Omnibus public lands bill carries Craig’s water

In October, Ralph commented on Larry Craig dropping his opposition to protecting the Snake River in Wyoming.  A change of heart from an Idaho politician renowned for his anti-environmentalist zeal ?  Not quite.  The bill is lumped with a bunch of bills in the massive Omnibus public lands bill.  The motivation for Craig’s “turnabout” is perhaps made more clear with a blog post Rocky Barker wrote that I missed but is worth posting even a week later.  Craig has slapped onto the bill $3 million for the environmental & economic studies necessary to initiate new dams on the Snake, Boise, and Payette rivers, including the potential to rebuild the historic Teton Dam :

Craig leaves water studies hidden in omnibus billLetter from the West, Rocky Barker

Craig himself put out an editorial in November outlining all the good things he included in the omnibus bill including compensation for ranchers who lose livestock to wolves, more thinning of national forests to reduce wildfire danger and even the Wyoming bill he first opposed. But he left out the authorization of the water feasibility studies.

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Senate to consider major public lands bill

It has over 90 titles. Some of these are very controversial with conservationists, such as the Owyhee Public Lands Management Act in Idaho.

News Release from Campaign for America’s Wilderness. Senate to consider major public lands bill.

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