SALT LAKE CITY — More than 2,000 people rallied at the Utah State Capitol Saturday in support of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments.
Last month President Donald Trump issued an executive order to review all large national monument designations dating back to 1996. On Sunday, Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke comes to Utah to conduct a review and subsequent recommendation.
Never in the history of the United States has a president taken a national monument away. So the number one goal of Saturday’s rally was to get the attention of Zinke.
“That he’ll listen, that he’ll understand that we are all here trying, and that we care this much,” said Brooke Newbold of Salt Lake City.
However, all of Utah’s Federal Delegation has said there is a way to protect these sites without declaring them a national monument. And state lawmakers like Rep. Mike Noel, R-Kanab, are also weighing in.
“Focus on the resources that are there, focus on the archaeology, and not just take a big wide swath of 2,000 square miles and call it a national monument; that’s crazy,” Noel said.
Both Bears Ears and Grande Staircase-Escalante are in Noel’s district, District 73. He said making them national monuments has done more harm than good.
“It’s like being in a city and you can’t get any kind of zoning waver, you can’t get a pipeline in, you can’t get a power line in,” Noel said.
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Written by ROBERT BOYD, Fox13Now.com
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