Nevada Tri-RAC, fast notes

BLM slideshow. Did you all know that "AML" is not many more than Congress declared "fast disappearing?" It is one of those questions BLM really can't answer "why?"

BLM slideshow. Did you all know that “AML” is not many more than Congress declared “fast disappearing?” It is one of those questions BLM really can’t answer “why?”

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) held a meeting of the Resource Advisory Council (RAC). The meeting is referenced as a “Tri-RAC” as it incorporates all of the RAC’s in the state. Very few advocates were in attendance even though Nevada manages more wild horses in some single districts than many western states. Wild horses were an agenda item with a public comment period immediately afterwards. Announcement and agenda can be viewed here:

Notes (Leigh): Many subjects were discussed at the RAC. The primary focus being “long term” holding. This is the first meeting I have attended where “slaughter” was not suggested as an option by a member of the RAC, or anyone else (makes you wonder how high the heat got after the Tom Davis/Salazar debacle was exposed). 

There was considerable misinformation given to the RAC and WHE will create an outline to provide appropriate figures as RAC’s are creating suggestions to various BLM districts on new land use plans. Land use plans (RMP’s) will create the framework for all environmental assessments for the next decade (think roundups) and this is no time to create an opportunity for more faulty management to occur.

One of the most interesting pieces of misinformation came from Joan Guilfoyle, BLM cheif of the wild horse and burro program.When asked about the cost of holding the 50,000 animals that the agency has taken off the range (about 44 million dollars) Guilfoyle did not know the answer and had to email someone not present. With all of the interest focused on holding you would think that would be a figure she could pull out of the air. Anyway she quoted the figure to disbelief from the RAC and then stated that included the cost of removals. It doesn’t. The actual “cost” of feeding or caring for the animals is not broken down in an easy to locate format. However it does not take 44 million to feed horses BLM claims are in “lush pastures.” The costs do include INITIAL feezemarking, vaccines and wormers and transportation. It also includes the fees to “administer” the holding program (I think the colloquial term is “fat”). Removals, or roundups, have their own “piece of the pie.”

I was not planning to speak, just document, but the conversation got so far away from the actual core of the program that I had to talk. Will file a full report soon.

Budget for 2013 BLM WH&B program

Budget for 2013 BLM WH&B program


WHE will prepare a document to send on to the individual RAC’s and we will share it here. Right now we have another answer due in the Owyhee case, more prep on the hearing on Feb 19th in the press freedoms case and prep work on the Triple B (Jackson Mountain) case as well as other investigations and documentation to attend to first.

Below is a video posted by WHE to youtube of Leigh’s fast comment to the RAC.

Help keep us in the field and the courtroom!

Help keep us in the field and the courtroom!


8 thoughts on “Nevada Tri-RAC, fast notes

  1. So areas critical for on-the-range management – Herd Management Plans, Monitoring HMAs, Conducting Population Surveys – all three are allocated approximately 2.8% of this monstrous budget, and all three COMBINED ($2,151,515) are 1/3 LESS than the amount earmarked for roundups.

    Am I missing something here.

      • You’ll notice my last sentence above has no question mark…

        I’ve been keeping a ‘ledger’ of holding facilities that covers reports I’ve been able to find over the past 3-4 years (because they’re not archived, and if they are, it isn’t for very long). Short Term has me shakin’ my head as to why it costs so damn much, given the enormous exodus of animals from report to report: Fewer animals, less feed and upkeep (while I have serious doubts as to the quality and consistency of ‘upkeep’ AND the numbers in Short Term.) However – while Long Term’s numbers keep creepin’ up, aren’t LTPs ‘contracted’ for a set price for a set amount of horses? I understand landowners are paid a per animal, per day fee, and are expected to supplement feed from that fee.

        And just cuz I like a well-informed, well-stirred pot, someone recently posted NOAA’s ‘Drought Index’ for January 30, 2013. Of all the areas predicted to continue suffering from the worsening drought, the Midwest currently ranks ABOVE the Northwestern States – Nevada, California, Idaho, Utah – for severity.

        This budget seriously lacks any predication on the areas of actual need. Range study and monitoring of HMAs needs to be funded at least equal to what’s allocated for removals if management of wild equines is to be taken seriously. Otherwise, this Program looks like it’s primary purpose is to benefit holding facilities and pastures – and little else.

      • Lisa you need to contact OIG direct. Tell them about the Ledger…. I was not responding as if you asked a question but in affirmation. The comments made on this blog do not reflect the number of readers. We have an awful lot of people watching what is said here. 🙂

  2. Your ability to speak so knowledgeably and calmly on the spur of the moment is very impressive. I certainly understand the point that you were making, and hope that the people in that room did also. It seems that a change in attitude based on fact and research is sorely needed. And disappointing to hear that the people who are most closely responsible for the WH&B don’t even seem to know the facts that are pertinent to any decision. Did they read any of the letters that we sent? I’m certain—not. thanks again for all you do..

    • The frustration is that humans seem to need to create drama to feel important. The issues in the WH&B program are as simple as saying “we made some mistakes, now we know better, and using common sense to solve. BUT if you look at both sides of this fence those involved sound like broken records that in truth do nothing toward anything “common sense” based. I do get frustrated… but I have learned that if I play really loud music it helps.
      Also if you notice those sitting at the table did applaud…. they are RAC members and I am just beginning to actually hear some common ground in those rooms.

  3. lawmakers believe that the federal land in Utah is as much their land as it is Utah’s. “It’s federal land, and if Utah can find it unconstitutional for the feds to own the land, then we can find it unconstitutional for all that land be turned over to Utah”. The federal government owns close to 23 million acres in Utah. We looking to make trillions in natural resource revenues.

    RI legislature sees no problem that part of their state would be in the West. They would simply use all the revenue they are sure to make selling natural resources. There are a lot of western states that don’t own there mineral rights. Utah is heading up this fight.?? Bill The EWG Knows
    Who’s Asking ‘Who Owns The West?’ By John Yewell, 4-13-05 UTAH biil for education and lands mineral rights Legislative bills tell federal government to give up public land in Utah

    By Amy Joi O’Donoghue, Deseret News

    Published: Tuesday, Feb. 21 2012 3:03 p.m. MST

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