Ex-BLM head stood to benefit from sale of Henderson land, watchdog reports

SOURCE:  Lasvegassun.com

The inspector general’s report said Abbey’s “involvement in the land sale began early in the process,” as he “conversed or met with Ford on several occasions” before and during the initial sales efforts. According to the report:

• On March 4, 2011, Ford emailed Abbey, saying, “Glad we had time to catch up yesterday in Reno and happy we were able to visit candidly about issues of mutual interest (sic).”

abbey_t198 Bob Abbey

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Bob Abbey, former head of the federal Bureau of Land Management, was “personally and substantially involved” in selling Henderson land for a multi-venue sports complex to developer Chris Milam and “stood to benefit personally” from the sale, says a new report from an internal government watchdog.

The Department of the Interior’s Office of Inspector General said in a report published Tuesday that it found “no evidence” that Milam bought the 480-acre project site from the BLM “with the intent to flip it,” as Henderson city officials alleged in a civil fraud case against the developer in 2013.

But, investigators said, Abbey had much to gain from Milam’s purchase, thanks to Abbey’s “business connection” to real estate consultant and former longtime BLM official Mike Ford.

Abbey and Ford are partners at Las Vegas-based consulting firm Abbey, Stubbs & Ford LLC. Abbey joined the firm in 2005 but resigned in 2009, when President Barack Obama appointed him to run the BLM. He rejoined the consulting group in 2012 after he retired from the BLM, which manages federal lands and is part of the Interior Department.

Ford met Milam in 2011 and represented the Texas investor during the land-purchase process. Ford’s consulting firm was set to receive a $528,000 payment if Milam finalized the transaction, Tuesday’s report said.

But U.S. officials terminated the sale after Milam agreed, as part of a legal settlement with City Hall, to never do business again in Henderson and to pay the city $4.5 million.

His proposed Las Vegas National Sports Complex — comprising an indoor arena and three stadiums south of the M Resort — never materialized. According to Tuesday’s report, he never paid the half-million-dollar fee to Ford, either.

stadium_henderson_rendering02_t653

Artist rendering of the proposed Las Vegas National Sports Complex in Henderson.

Investigators asked Abbey if he benefited from the land sale. According to the report, Abbey said that he hadn’t and that he didn’t receive any payments from the consulting firm as a result of the sale.

“That was one of the issues that I went back and looked at,” Abbey said, according to the report. “I wanted to make sure that when I looked somebody in the eye and said, ‘I have not received a penny from Milam,’ that it was the truth.”

The inspector general’s office said it presented its findings to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, which last year declined to prosecute.

Natalie Collins, spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada, said Tuesday that agency officials cannot confirm or deny whether someone is being investigated for possible prosecution.

In a phone interview Tuesday, Abbey said he was “shocked” to read the report, which he said was “terribly flawed,” “void of relevant facts” and “heavy on speculation and sensationalism.”

He said his consulting-firm partners landed the Milam contract while he led the BLM — before he returned to the firm — and that he “would not have shared in those proceeds.”

Abbey also said that he was investigated for more than three years, with investigators looking over his bank accounts, reviewing his personal and government email accounts, and interviewing numerous people, including him once.

And yet, he said, they found “absolutely no evidence or information” that could show he was involved in the decisions being made by BLM officials in Nevada in connection with the sale.

“I have no clue how any qualified investigator could reach this conclusion,” he said of the report.

The Henderson City Council in September 2011 approved an initial project agreement with Milam and voted to support the BLM land sale. According to Tuesday’s report, Abbey retired from the BLM on May 31, 2012, and the agency sold the land to Milam days later, on June 4, 2012, for $10.56 million.

Abbey rejoined his consulting firm in June 2012, the firm’s website says.

The inspector general’s report said Abbey’s “involvement in the land sale began early in the process,” as he “conversed or met with Ford on several occasions” before and during the initial sales efforts. According to the report:

• On March 4, 2011, Ford emailed Abbey, saying, “Glad we had time to catch up yesterday in Reno and happy we were able to visit candidly about issues of mutual interest (sic).”

• On March 22, 2011, Ford met with Abbey in Abbey’s BLM office in Washington.

• On March 23, 2011, Ford emailed Abbey at his Interior Department address, telling him to check his outside email account for a message.

• On June 23, 2011, Ford met with Abbey and “an official from a wildlife association” at Abbey’s BLM office in Washington. The report did not name the official or the association.

The BLM published a “notice of realty action” on April 4, 2012, to take public comments on its proposed sale to Milam’s Silver State Land LLC. Ford wrote “at least part” of the notice and “directly contacted” BLM employees “to guide and expedite (its) processing,” the report said.

Abbey also was involved, the report says. On March 7, 2012, an assistant to the BLM’s chief of staff emailed Abbey to tell him the notice had arrived for review. Abbey responded, “Thanks. This land sale is important in bringing jobs to an area of high unemployment. Sooner the better.”

About two weeks later, an attorney from the Interior Department’s legal division, the Office of the Solicitor, reviewed the notice and wrote that the land had “known mineral values.” Under U.S. law, she wrote, when the BLM is selling land, the agency has to determine a property either has no known mineral values or that preserving any existing mineral rights could, for instance, block a development project.

The notice did not address this, so she sent it to a supervisor, an acting branch chief.

On March 23, 2012, Abbey visited the supervisor and asked what was delaying the notice’s publication.

The supervisor later told investigators that it wasn’t unusual for Abbey to visit, “but he found it strange that Abbey came to his office to discuss” a notice of realty action, “as he had never before asked about one.”

On March 27, 2012, Abbey contacted a BLM division chief and asked that she check on the notice. The next day, the report said, Abbey kept trying to learn the notice’s status via email.

During his interview with investigators, Abbey “denied playing a part in the land sale, but when we showed him the series of emails he initiated” about the notice “and his subsequent visit to the branch chief, he said, ‘OK. It sort of reflected I had more interest in this than I thought, huh,’” the report said.

Abbey also said the notice “caught his attention because he did not want it to be ‘sitting in somebody’s in-basket,’” the report added.

Meanwhile, Ford, who spent 25 years with the BLM, had “an unusually high level of access to BLM personnel and processes before and during the Henderson land sale,” the inspector general’s office said,

A realty specialist with BLM’s Nevada state office who was involved in the sale process told investigators that “she gave precedence to Ford’s land applications when he did with business” with the BLM, and that “she had shared draft documents with him” in connection with the Milam sale.

