the West; and makes strategic investments to increase broadband access in rural areas, critical mineral development and law enforcement.

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