Professor Mark Squillace, the Director of the Natural Resources Law Center at University of Colorado Law School brought this to my attention with regard to our interest in a land law review. Check the NRLC website for more details and registration information as the time grows closer.
The Past, Present, and Future of Our Public Lands
Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the Public Land Law Review Commissions’
Report – One Third of Our Nation’s Lands
NRLC Martz Summer Conference 2010, June 2‐4, 2010
The Natural Resources Law Center is proud to announce its 31st annual summer
conference, which will examine the past, present and future of our public lands as we
celebrate the 40th anniversary of the 1970 Public Land Law Review Commission’s Report –One Third of Our Nation’s Lands. Please join us as we bring together past and present
agency officials, policymakers, lawyers, and interested citizens for what promises to be an informative and provocative program.
Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of One Third of Our Nation’s Lands
In 1964 Congress established the Public Land Law Review Commission to review the public land laws of the United States and to determine whether revisions were necessary. The Commission was comprised of six members appointed by the President, six by the U.S. Senate and six by the U.S. House. Congressman Wayne Aspinall of Colorado served as chair. In 1970, the Commission issued its report – One Third of Our Nation’s Lands. This influential report became a blueprint for much future public lands legislation including, most notably, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act and the National Forest Management Act.
As we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of this seminal document, it is time to reflect on
the need for a new Commission and a new report to address the challenges for our public
lands in the 21st century. The NRLC’s Martz summer conference for 2010 will offer a venue to consider this important idea.
Interesting story. from the Billings Gazette.. I noticed a couple of things..
First, the FS process looks good- so having a cooperators group is clearly something that can work well. Right now it is not a requirement of any rule but something that makes some sense (at least it is popular in Wyoming).
Second, the BLM seems to be caught up in concerns of “pre-decisionality”, which is a concern about talking to people violating the NEPA process. Since this is a topic that is worrisome to FS folks, it would be useful to explore further.
My pragmatic view is that you talk to people and they talk to you, throughout the NEPA process. Unless you convene a formal group (without FACA), you don’t have to worry about FACA. At some point, the decision maker has to go behind closed doors and make a decision, and they and their staff bring all the conversations, formal public comment, views of cooperator groups and make a decision.
What really concerns me is that NEPA can become a reason for “not talking” to people, and I don’t think that is the spirit of NEPA. Anyway, perhaps some of you could shed some light on these concerns- you can see some of the issues that can be raised in this news story.