Her actions “appeared to violate federal regulations that prohibit preferential treatment and the improper use of nonpublic information,” the report said.

In a statement provided by the BLM’s office in Reno, agency spokesman Jeff Krauss said the Interior Department takes the report’s findings “very seriously.”

The agency has reviewed the report and “taken the necessary administrative actions,” Krauss said without elaborating.

Read the rest of this story HERE.

Department of Interior’s “Where Are They Now?”

SOURCE:  PPJ Gazette

by Debbie Coffey

Copyright 2013/ All Rights Reserved.

________________________________________________________________

“But two of the highest-ranking officials who were subjects of the investigations will apparently escape penalty. Both retired during the investigation, rendering them safe from any administrative punishment, and the Justice Department has declined to prosecute them on the charges suggested by the inspector general.”  Their current locations and occupations cannot be verified at this time. ”

________________________________________________________________

Guess where some of the Department of Interior’s personnel are now (after running wild horses off their federally protected Herd Management Areas)?

Ken Salazar

Secretary of the Department of Interior, 2009 – February, 2013

In June, 2013, it was announced that Ken Salazar became a partner in the law firm WilmerHale in Denver.  WilmerHale represented BP after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico.  (This huge environmental disaster happened under Salazar’s watch as Secretary of the Interior.)  What’s really funny is a quote by Salazar in the Denver Post:

“I said in 2010 I will put my boot on the neck of BP,” Salazar said. “I will be completely segregated from revenues that come in from BP. I am not going to represent BP, and I’m not going to make any money from BP now or ever.”

When asked how much money he is being paid as partner, Salazar said, “It’s a very good package.

Wilmer Hale has also represented Monsanto.  

Ron Wenker

Director of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Nevada and was even the Director of the entire BLM for awhile!

WenkerRon Wenker was arrested in 2012 for sexually abusing a girl (a relative) from the time she was 8 years old until she was 13 years old, when he was finally caught by the girl’s brother.

So, the man who led the Nevada BLM and even led the ENTIRE BLM for a short while, was quoted on RGJ.com as making the following statements to detectives:

“Wenker said inappropriate touching escalated to oral sex. He said his behavior was “very dumb” and “illegal.”

“Ronald added that he has a deep emotional bond with (the relative) and that he thought she was enjoying the touching as much as he was,” detectives wrote of Wenker’s interview.

“…Ronald added that he isn’t a pedophile and that he had a deep, emotional attachment and love for his (relative) that evolved into a sexual relationship,” the detectives continued. “Ronald stated that he had been struggling with the urge to have sexual contact with (the relative) over the years, but he never sought any help or counseling with the issue. Ronald stated that he was telling himself ‘no more’ but he slipped …”

Think about it.  This was happening during the time Ron Wenker was at the pinnacle of major BLM decision making and this is an example of his reasoning, judgment, and (lack of) ethics.

In May, 2013, Wenker was sentenced to three life terms after pleading guilty to Sexual Assault and Lewdness with a Minor Under the Age of 14.  He will be eligible for parole in 30 years.

Bob Abbey

Director of the Bureau of Land Management

Bob Abbey retired in May, 2012 to rejoin his family full time in Mississippi, but in June, 2012 he rejoined his old business partners in what is now called Abbey, Stubbs & Ford Inc. in Henderson, Nevada.

Their clients include the Southern Nevada Water Authority (trying to pipeline all that water out of northeastern Nevada to Las Vegas), Coyote Springs Land Co. LLC, with business connections with Harvey Whittemore (one of Sen. Harry Reid’s closest friends), who controls Coyote Springs,  a proposed development about 50 miles north of Las Vegas (which  might benefit from the pipeline). 

Other clients include BrightSource Energy, a developer of large-scale solar thermal power plants (which has plans to build a 960MW solar thermal power plant within the Coyote Springs development), pharmaceutical companies and many more.

Gale A. Norton

Secretary of the Interior, 2001-2006

Gale Norton was closely linked to disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, and after leaving the Department of the Interior, she became General Counsel for Royal Dutch Shell (oil company). 

She is now President of Norton Regulatory Strategies (Denver, CO) a company that helps “CEOs and corporate boards understand risks and evaluate the strength of company plans for energy, mining, and other land-intensive investment projects” and “prepares persuasive materials to ensure agencies consider the effect of new regulations on your business.”

She is also a Senior Advisor at Clean Range Ventures (an energy technology venture capital firm) and an Advisory Board Member at Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute.

J. Steven Griles

former Deputy Secretary of the Department of Interior

According to ABC news, “J. Steven Griles, the former deputy secretary at the Interior Department, has been sentenced to 10 months in prison and must pay a $30,000 fine after pleading guilty to obstructing a congressional inquiry into disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff.  In pleading guilty, Griles admitted that he knowingly and willfully lied and concealed material information from senators and Senate investigators about the unique relationship that he had with Abramoff immediately prior to and during his tenure as DOI Deputy Secretary…”

Before Griles’ conviction, he left the White House to become a lobbyist for ConocoPhillips.  Steve Griles is now listed as a partner at Gresham Consulting Group (in North Carolina, but the company is also registered in Nevada).

Sue Ellen Wooldridge

Deputy Chief of Staff for Gale A. Norton, Secretary of the Interior

Norton’s Deputy Chief of Staff, Sue Ellen Wooldridge, purchased a $980,000 vacation home on Kiawah Island, South Carolina, together with two other individuals: Don R. Duncan, who was the vice president for federal and international affairs (and a lobbyist) for ConocoPhillips, and J. Steven Griles (above), her boyfriend at the time.

Nine months after buying the home with Duncan and Griles, and just before stepping down, Wooldridge approved consent decrees giving ConocoPhillips three more years to pay millions of dollars in fines for a Superfund toxic waste cleanup and install pollution controls (which are estimated to cost US$525 million) at nine of its refineries.

Wooldridge is currently listed as the manager of the Gresham Consulting Group (of which J. Steven Griles is a partner), a Business Entity filed in 2008 in Nevada.

Gregory W. Smith

was the former head of the Minerals Management Service’s Royalty-In-Kind (RIK) office in Denver, CO.  Smith and other workers at the Minerals Management Service RIK accepted lavish gifts, rigged contracts, had sex with and did illegal drugs with representatives of the oil companies.

