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Public Meeting On Transfer Of National Bison Range Tonight

Bison at the National Bison Range.
USFWS
/
There’s a public meeting in Pablo tonight about the proposed transfer of the National Bison Range to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.";

There’s a public meeting in Pablo tonight about the proposed transfer of the National Bison Range to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.

The Range is currently managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which supports legislation the tribes have drafted to give them management authority.

Rich Janssen, head of the natural resources department for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes says, they’re ready.

"Our wildlife program is top-notch. We have the tools and the capabilities to manage this bison range in perpetuity, and I think when that occurs, this will undoubtedly improve what you see at the bison range at this time," Janssen said.

There is opposition to the Tribes’ plans. Skip Palmer, a former Range employee, is a plaintiff in a lawsuit to stop the transfer.

"They’re introducing something that’s illegal," Palmer says. "It shouldn’t go to Congress because it’s illegal to even get that point."

At tonight’s meeting, Tribal attorneys will present and explain the draft legislation. Afterwards, the public will have a chance to talk to Tribal Natural Resources Department and legal staff, and submit public comments. The deadline for all public comments is July 15. 

Click here to learn more and/or comment online.

The meeting is scheduled for 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. tonight at the Johnny Arlee and Victor Charlo Theatre at Salish Kootenai College, 58138 Highway 93,  in Pablo. 

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