Press Releases

Press releases are archived according to their release date. For press releases by topic, please see the Issue Positions page.

May 12 2011

Hatch Strongly Denounces Red Rock Wilderness Bill

Calls it a Gross Intrusion on the Land Rights of Utahns

Washington, D. C. – Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) denounced “America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act” introduced in Congress today by Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY).   The bill ties up 9.1 million acres of public land in Utah as wilderness.

“I always find it highly ironic that two Members of Congress from the East coast get such great pleasure in telling us in Utah how we should manage our lands, and what should be considered wilderness,” stated Hatch.  “This bill creates millions of acres of restrictive wilderness designation in Utah that would obstruct energy development and future energy transmission, as well as recreational access to a large portion of our state  –  without any regard to the work of the local officials who are concerned with preserving true, pristine wilderness balanced with the need for economic development and financial stability.”

“This is an extremist environmentalist bill by few who represent states or districts west of the Mississippi.  In addition, no members of the Utah delegation are on this bill.

“I am working with local officials to draft a series of county-based land-use bills that are a responsible approach to public land management that relies on the input of county commissioners and other local stake holders. 

“The bill introduced today is a gross intrusion on the land rights of Utahns, done by people from the east coast who have no idea what it takes to balance the need to preserve truly pristine, beautiful wild areas, with the need for economic stability for local, rural communities. 

“In fact, it is interesting to note that this legislation does not include areas of Washington County because of the successful land-use bill that was passed a few years ago.    This is the correct approach to land management and bad bills like the Redrock Wilderness bill only make it harder for us to do it the right way.”

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