Parts of the Department of Interior Inspector General’s report are X-Rated, so you’ll have to read the report if you want the sordid details.

The report contains many details, including “between April 2002 and June 2003, Geomatrix Consultants, Inc. (Geomatrix), an environmental and engineering consulting firm, paid Smith over $30,000 for his work in marketing Geomatrix to various oil and gas companies, most of whom, because of their business relationships with RIK, were considered prohibited sources.”

The New York Times stated this about Smith and his boss, Lucy Q. Denett: “But two of the highest-ranking officials who were subjects of the investigations will apparently escape penalty. Both retired during the investigation, rendering them safe from any administrative punishment, and the Justice Department has declined to prosecute them on the charges suggested by the inspector general.”

Their current locations and occupations cannot be verified at this time.

However, other Minerals Management Service employees were found guilty of felonies.

Not only is there a revolving door between the Department of the Interior and special interests, there is a pervasive attitude, from the leaders at the very top, down to the wranglers at wild horse holding facilities, that they are above the law and not accountable to the public.

SOURCES:

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-griles/52/764/476

http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/jan/27/lawsuit-alleges-harvey-whittemore-embezzled-compan/

http://www.coyotesprings.com/development.html

http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_23399512/colorados-ken-salazar-joins-top-law-firm-will

http://www.gmwatch.org/latest-listing/1-news-items/13216-new-threats-by-monsanto-against-organic-farmers

http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/BLM-Director-Bob-Abbey-to-Retire-After-34-Years-of-Public-Service.cfm

http://abbeystubbsfordllc.com/robert-bob-abbey.htm

http://ppjg.me/2010/08/02/senator-harry-reid-is-working-hard-%E2%80%93-but-for-whom/

http://www.poweronline.com/doc/BrightSource-Energy-And-Coyote-Springs-Land-0001

http://abbeystubbsfordllc.com/our-work.htm

http://blogs.rgj.com/crime/2012/08/09/man-claims-child-vic-enjoying-sex-abuse-as-much-as-him/

http://www.mynews4.com/news/local/story/Former-BLM-director-gets-3-life-sentences-for/YyUOtvC5yUSYivA3ZhXpbA.cspx?rss=3298

http://thinkprogress.org/report/interior-scandals-under-bush/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sue_Ellen_Wooldridge

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/gale-norton/15/787/682

http://nortonregs.com/about.html

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2007/06/former-interior/

http://rasei.colorado.edu/about-us/rasei-external-advisory-group

http://coloradoindependent.com/7739/report-culture-of-substance-abuse-and-promiscuity-at-denver-oil-and-gas-agency

http://groundreport.com/gregory-w-smith-cited-in-denver-government-drugs-sex-money-scandal/

http://s3.amazonaws.com/propublica/assets/docs/ir_gregory_smith_080807.pdf

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=allHYPERLINK “http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0″&HYPERLINK “http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0″_r=0

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/washingtonpostinvestigations/2008/10/third_oil_royalty_office_offic.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=allHYPERLINK “http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0″&HYPERLINK “http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/11/washington/11royalty.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0″_r=0

Head Fed of Wild Horse Harvesting Machine to Pull Plug

Unedited, less headlines, Press Release from the BLM

 Bob Abbey Leaves with BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program in Shambles

WASHINGTON, DCBureau of Land Management Director Robert Abbey announced today that he will retire from public service at the end of May to rejoin his family full-time in Mississippi. Appointed by President Obama in 2009, Director Abbey’s three-year tenure in leadership of the nation’s largest land management agency marks the culmination of a 34 year career of state and federal service.

“Bob has devoted his life and career to the service of his country and the stewardship of the resources with which we have been blessed,” Secretary Salazar said. “There has not been a time of more real or positive change at the Bureau of Land Management than under Bob’s leadership, from the renewable energy revolution he helped lead and the oil and gas reforms he implemented to the spectacular conservation lands he has helped protect for future generations. We are indebted to Bob for his visionary leadership, for his humility and kindness, and for the remarkable legacy he is passing along.”

“Serving as the BLM Director and having the opportunity to work with the most dedicated public servants in all of government has been the highlight of my career,” said BLM Director Bob Abbey. “It has been a privilege to work for President Obama and with Secretary Salazar and his team at the Department of the Interior on natural resource and energy issues of national importance. I will always be grateful to the Secretary for the opportunity he gave me and for his unwavering support. I am proud of what we have accomplished together and I leave knowing that our efforts to date will lead to even greater achievements in the months ahead.”

Since being confirmed by the U.S. Senate in August, 2009, Abbey oversaw the approval of 29 large-scale renewable energy projects on public lands, including 16 solar projects, 5 wind farms, and 8 geothermal plants. Prior to 2009, not a single solar project land had been approved for construction on public lands.

Abbey also implemented important reforms to BLM’s oil and gas leasing process to improve certainty, reduce conflict, and ensure that development is occurring in the right places and the right ways. At the same time, BLM has successfully helped expand domestic oil and gas production, including through the approval of major new projects like recently authorized Greater Natural Buttes project in Utah.

During his tenure, Abbey oversaw a significant expansion of the National Landscape Conservation System, led the agency toward more landscape-scale and partnership-driven planning, was a key leader in President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors Initiative, helped the agency incorporate climate change more fully into its planning, and developed a set of wilderness recommendations that are a blueprint for Congressional action.

Abbey, a native of Clarksdale, Miss., is a graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree. He and his wife Linda have been married for 35 years and have one daughter, Leigh. For a biography of Abbey, click here.

Following Director Abbey’s retirement on May 31, BLM Deputy Director Mike Pool will serve as Acting Director.

Contact: Adam Fetcher (DOI) 202-208-6416

BLM Seeks Bids for New Type of Contracts to Remove Protected Wild Horses for Replacement with Private Cattle on Pubic Lands

Public lands held by the National Forest Servi...

Public lands held by the National Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management in the Western US. Data from http://www.wildlandfire.com/docs/2007/western-states-data-public-land.htm. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Unedited Press release from the Bureau of Land Management,
Release Date: 03/28/12
Contact: Heather Emmons, 775-861-6594

BLM Seeks Bids for New Type of Contracts for Wild Horse and Burro Management

As part of its responsibility to manage and protect wild horses and burros, the Bureau of Land Management, in collaboration with the USDA Forest Service (FS), is soliciting bids for several contracts that will help manage wild horses and burros located across the western United States.  The contracts are for a new bait trapping method that is intended to relieve areas of excess wild horses and burros where helicopter drive trapping is not an effective method.  The bids are the first of their kind, in that they involve six zones across the West, with a potential for multiple contractors simultaneously bait trapping animals over an extended period of time.

