Proposed Presidential Budget Has Potential to Affect Public Lands

President Trump released his second proposed budget on February 12, 2018, and among the line items taking a hit is public lands. Funding for the Department of the Interior (“DOI”) is expected to be impacted by 17%. While the DOI will be impacted, the proposed budget does include $18 billion for the anticipated reorganization of […]

California Congressman: Slow Down Permits! Introduces Bill Targeting Approved But Unimplemented Permits to Drill

Last week, California Representative Alan Lowenthal (D) introduced HR 4103 (2017), also known as the “Having Open Access to Relevant Data Act” or the “HOARD Act.” The legislation specifically targets applicants who have obtained Permits to Drill on federal lands, but had not begun timely drilling. The HOARD Act is in response to the Bureau […]

BLM to Hold Public Hearings on Sage Grouse While Watchdog Group Sues for Public Records

This week the BLM announced its plans to hold public hearings in November to allow for public comment regarding the agency’s decision to reopen 98 federal land use plans that were put in place to protect the greater sage grouse. Meanwhile, a watchdog group filed a federal lawsuit against the Interior Department, claiming the agency […]

House Panel Approves Bills Addressing the ESA

The House Natural Resource Committee approved five bills addressing the Federal Endangered Species Act on October 4, 2017. Each bill was limited in scope and addressed different aspects of the ESA. H.R. 717 adds the review of economic cost of listing a species as a consideration under the ESA. Under this provision, the FWS or […]

New Federal Order Limits Length and Time of NEPA Studies

On August 31, a memo from the Interior Deputy Secretary David Bernhard was made public and directed that the Department’s environmental impact statements (“EIS”) to not be more than 150 pages, or 300 pages if the project is unusually complex. The Interior Department imposed this controversial new restriction citing a need to reduce paperwork. Additionally, […]

Department of the Interior Issues Order Streamlining NEPA Analysis for Energy Projects.

In response to President Trump’s August 15, 2017 Executive Order directing administrative agencies to review and approve infrastructure approvals in a more expeditious manner, the Department of the Interior issued Order No. 3355 imposing page and time limits on Environmental Impact Statements. On August 15, 2017, Deputy Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt issued Order […]

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