SALT LAKE CITY, Feb. 3, 2017 (Gephardt Daily) — Utah Gov. Gary Herbert on Friday signed concurrent resolution HCR011, asking President Trump to rescind the Bears Ears National Monument designation.
In a Facebook post, Herbert said:
“I join with the Utah Legislature in urging the new Administration to rescind the national monument at#BearsEars. These lands deserve our protection, but a unilateral monument designation is not the way to do it.”
The resolution, sponsored by Rep. Greg Hughes and Sen. Wayne Niederhauser, opposes the move by President Obama “limiting public access to 1.35 million acres in San Juan County” by designating the area a national monument.
It cites the opposition of Native American groups with historical ties to the area, the opposition of “the entire San Juan County Commission,” which unanimously signed a resolution against the monument, and the opposition of every governmental entity within San Juan County.
The Utah Legislature passed a resolution in 2016, opposing the creation of the Bears Ears National Monument, and Gov. Herbert wrote to President Obama prior to that, urging him not to use the Antiquities Act to create another monument in the state.
The Antiquities Act goes back to 1906, when it was passed by Congress and signed by President Theodore Roosevelt, giving the president authority to create, by proclamation, national monuments from federal lands. Its purpose is to protect areas of the country that have major natural or cultural features, and has been used many times since it was passed.