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giftedviz.com January 21, 2018


Trump defends scaling back Utah monuments

05 December 2017, 03:09 | Darnell Patrick

Getty Images and AP File

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President Donald Trump is on his way to Utah.

Leaked maps revealed proposals to shrink boundaries at Bears Ears national park from 1.3 million acres to 201,000 acres while Grand Staircase Escalante will be slashed by half to just under one million acres.

Mr Trump will travel to Salt Lake City to make the announcement at a rally on Monday. "They don't know your land". Previous presidents have reduced the size of national monuments more than a dozen times.

The move will likely trigger lawsuits from activists and environmental groups, who see this move as an attempt to give public land to private corporations. He cited the 1906 Antiquities Act, which past Presidents have used to designate National Monuments, to scale back instead.

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The five tribes have said they will bring a legal case against the administration - the outcome could redefine the president's powers to use the Antiquities Act.

There are now more than 125 designated national monuments, encompassing everything from a coral reef in the Caribbean to an African burial ground in New York State to a barrier island off the coast of Alaska. Trump is the first president to shrink a monument in decades.

"Trump's unprecedented, illegal action is a brutal blow to our public lands, an affront to Native Americans and a disgrace to the presidency", said Randi Spivak, the public lands program director at the nonprofit Center for Biological Diversity.

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