Bait trapping is not a new method of gathering animals for the BLM; it has been implemented in areas where timeliness is not an issue, as bait trapping usually occurs over several weeks or months, and in locations where BLM personnel can easily monitor the progress from their duty locations.  Many times it occurs in areas where water is already scarce and the animals are lured by the water provided, or in areas where a helicopter cannot easily move the animals out of densely wooded areas.  Bait trapping involves capturing wild horses and burros by setting up panels and using food, water, salt or sexual attraction (a mare in heat) to lure animals into a trap.  Allowing contractors to execute the bait trapping over lengthy amounts of time in a variety of locations simultaneously, however, is a new strategy for the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program.

“The BLM is committed to continuously improving its management of wild horses and burros,” said BLM Wild Horse and Burro Division Chief Joan Guilfoyle.  “Deploying this new method of bait trapping enhances our ability to gather animals more effectively in certain areas of the West, while minimizing the impact to the animals.”

The concept of the contract is not to capture large numbers of wild horses and burros in a short period of time, but rather to capture smaller numbers over a long period of time.  A benefit is that it reduces the impact to the BLM’s holding facilities—instead of large horse gathers with hundreds or thousands of animals entering the facilities at one time, this type of management involves very small amounts of animals trickling into facilities over a longer period of time.  Each contract is from July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2013, with an option for four additional one-year periods.

The work consists of the capture, care and transportation of wild horses and /or burros from Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming.  It requires work to be accomplished in a safe and humane manner during all phases of the operation, including capture, handling and transport.  The contract is not set up for holding wild horses and burros for any length of time, but to have the wild horses and burros shipped to BLM facilities as soon as possible.  The contracts involve setting up a trap, capturing wild horses and burros and shipping them to the BLM preparation facilities.  The capture, care and handling must be completed by those who are knowledgeable and experienced about the behavior and trapping of equines.

The zones are determined by the location of FS territories, BLM herd management areas and proximity to BLM preparation facilities.  The goal is to employ contractors who live around the area where the wild horses and burros are located, so that they have short travel times from one trap area to another or to the BLM facility.  There can be more than one contract per zone and one contractor can bid on more than one zone.

The BLM’s bidding requirements are posted in solicitation L12PS00229, the details of which are available at http://www.fedconnect.net.  To obtain the solicitation: (1) click on “Search Public Opportunities”; (2) under Search Criteria, select “Reference Number”; (3) put in the solicitation number (L12PS00229); and (4) click “Search” and the solicitation information will appear.  The solicitation form describes what to submit and where to send it.  Applicants must be registered at http://www.ccr.gov to be considered for a contract award.

The BLM and FS manage wild horses and burros as part of their overall multiple-use missions.  Under the authority of the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, the BLM and FS manage and protect these living symbols of the Western spirit while ensuring that population levels are in balance with other public rangeland resources and uses.

To make sure that healthy herds thrive on healthy rangelands, the BLM must remove thousands of animals from the range each year to control the size of herds, which have virtually no predators and can double in population every four years.  The current free-roaming population of BLM-managed wild horses and burros is 38,500, which exceeds by nearly 12,000 the number determined by the BLM to be the appropriate management level.  Off the range, there are more than 47,000 wild horses and burros cared for in either short-term corrals or long-term pastures.   All these animals, whether on or off the range, are protected by the BLM under the 1971 law.

For a map of proposed bait-trap zones, visit http://on.doi.gov/GYyFqZ

BLM Allegedly Approves $300,000 for Wild Horse & Burro Projects

Bureau of Land Management logo

Bureau of Land Management logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Information supplied by BLM

Money to be Spent on Wild Horse & Burro Improvements Instead of Harassment?

(Unedited) ~As part of the Bureau of Land Management’s ongoing effort to engage volunteers in the stewardship of U.S. public lands, BLM Director Bob Abbey announced today that he has approved nearly $300,000 in the current fiscal year for 12 projects aimed at improving Western rangeland conditions where wild horses and burros roam. The on-the-ground work will also support the BLM’s forthcoming strategy to put its national Wild Horse and Burro Program on a sustainable path, as called for by the Government Accountability Office and members of Congress.

The “Director’s Challenge” initiative, announced by Abbey last October, seeks to offer citizen-based science opportunities to address land health issues within wild horse and burro Herd Management Areas (HMAs) across the West. The projects were reviewed by a team of BLM employees and Jim Stephenson, the Natural Resources Management representative on the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board. The approved projects include conducting inventories of water sources, monitoring riparian area conditions, removing invasive plant species, and protecting spring sources.

“I am delighted with the projects submitted by BLM field offices in response to this initiative,” Abbey said. “Citizens, organizations, agencies, and other stakeholders will now have new opportunities to take a hands-on role in the stewardship of America’s public lands.”

Abbey also commended the Bureau’s national volunteer program, which oversaw 114,027 hours of wild horse-related work by volunteers and organization-sponsored workers in Fiscal Year 2010. “Volunteers not only contribute their valuable time and labor, but also serve as the BLM’s best ambassadors in local communities across the West,” Abbey said.

