Salt Lake City, UT – This morning, the House Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environment Committee voted to favorably pass HCR 1, sponsored by Rep. K. Stratton. HCR 1 expresses legislative support for taking public lands from the protection of the federal government and handing over management to the state. One of the methods advocated in the resolution to accomplish this is the $14 million litigation the legislature has conceptually developed over the past few years.
Chase Thomas, Better Utah’s Policy and Advocacy Counsel, issued the following statement in response:
“Our representatives are showing they are willing to push forward their partisan agenda no matter the cost. Not only does this resolution once again encourage wasting $14 million on an unwinnable lawsuit that could otherwise go to K-12 education, but this vote comes soon after the Outdoor Retailers announced they would be leaving the state because of the state’s attitude toward our public lands. This resolution is further proof our state officials are making no attempt to alter their rhetoric, instead choosing to send a message to the Outdoor Retailers that effectively says, ‘don’t let the door hit you on the way out.’ One would think losing out on an annual $45 million economic impact to the state would give legislators more pause, but it seems their resolve to fight the federal government’s protection of our public lands is winning the day.”