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U.S. Sen. Tom Udall And U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum To BLM: Press Pause On Headquarters Relocation Plan

on August 23, 2019 - 11:43am

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall

From the Office of U.S. Sen. Tom Udall:

  • Citing a lack of meaningful analysis and consultation, Udall & McCollum call on BLM to suspend any efforts to move headquarters and abruptly relocate staff

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum (D-Minn.), the ranking member and chair of the U.S. Senate and House Appropriations Subcommittees on the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, respectively, called on the Department of Interior (DOI) to pause its efforts to reorganize the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), including its plans to relocate hundreds of staff and move the agency’s official headquarters to Grand Junction, Colo.

In their letter, the lawmakers raise serious concerns that the Trump Interior Department’s reorganization proposal appears to be part of a “deliberate effort to dismantle and weaken” BLM. They urged the department to work closely with Congress to create a plan that would strengthen, rather than undercut, the Bureau.

“It appears that the proposal to relocate Bureau headquarters is not based on rigorous financial and organizational analysis, nor is it intended to increase the Bureau’s accountability and improve the management of our nation’s public lands. Instead, we are concerned that the proposal is designed to reduce the Bureau’s effectiveness and relevance. As a result, we object to the Department moving forward with the reorganization of the Bureau and the relocation of its staff,” the lawmakers wrote.

“We call on the Department to immediately suspend its efforts to relocate Bureau functions or positions and to work with Congress and other stakeholders to create a reorganization plan that will actually improve the effectiveness and accountability of the agency and earn bipartisan support,” the lawmakers concluded.

The full text of the letter is available below and HERE.