The projects are:

· Stillwater Field Office, Carson City District, Nevada, Desatoya HMA: The objective of this project is to restore a large riparian complex that includes four spring sources, two wet meadows, and associated riparian areas. The project will use 50 volunteers and involve numerous partners, including the Nevada Department of Wildlife. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Surprise and Eagle Lake Field Offices, Northern California District, California, in those offices’ HMAs: This project will provide answers to basic questions regarding aquatic and riparian functions, conditions, and trends to support evaluation of land-management decisions, including range allotment strategies and wild horse and burro herd management plans. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Sierra Front Field Office, Carson City, Nevada, Pine Nut HMA, Dayton, Nevada: This project’s objective is to protect and promote the Pine Nut horses near the community and along well-established routes. The project will replace a temporary wire gate with a permanent metal gate and sign; an additional mile of fence will be replaced and repaired to keep horses off an airport runway. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $12,500

· Little Snake Field Office, North West District, Colorado, Sand Wash HMA: This project is aimed at developing a Friends of the Sand Wash Basin group that would work with the BLM to, among other things, clean up the HMA by removing large quantities of old woven wire and remnants of structures and corrals. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Grand Junction Field Office, Northwest District, Colorado, Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Range: This project’s objective is to build on the Friends of the Mustangs partnership by providing additional materials and training while applying fertility control to mares to ensure a viable horse population and healthy rangelands into the future. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Southern Nevada District Office, Nevada, Spring Mountains Complex (three HMAs and three territories): The objective of this project is to purchase and install six interpretive kiosks, 16 roadway signs, and 20 smaller “do not feed” information signs within the Spring Mountains Complex. Partners will include the Nevada Department of Transportation and Clark County. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Tres Rios Field Office, Southwest District, Colorado, Spring Creek Basin HMA: This project is aimed at expanding the ongoing successful partnership with the Disappointment Wild Bunch Partners to include such actions as herd monitoring, fence repairs, invasive weed inventory and treatments, illegal route closures, and travel management sign installation. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Ely District, Nevada, Silver King and Pancake HMAs: This project’s objective is to restore and develop spring sources within the Silver King and Pancake HMAs to reduce competition for water in the area. Partners will include the Nevada Department of Wildlife and Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $15,000

· White River Field Office, Northwest Colorado District, Colorado, Piceance-East Douglas HMA: This project seeks to develop an HMA volunteer partnership to help the BLM monitor HMA rangeland health, maintain and install range improvements, collect wild horse census information, and develop a motorized viewing tour of the HMA with appropriate signage and a brochure. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $20,200

· Ely District, Nevada, Triple B and Pancake HMAs: The objective of this project is to construct and install guzzlers (water tanks for wildlife) throughout the Triple B and Pancake HMAs where water sources are limited and being degraded by overuse. Volunteers helping the BLM will include wildlife organizations, wild horse advocates, and livestock grazing permittees. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Mount Lewis Field Office, Battle Mountain District, Nevada, New Pass/Ravenswood HMA: This project is aimed at collecting data to complete a rangeland health evaluation within the New Pass/Ravenswood HMA. The project will be coordinated with the Great Basin Institute, an interdisciplinary field studies organization that promotes environmental research, education, and conservation throughout the West. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

· Mount Lewis and Tonopah Field Offices, Battle Mountain District, Nevada: The objective of this project is to inventory and assess water sources within 28 priority HMAs administered by the Battle Mountain District. This project will be coordinated with the Great Basin Institute. Funding amount from the Director’s Challenge: $25,000

 

Salazar, Obama’s BLM Stick It to the Wild Horses, Burros and the American Public

OpEd by R.T. Fitch ~ President of the Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Infamous Horse Slaughter Advocate Appointed to BLM Advisory Board

"Our friend Callie says da horses gotta GO...eat more Horse!"

While trusting Americans calmly slept all snug in their beds dreaming of freedom, blue skies, green grass and the thundering of distance hooves the grotesquely distorted and immoral monster, known as the Department of the Interior (DoI), was plotting on collusive and divisive ways to kill off the national icon of American freedom and independence; the wild horses and burros of the western United States.

The plotting, scheming, lobbying, exchanging of favors and money under the table is nothing new for the DoI and its bastard offspring, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  They have been stripping, maiming, harming, warehousing, killing, selling and hiding tens of thousands of public wild horses for decades and as of late it was actually exposed, in a FOIA back in 2008, that they were going to slaughter the tens of thousands that are in their equine concentration camps, only to do an about face and lie to the public and say that was just a hypothetical study and they never intended to actually pull the trigger, right.

But would you like some rock solid evidence, today, without any shadow of a doubt that the bought and paid for grazing company, BLM, is stacking the deck to ensure that our national heritage is cruelly slaughtered and sold to foreign countries for a filly burger versus applying sound science to range management?  I will give you all that without even any comment; just letting the facts speak for themselves.

Several weeks ago the Secretary of the DoI, Colorado cattle baron and long time horse-hater Ken Salazar appointed one of his home state buddies to the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board.  This sham of a board is supposed to advise the BLM on a way forward in protecting and managing the national treasure of wild horses and burros on their federally designated public lands.  But instead, this board is stacked with ONLY cattle, hunting and grazing interests.  To date, there is not one single horse/burro advocate sitting on this public board and good ole boy Salazar appointed an infamous and outspoken horse slaughter advocate and welfare ranching promoter into the “Public Advocate” slot.  You say, “What gives?”…it’s called collusion, money, greed and corruption ladies and gentlemen and what stings the most is that the feds that suckle on the teats of the federal sow don’t think that we are smart enough to figure out what is REALLY going on; that’s what curdles my milk.

Let’s take a second and listen to the words of wisdom that Salazar’s new appointee, Callie Hendrickson, has to say about wild horses/burros and banned, predatory horse slaughter.  Former Public Advocate Janet Jankura wanted to stay but Salazar wasn’t having any of that because some of the wild horse advocates actually got along well with Janet, damn her soul.

First stop will be her website, the Wild Horse Range Coalition which is pretty much a failed attempt to pull together welfare ranchers, who pay only $1.35 a month to tear up and destroy YOUR public lands, so that they can all collectively blame the naturally occurring wild horses for range degradation where the horses are usually outnumbered by private cattle, on public land, between 100-400 to “1”.  We shall take a cue from Callie and utilize the format that she uses on her site/blog with the headers “Callie Says:” (now keep in mind that this individual was picked to be YOUR voice to the BLM in helping to preserve and protect OUR wild horses and burros)

Callie Says:

Posted October 11th, 2011 – Wild Horses and Burros Meeting

“Based on what we hear about the people in the East wanting to be sure the horses remain free or that they won’t stand for the horses to be sold, I was surprised that the only activist in attendance were the small handful that have been making a living off of convincing people that the BLM is managing the horses to extinction.  There were a total of 10 – 12 people who made comments.  There were no tears shed by the horse activists this time so to wasn’t quite as entertaining as the two previous meetings.”  (Little note here, Callie honey, idiots like you are costing me my retirement.  Make money?  We spend money;  personal money and trying to save the West Douglas herd from your gnashing teeth and clanking knife and fork is postponing my retirement you self-righteous twit…oh, sorry, I forgot, I wasn’t going to say anything but I just don’t do “stupid” very well.)

