Keeping federal grazing lands open
February 18, 2013
By U.S. Congressman Raul Labrador
Over the last several years, the Obama
administration spent nearly $1 trillion of
taxpayer money on an economic stimulus package
and stifled small businesses with regulations.
The result is an America where too many new
graduates are still out of work, too many
families struggle to provide for their families
and the unemployment rate is virtually unchanged
from when the president was first sworn into
It's now absolutely clear trying things the
president's way of more government involvement
in the free market does not work.
That is why I continue to fight for reducing
government involvement in the free market as a
way to encourage economic growth in Idaho.
To further this goal, I have reintroduced the
Grazing Improvement Act this week.
This legislation would provide several important
tools for easing access to public lands for
Idaho ranchers. It streamlines the permitting
process for ranchers to access public lands. It
also gives production security to ranchers
because it extends grazing permits from 10 to 20
years. And expired permits would be extended
under the existing terms and conditions until
the renewal process is complete.
Ranchers are a staple of our state's economy.
If they were to lose their grazing permits, they
would have to subdivide their land. I cannot
allow ranchers here to lose access to lands
where their families have grazed livestock for
generations. This would have a negative impact
in many of our towns.
The Grazing Improvement Act will help to ensure
the continued success of many families in Idaho.
This is the kind of sensible reform we need for
our ranchers to stay in business and grow our
economy more quickly.
During the 112th Congress, in June 2012, this
bill passed the U.S. House of Representatives on
a bipartisan vote of 232-188.
I look forward to working with the Senate to
pass this important piece of legislation.
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