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Senate Narrowly Confirms Tracy Stone-Manning To Lead Bureau of Land Management

 Tracy Stone-Manning
University of Montana
Tracy Stone-Manning

The U.S. Senate late Thursday narrowly confirmed Montanan Tracy Stone-Manning as the next director of the Bureau of Land Management.

Montana’s senators split their votes on Stone-Manning’s confirmation with Democrat Jon Tester joining the 47 other Democrats and two independent senators in voting "yes," while Republican Steve Daines was one of 45 GOP members voting "no."

Republicans have been vocal in their opposition. They point to Stone-Manning’s involvement in a 1989 tree-spiking incident in Idaho and the veracity of her testimony before a Senate committee.

Two of Stone-Manning’s friends were convicted in the case and she testified against the men, received immunity from prosecutors and was never charged with any crimes.

Democrats have been just as vocal in their support. Tester said of his former senior aide, “Tracy will bring good old-fashioned Montana common sense to the bureau along with a steadfast dedication to managing our public lands and the thousands of good-paying jobs that depend on them.”

Following Stone-Manning’s confirmation, Daines released a statement saying it’s now up to her to rebuild trust with Montanans and, ”to commit herself to protecting the Montana way of life, Montana energy jobs and proper land management in all decisions that she will make moving forward.”

Her confirmation was praised by wildlife and conservation groups. Collin O’Mara with National Wildlife Federation said, “Tracy has uncommon common sense and an exceptional ability to bring people together to solve seemingly insurmountable problems.”

The BLM is responsible for managing mining, recreation and grazing on 245 million acres of federal land primarily in the U.S. West. The BLM has not had a Senate-confirmed director since the Obama administration.

When Tracy Stone-Manning will be sworn in was unknown as of Friday afternoon.

Copyright 2021 Yellowstone Public Radio. To see more, visit Yellowstone Public Radio.

Kay Erickson has been working in broadcasting in Billings for more than 20 years. She spent well over a decade as news assignment editor at KTVQ-TV before joining the staff at YPR. She is a graduate of Northern Illinois University, with a degree in broadcast journalism. Shortly after graduation she worked in Great Falls where she was one of the first female sports anchor and reporter in Montana.
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