…” I was very frustrated when a new Board Member noted the Board needed to consider the elephant in the room and discuss lethal control of the horses.  Immediately he was shut down by the Chair of the Board, Robin Lohnes, and BLM Assistant Director, Ed Roberson.  Last I knew anything about parliamentary procedure, the Chair’s role is to conduct the meeting rather than control the conversation to the point only her point of view is discussed.  And since this is an “Advisory” Board to the BLM, it is frustrating that a BLM employee would shut down any discussion brought up by a Board Member.  In my opinion, that was totally inappropriate.”  (Wow, what a team player…stupid enough to publicly trounce on the Chair and STILL get appointed.  You must have something pretty big on ole Kenny, huh?  And we feel sorry for you, they didn’t get a chance to talk about your favorite subject, slaughtering and eating wild horses…bet that made you all hot for a “Filly Fillet”, didn’t it.  Drat, there I go again, sorry.)

Oh, Callie talks to herself, too.  Here site/blog is such a total failure that she is the only one who responds to her page on current issues and she only had two responses to all of the issues with the most interesting being:

Callie Says:

“Check out the GAO report that tells us what we already knew. Closing horse slaughter plants has caused more horses to suffer. Surprise, surprise!”  (Don’t you just want to give her a great big hug?)

Under another header;

Callie Says:

“These new bills on the Government Litigation Savings Act are making wild horse groups nervous. These bills will stop their “cash cow” because they will no longer be able to sue the government to make money. I encourage you to see the “take action” page and learn about what these bills will do for you as a tax payer.”  (I think we talked about this before, dumbass…eeks, sorry burros…there is NO money in suing the BLM to stop abusing the horses and burros, it is a bottomless pit but it is all done so that WE can sleep at night knowing that we have done the right thing while the likes of you toss and turn with the haunting nightmares of destroying all that is natural, pure and right with our wilderness.  I wouldn’t trade places for a second.)

Callie is also a self-proclaimed scientist and mathematician, a trait she shares with her friend, “Slaughterhouse” Sue Wallis:

Callie Says:

“While there are an estimated 38,500 horses and burros (12,000 more than the range can support), it has been proven time and time again that BLM’s count is anywhere from 15% to 50% undercounted. This is understandable because it is impossible to count all the animals from the air when they are in rough terrain (canyons and mesas) under pinion and juniper trees. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to count horses, deer, elk, cattle, etc. If we give them the benefit of the doubt and estimate an undercount of 35%, there are likely 51,975 horses on the range.”

Callie went to Washington in May of 2011 to share her genius and compassionate heart with legislators on Capitol Hill, to read her comments just warms your soul as she is the one who will be advising the BLM on how to care for and protect your wild horses, I just can’t wait.

Callie Says:

“Our message was, BLM has the law to follow and they need to stand up in court and defend their decisions to remove the horses from the range.  They have the authority to sell the excess horses and they need to do so.  That is the only answer to keeping a healthy range and to not be spending $40 million a year feeding horses that have no use.”  (Gosh, I have a really neat and simple plan for all those useless horses, darling…leave them on the range were they don’t cost a friggen nickel just as the US Congress voted UNANIMOUSLY to do back in 1971.  Am I missing something here?)

Callie goes on to talk about the suit to stop the Triple B roundup, last year, which was filed with Laura Leigh as plaintiff and Wild Horse Freedom Federation as the supporting organization.  Initially the judge allowed the round up to proceed but with video supplied by the plaintiff showing the pursing helicopter coming into contact with the horse the Judge issued a Temporary Restraining Order to stop the roundup.  Now Callie does not mention the TRO, only the initial denial on July 15th and she is so very disengaged from the facts of what is going on as she blames and bashes the Cloud Foundation instead of the true funding group, WHFF.

Callie Says:

“This is great news that the Court recognizes the law and the need to move forward with these gathers! However, I bet we never see any information about what the Cloud Foundation has cost the taxpayer in delaying the gather after all of BLM’s and the gathering contractor’s efforts and expenses of setting up for the gather, being delayed, being given the go-ahead, then being delayed again, then being given the go-ahead again!”  (Awww, poor misguided thing, I would so very much have liked you to bash myself or our WHFF versus the good folks at TCF.  I love a good thrashing from a lame blogger now and then..’stop it I love it’…’it hurts so good’…but no, you missed the entire point and went down a road that only shows your lack of understanding and total disengagement from the facts, sigh…I hope that your condition improves.)

So folks if you have some time to waste and feel like seeing what it is like to live in a very dark and lonely habitat simply swing on over to www.wildhorserange.org where you can witness the melt down of a celebrity wanna-be post disjointed articles with the only comments made being from herself, one guy did comment on the entire site and she was so enthralled that she asked him to forward her article to the BLM so that they could see how cool she was.  To date, she has had only 9,000 hapless victims hit on her site, we do that in a day at SFTHH, but then again, we are about doing what is right instead of delving into the darkness of murder and slaughter…and now she represents YOU, the American public, ain’t it sweet?

Oh, don’t forget to swing by and listen to Callie talk up her ideas on the internet radio:

(The BARN – Briggsdale, CO) Joining the BARN by telephone is newly appointed BLM National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board Member Callie Hendrickson discussing several issues related to the management of Wild Horses & Burros in the United States & right here in Colorado. In particular is the focus on the Act that guides the program, and that gives BLM the authority to make decisions regarding the National Wild Horse & Burro Program…022112_WildHorseBurroProgram_CallieHendrickson_21m

But before we close, let’s bop on over to Facebook where good ole Callie publicly fawns up next to our favorite Head Horse-Eater, Dave Duquette, president of the ever shape shifting organization presently going under the name of United Horsemen, a front for the slaughter, meat and packing industry with ties to the current Canadian Horse Slaughter community.  (She is now a proud member and will be speaking at their Slaughterfest in May, again as your PUBLIC ADVOCATE to the BLM for YOUR wild horses and burros, ain’t it great?

Dave Duquette “Welcome aboard folks, Callie it’s great to see you here.”

Callie Hendrickson “Thanks Dave Duquette. I’m working on learning this FB thing. Working to help people understand the problems the wild/feral horse overpopulation issues cause on the range. Have you visited the www.wildhorserange.org page? You seem to have a great handle on this stuff and I certainly welcome your feedback on it.”

