TU urges cooperation on public lands

For Immediate Release

Jan. 21, 2016

Trout Unlimited statement

Contact: Toner Mitchell, 505-231-8860, tmitchell@tu.org

Randy Scholfield, TU communications, 720-375-3961, rscholfield@tu.org

Trout Unlimited urges cooperation on public lands challenges

(Santa Fe)-Hundreds of sportsmen and recreationists gathered at the New Mexico state Capitol Thursday afternoon to show their support for public lands and to oppose efforts by fringe groups like the Bundy clan to seize public lands and transfer them to state or private control.

Toner Mitchell, New Mexico Water and Habitat Program Manager for Trout Unlimited, issued the following statement:

Were proud to stand with other Americans who love our public lands and dont want them seized by fringe interests or sold off to the highest bidder. We want to send a clear message: We wont tolerate hostile takeovers of land that belongs to all Americans, not just a radical minority.

Armed intimidation wont solve a single one of our public lands issues. All the stakeholders of our public landsfederal and state agencies, ranchers, recreationists, local communitiesneed to work together to address the huge challenges facing our public lands, from forest and water management to grazing and wildlife issues.

No, the federal management of our public lands isnt perfect, but we believe stakeholders can work together to find commonsense solutions. The fact is, our national forests in New Mexico are in serious troublethe forests in many areas are overstocked and under attack by insects, riparian habitat is degraded, and soils are eroding and unstable. We have to meet these challenges head on and we can only tackle them by working together. Trout Unlimited urges New Mexico leaders to step up and work constructively with federal managers and citizens on a management roadmap for the future.