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Committee to look at uses for Nevada wilderness areas

12/1/2003 10:13 pm

A legislative study committee will meet Dec. 18 in Winnemucca to begin developing recommendations on what Congress should do with Nevada’s 20-year-old Wilderness Study Areas.

More than 20 years ago, Congress set aside more than 5 million acres of Nevada for study as potential wilderness.

Sen. Dean Rhoads, R-Tuscarora, said that while 2 million acres have been set aside as wilderness, the various groups interested in the land have been unable to reach consensus on what to do with the remaining 3.8 million acres.

Rhoads, who will chair the panel, said those areas remain in limbo, administered by the Bureau of Land Management as though they are wilderness.

He said his Public Lands Subcommittee was established to review the status of the remaining areas and draft recommendations, which will be forwarded to Nevada’s congressional delegation. He said input is critical from the counties that include the lands.

“Although the Nevada Legislature does not have the authority to make decisions regarding WSAs, it can make recommendations to Nevada’s congressional delegation based on information provided at these meetings,” Rhoads said. “All Nevadans deserve to have a voice in this issue.”

Copyright © 2002 The Reno Gazette-Journal
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