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Senate votes to stop BLM’s Planning 2.0 rule
March 8, 2017

Another Obama-era rule was struck down by the U.S. Senate. This time it was the land management rule that was put in place in the final days of the Obama administration.

The U.S. Senate voted 51-48 to scuttle the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) “Planning 2.0” rule, a measure to modernize federal land management strategies.

The Hill reported that the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution against the rule is the latest measure pushed by Republicans taking aim at Obama-era rules. With President Trump’s signature the resolution will be the third successful CRA challenge to an environmental measure so far this year.

Conservatives have opposed the BLM’s regulation, which they say gives the federal government too much influence over public land decisions and marginalizes state and local input.

“Instead of greater transparency, BLM delivered a new process that ensures less transparency,” said Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R, AK). “Instead of expanding public participation, Western states are looking at fewer and weaker opportunities to influence the management of local lands. Planning 2.0 also turns the relationship between the federal, the state and the local governments on its head.”

Supporters of the rule, though, said it was designed to overhaul the communication process between federal and state officials, something that hasn’t been updated since the early 1980s.

“I guarantee you in those 30 years we can come up with a better process for input from our constituents on important land use issues,” Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) said.

She called the rule “a very important project that has guaranteed public access, transparency and sunshine in planning our public lands.”

Trump has so far signed two resolutions undoing Obama-era environmental issues, including a coal-mining rule and a financial disclosure requirement for drilling and mining firms.
 

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