Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) has introduced the State Grazing Management Authority Act, a bill to allow states to manage grazing programs on federal allotments.
In public lands states, the agricultural community – particularly livestock producers – face unique problems in legally accessing and using the federal public lands within their domain. While many states have been able to streamline their grazing processes and work on the state and local level to make their lands more productive, grazers in public lands states are instead forced to navigate layers of bureaucracy and regulation from federal agencies like the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Forest Service (FS), which are far removed and often unresponsive to their needs.
“These inefficient federal grazing requirements neither increase grazers’ interest in using federal lands, nor result in better land management,” said Sen. Lee. “My bill would instead allow grazers to partner with states – who are both more accountable and responsive to them – to create a more productive and thriving range.”
Specifically, the bill would allow states to enter into cooperative agreements with federal agencies to manage federal grazing allotments. With the increased flexibility and maintenance of range-health standards under the bill, states could take our ailing public lands and help them to thrive.