Callie Hendrickson “BTW Dave, great job on all the work you are doing to get the Approps bill passed without the rider! Keep up the good work and be sure to let us know what we can do to help.”

On her own pro-cow anti-horse Facebook page she talks to herself a lot, too:

Callie Says:

“As a taxpayer, I agree 100% with Ole Olson! Sell them and let the highest bidder buy the horses. If it is a horse lover, great! If it is a killer buyer, great! At one time I thought the government had an obligation to manage the taxpayers’ money wisely. That has gone out the window today. Has anyone burst Ms. Pickens bubble by letting her know the horses she saw in the movies were domestic horses? Or is that like her not knowing that horses are used for meat? If you marry the kind of money that she has, I guess you can afford to live in a fantasy world. But in the real world, life is life and it ends in death one way or another.”

Enough said?

Now it’s time to hear from someone else, someone who may be opinionated but the opinions fall into the favor of preserving the lives of our national icons and to stop the destruction of our public lands for personal gain.  That someone would be ME!

R.T. Says:

“It’s time to CULL CALLIE, to stand up and fight this outrageous appointment; a slap in the face to the good citizens of this fair land, this horse-hater needs to go and go now.”

Click (HERE) for more Info

Come join us in our National Call in and Fax day on March 1st where we intend to occupy both the phone lines AND the fax lines to Callie’s good buddy and friend, Ken Salazar.  Let Kenny know that you are outraged, pissed off, disappointed and insistent that Cruel Callie be removed from consideration for the BLM Advisory board, IMMEDIATELY.  This is unconscionable and yet another stain on the Administration that had promised not only change, but to be animal friendly.  We have NOT seen anything like that, yet.

On March 1st tell Salazar that you want action and you want action NOW, enough is enough:

Number to Call: (202) 208-3100

Number to Fax: (202) 208-6956

Address to Email: feedback@ios.doi.gov

Cull Cruel Callie is the Cry of the day and as a team, we can make it happen.  Tell your family, your friends, your business associates and go visit her site and pull down the evil talk.  This woman does not represent mainstream America and it is obvious that she does a poor job of representing the horse-eating few.  She has to go.

Make the calls, send the faxes and insist Cruel Callie is Culled on March 1st.  We have the power, we have the know-how and we surely have the right cause on our side.

CULL CRUEL CALLIE

Sources:

http://www.wildhorserange.org/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wild-Horse-Range/154140607989970

https://www.facebook.com/groups/unitedhorsemen/permalink/181547408596460/

http://brianallmerradionetwork.wordpress.com/2012/02/22/02-21-12-blm-announces-three-selections-for-national-wild-horse-and-burro-advisory-board/

Equine Welfare Organizations Join Forces to Demand Ouster of BLM Board Horse Slaughter Promoting Appointee

Unified Call to Action from: Animal Law Coalition, ASPCA, Cloud Foundation, Equine Welfare Alliance, Front Range Equine Rescue, Horse Fund and Wild Horse Freedom Federation

National Wild Horse and Burro Protest Day – March 1, 2012

"Callie Hendrickson does NOT represent US or the HORSES!"

Join thousands of concerned and caring Americans around the country.

Protest Interior Secretary Ken Salazar’s appointment of Callie Hendrickson to the BLM National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board[1] as the General Public Representative.

Background: Callie Hendrickson is the Executive Director of the White River and Douglas Creek Conservation Districts representing ranching interests, many of whom have permits to run livestock on public lands in Northwestern Colorado. The organization successfully petitioned to become an intervenor on the side of BLM to completely remove the West Douglas Wild Horse Herd on the Western Slope of Colorado.

 

  • Ms. Hendrickson supports the sale without limitation of all unadopted wild horses to the highest bidder (including slaughter buyers).

 

  • Ms. Hendrickson will speak at the second pro-slaughter conference (Summit of the Horse) in Oklahoma City this spring.

 

Does Callie Hendrickson represent you? If your answer is NO, then please call, fax, and email Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and politely, but firmly ask that Callie Hendrickson’s appointment to the Advisory Board[1] be rescinded immediately.

Tell the Secretary that she does not represent you or the 80% of the General Public opposed to horse slaughter[2].

Number to Call: (202) 208-3100
Number to Fax: (202) 208-6956
Address to Email: feedback@ios.doi.gov


[1] The BLM Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board recommends management strategies to the BLM. Hendrickson would join Jim Stephenson (appointed June 2011) on the Board. Stephenson openly advocates for horse slaughter. BLM has discussed killing wild horses in holding since at least 2008. With Hendrickson, they may have just the Board they want —a Board that could recommend to BLM that they dispose of the wild horses in holding.

 

[2] A recent nationwide poll reveals that 80% of Americans oppose the slaughter of U.S. horses for  human consumption regardless of their gender, political affiliation, whether they live in an urban or rural area, or their geographic location. Further, it confirms that a vast majority of horse owners are also against the slaughtering of our nation’s equines. The survey was sponsored by the ASPCA and conducted by Lake Research Partners.

 

BLM Boss Bob Abbey Plays Congress

Guest OpEd by Bonnie Kohleriter

The Head Wild Horse Harasser Speaks with Forked Tongue

Bob Abbey, the Director of the BLM, claims his primary job is promoting the wild horse and burro program and securing funds for the program.  But do his omissions and deceptions of the program deserve the Americans’ tax dollars?  The wild horse and burro program was to protect our wild horses and burros on the range as our symbols of freedom.  It was not to tear them away from their lands, families, bands and to commit them as prisoners to flat, barren corrals.

Bob Abbey plays Congress in 2011 to get his funds for next year

Head Wild Horse Molester

Bob Abbey uses the OIG and its report.  He states the OIG says 38,365 horses are on the range with a 20% yearly foal rate giving you 238,000 horses by 2020.  The OIG concludes, with this information, gathers are necessary.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the OIG lifted the number 38,365 from  national statistics which the local Wild Horse and Burro Specialists will tell you are inflated.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the OIG’s own numbers used shows  a 12% foal rate per year, not the 20%.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the OIG  did not address fertility control treatment done correctly versus gathering as an alternative to gathering.

 Bob Abbey plays Congress to get his funds for next year

Bob Abbey uses four independent observers “Equine Specialists” and their report.

He states the independent observers say gathers are humane.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the observers did not speak to the  untold damage done to the horses left on the range as a result of the gathers.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the observers had 18 recommendations to improve the gathers.

