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S.C.R. 2 Enrolled






Sponsor: Leonard M. Blackham

                  This concurrent resolution of the Legislature and the Governor urges the Federal Bureau
                  of Land Management to allow broad-based vegetation management practices on Bureau of
                  Land Management lands.
                  Be it resolved by the Legislature of the state of Utah, the Governor concurring therein:
                      WHEREAS, although the Bureau of Land Management has historically carried out a
                  rangeland restoration program in Utah, the effort has not kept pace with dynamic changes that are
                  occurring on public lands and among certain ecosystems;
                      WHEREAS, many of the more productive shrublands have been replaced by cheatgrass in
                  areas of high fire frequency or dense stands of pinyon-juniper woodland where fire has been
                      WHEREAS, big game, sage grouse, and a variety of migratory bird populations are
                  dependent on healthy sagebrush ranges for their survival;
                      WHEREAS, noxious weeds and invasive annual grasses are pervasive on many of these
                  sagebrush ranges, setting the stage for an unalterable increase in the frequency of fire and the
                  subsequent loss of productive rangelands for livestock and wildlife;
                      WHEREAS, fish and wildlife populations in Utah are significantly affected by water
                      WHEREAS, watersheds dominated by closed-canopied, pinyon-juniper woodlands lack
                  sufficient herbaceous plant cover to trap, store, and slowly release water to springs, streams, lakes,
                  and reservoirs;
                      WHEREAS, vast areas within these ecosystems have become "ecological dead ends,"
                  where plant communities no longer function to provide healthy watersheds, diverse wildlife
                  habitats, or productive grazing lands;
                      WHEREAS, natural recovery is no longer possible due to loss of seed reserves in the soil,

                  and the introduction of noxious weeds and exotic annual grasses;
                      WHEREAS, mule deer populations for several herd units in the state are currently below the
                  management objectives established by the state Wildlife Board;
                      WHEREAS, herd size is affected by the carrying capacity of the winter range;
                      WHEREAS, a significant amount of the winter ranges in the state are located on Bureau of
                  Land Management land, and management of these lands is key to sustaining healthy big game
                      WHEREAS, a well-planned, long-term restoration program is necessary to prevent the
                  large-scale conversion of diverse, productive shrublands to either annual grasslands or dense stands
                  of pinyon-juniper woodlands, depending on the fire regimen;
                      WHEREAS, the Bureau of Land Management needs to be able to select from the full range
                  of treatment prescriptions, such as mechanical, chemical, fire, and biological treatments, that have
                  proven successful in carrying out restoration projects in Utah;
                      WHEREAS, all adapted species, both native and nonnative, should be considered for use in
                  range restoration projects so that land managers may make adjustments in response to restoration
                  objectives, seed availability, budget constraints, and the need to select species that can compete
                  effectively with invasive weed species;
                      WHEREAS, the Bureau of Land Management should increase its capability for carrying out
                  prescribed burns to meet current and future targets for range restoration work on its lands;
                      WHEREAS, proper planting techniques should be followed when artificial seeding is
                  required to meet restoration objectives; and
                      WHEREAS, vegetation management on Bureau of Land Management land within Utah
                  would be of great benefit to the state:
                      NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Legislature of the state of Utah, the
                  Governor concurring therein, urges the Federal Bureau of Land Management to use broad-based
                  vegetation management practices on Bureau of Land Management lands within Utah.
                      BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this resolution be sent to the Federal Bureau
                  of Land Management, the Utah Department of Natural Resources, and the members of Utah's

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                  congressional delegation.

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