In a decision that shocked and angered residents of Colorado’s Western Slope, bureaucrats at the Bureau of Land Management made the unilateral decision to close down more than 2,000 miles of roads in Western Colorado, cutting off access to future energy exploration sites and restricting access of handicapped people to recreational areas.
But what is really bothering citizens in Mesa County is the BLM’s refusal to give any reason whatsoever for the closure of these roads, other than that it is part of the agency’s ambiguous “resource management plan.” Earlier this month, 250 people gathered at the BLM offices in Grand Junction to protest the regulatory changes made by unaccountable BLM bureaucrats.
Most of these roads are more than 50 years old, and because of that, citizens hoping to maintain access to these areas may have an end run around the regulators. According to an article that ran in the Grand Junction Sentinel, the BLM must treat roads that have been in operation for this length of time as highways, exempting them from being arbitrarily closed through a resource management plan.
Among those pushing back against the BLM is former U.S. Congressman and Mesa County Commissioner Scott McGinnis. The former Congressman had just visited the open space in question when he spoke at the BLM event, and stated that he could see absolutely no abuse of the recreational areas in danger from this ruling. Is there nothing that’s off limits from federal overreach?
Maybe Michael Bloomberg’s statement that there are no roads in Colorado was less him being an arrogant jerk, and more of a prediction?