Rep. Tipton: BLM Relocation a Great Show of Collaboration
WASHINGTON D.C. – Today, the Department of Interior released the details of the plan to relocate the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) headquarters to Grand Junction, Colorado. The plan will also relocate additional personnel to other state offices across the West. Congressman Scott Tipton (CO-03), a longtime advocate of moving the BLM West who has worked on the issue since 2016, applauded the decision and the efforts put forth by local, state and federal officials to make the move possible.
“I could not be happier that the BLM selected Grand Junction as the location for its headquarters,” said Tipton. “The West is home to 99 percent of federal lands and the local input provided to the BLM from our constituents will no doubt improve how federal lands are managed. Moving the BLM West originated from a series of meetings and townhalls in my district and collaboration between all levels of government led to the final decision. I am thankful for the tireless work of everyone involved in making this move a reality. I congratulate Grand Junction and look forward to visiting the new headquarters soon.”
Secretary of Interior David Bernhardt indicated that the moving the BLM headquarters West is necessary to shift the federal land-making decision power back to the states.
"A meaningful realignment of our operations is not simply about where functions are performed; rather, it is rooted in how changes will better respond to the needs of the American people,” said Bernhardt. “Under our proposal, every Western state will gain additional staff resources. This approach will play an invaluable role in serving the American people more efficiently while also advancing the Bureau of Land Management’s multiple-use mission. Shifting critical leadership positions and supporting staff to western states -- where an overwhelming majority of federal lands are located -- is not only a better management system, it is beneficial to the interest of the American public in these communities, cities, counties and states."
Sharing Tipton’s praise for the efforts behind the move and the work by various officials and organizations was Robin Brown, Executive Director of the Grand Junction Economic Partnership.
"Today is a great day for Grand Junction. Our community has worked very hard over the last several years to build a place that is thriving, inclusive and good for business. The decision to move BLM here is confirmation that our efforts are paying off and our values resonate across the country," said Brown. "We are grateful to Congressman Tipton and all of the people who've advocated for Grand Junction during this process."
Tipton spearheaded the BLM West relocation plan in the House when he introduced legislation in the 115th Congress to authorize the move. House appropriators included $10.5 million for the Interior Department to proceed with the move in fiscal year 2019.
In a letter addressed to the House Committee on Natural Resources outlining the details of the relocation plan, the Interior Department announced that 27 officials would be relocated to Grand Junction including the BLM director, deputy director and other support staff.