What Bob Abbey does not tell the Congress is the independent observers saw only 2 and a part of a gather out of 50 + gathers.

 Bob Abbey plays Congress in 2011 to get his funds for next year

Bob Abbey promotes fertility control treatment as the reason to gather and/or as the way to reduce gathers.  He calls it his “catch, treat, and release” program.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the fertility control treatment program is a ruse to continue gathers and removals.

This is but one example of many the same: Augusta, January 31,2011, horses gathered for the primary purpose of “catch, treat, and release.”…275 to be gathered…all to be returned…118 to be vaccinated with PZP 22.  REALITY! 244 gathered, 103 removed or 42%, 58 given PZP …Removal or fertility control treatment and released? I ask you.

Another example: Antelope, February, 2011, horses gathered not for the primary purpose of catch, treat, and release, but are to be treated and released to slow population growth…Fly-over count states 2705 are on the range.  A summary based on 2009 National Statistics and the 2010 foal-death rate number states 1379.  2705 versus 1379.  Prepared environmental assessment (EA) that says wants to gather2299, remove 2278, and PZP 214.  REALITY! 1399 are gathered, 1379 removed, and 21 of 31 are given PZP and released to the range. Were 2705 ever on the range or were closer to 1379 on the range.  Remember 1399 were gathered.  Fertility control treatment …21?  I ask you.

Over and over the pattern is the same, exaggerated numbers from fly-overs, compared to previous statistics, far less than expected gathered and removed,  token PZP given to horses, not the 60% of the herd’s mares suggested by Dr. Kirkpatrick and the HSUS to retain the horses on the range.  Look ahead to the upcoming gathers with the same continued pattern in Little Colorado, White Mountain, Triple B, Maverick-Medicine.

Bob Abbey plays Congress to get his funds for next year

Bob Abbey tells Congress he plans to reduce the annual number of wild horses  removed from the range for the next two years from 10,000 to 7,600 giving them the idea more horses will be left on range.

Bob Abbey tells Congress he plans to increase the number of mares treated with fertility control from 500 to 2000.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is his numbers to gather are dwindling drastically so that he is even illegally gathering below the lower AMLs  or appropriate management levels.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is he is planning to spay mares and geld stallions and to return them to the range as non-reproducing herds resulting in the extinction of the wild horse on the range.

Bob Abbey plays Congress to get his funds for next year

Bob Abbey tells Congress “It is important to reaffirm throughout the agency  the BLM’s fundamental commitment to transparency in all facets of the wild horse and burro program.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is the largest holding corral allows visitors only once a year even though it is by contract to open up weekly.

What Bob Abbey does not tell Congress is he doesn’t open most long-term pastures for horses for viewing even to a select group of people such as personnel from the OIG.

Bob Abbey claims his primary job is promoting the wild horse and burro program and securing funds for the program.  But do his omissions and deceptive presentations and the in fact, activities of the program deserve the American’s tax dollars.  The wild horse and burro program was to manage and protect our wild horses and burros on the range as a component of our national heritage,and as a symbol of our freedom. It was not to tear them away from their lands, their families, and their bands and to commit them to a life as prisoners in barren, unsheltered corrals.

 WHEN WILL BOB ABBEY AND HIS MANAGERS DO THE RIGHT THING TO KEEP OUR WILD HORSES AND BURROS ON THE RANGE

Federal Judge to Rule on BLM Nevada Wild Horse Stampede

story by By SCOTT SONNER , from multiple sources

Judge: “I am very concerned about the wild horses!”

A federal judge has said he intends to decide Friday whether to grant an emergency injunction blocking a government roundup of 1,700 wild horses in eastern Nevada, a move that also could affect other roundups on public rangeland across the West.

“I’m very concerned about the wild horses,” U.S. District Judge Howard McKibben said Thursday as he questioned lawyers for both sides about their interpretations of the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.

Opponents of the roundup say it violates the act because the Bureau of Land Management has failed to prove the herds are over populated and causing ecological harm to public rangeland.

Such a finding is necessary before any of the horses can be removed from federally designated “horse management areas,” they say.

“This statute was put in place for a reason — to protect these horses from man, and that includes BLM,” said Rachel Fazio, a lawyer for the Colorado-based Cloud Foundation suing to block the roundup BLM intends to start Saturday.

“These horses are to be left alone and not interfered with unless there is a threat to the thriving, natural, ecological balance and that does not exist,” she said.

“There may be some water issues in some isolated areas, but these horses are in great condition. There is tons of forage out there. There is no urgency right now to remove these horses from the range.”

The 1,700 horses targeted for roundup are among about 2,200 that roam a series of horse management areas covering a total of 1.7 million acres southeast of Elko and northwest of Ely in northeast Nevada.

BLM maintains that area can support only between 500 and 900 horses. Agency officials say they already are trucking in water due to typical water shortages in some areas and that while forage may be adequate now, there will be less come winter.

“The plaintiff suggests we wait until the entire 1.7 million acres is severely damaged before we can act,” said Erik Petersen, a Justice Department lawyer representing the BLM during Thursday’s one-hour hearing.

Petersen said it is important for the agency to stick to its schedule of roundups because there are a limited number of contractors who can provide the helicopters needed for the largest gathers.

Postponing the Nevada roundup “could delay other gathers throughout the western United States,” he said, adding that the next big roundup is planned in Wyoming in September.

Obama’s Wild Horse and Burro Gangsta Dance

by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/President of the Wild Horse Freedom Federation

The Deadly Trio Dance upon the Bodies of our Fallen Icons

Pull up a bucket, light a smoke and groove with the dancen stylings of da Prez, his right hand man DoI Secretary Kenny Salazar and big, bad Bobby A, Director of the cattle rustlen, oil guzzling, wild horse wranglen BLM.  Light your doobies and take a long drag as these three dance, shuck and jive with elation over pulling the wool over the public’s eyes and steal 10s of millions of dollars to kill, capture and hold as prisoners 10s of thousands of native wild horses, illegally, while the music plays and the world looks the other way.

Feel the beat, enjoy the tunes as the drone of helicopter blades will be playing tomorrow and dozens of more wild horses and burros will lose their rightful homes and lives while these elected jackasses, sorry burros, smile at the cameras and stick it to you from behind.  Makes ya proud, don’t it?

Call you Representatives and Congressmen and tell them that you have had ENOUGH!