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Public Land Advocates React To Planned Hamilton Land Use Workshop

Organizers bringing Wyoming-based property rights attorney Karen Budd-Falen to Hamilton this weekend say tickets are going fast.

Budd-Falen's critics, meanwhile, say they'll attend the weekend workshop to make it clear that public lands should stay in public hands.

“People love their public lands and they're going to make that known,” Montana Wildlife Federation Conservation Director Nick Gevock said. “She’s represented Cliven Bundy, she wrote this land-use plan in New Mexico that was all about federal land takeovers. She’s one of the key architects of these efforts to take over our federal lands. Montanans have been very clear on where they stand on that issue. It’s just disappointing because it distracts from good constructive efforts that are taking place right now.” 

Budd-Falen is an outspoken critic of the Bureau of Land Management. She’s also on President Trump’s short list to lead the agency.

Budd-Falen’s supporters say she specializes in creating plans that give local government more say in federal land-use policy decisions.

Her workshop runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Saturday at the Hamilton Middle School auditorium. The venue holds 250 people.

Hamilton’s Terry Nelson tells Montana Public Radio that about 200 tickets have been sold so far, at $10 a head.

Edward O'Brien is Montana Public Radio's Associate News Director.
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