Federal bill could improve access to public lands

Rog hunt 2013
Photo by Roger Phillips
Republican Congressman Steve Daines of Montana on Jan. 27 introduced legislation– “Making Public Lands Public Access Act”–that guarantees funding for improving access to existing public lands. This legislation, H.R. 3962, is supported by the Boone and Crockett Club and other hunting organizations, according to a press release from Boone and Crockett Club. The bill directs the U.S. Forest Service and BLM to acquire rights of way and other land interests from willing private sellers to open access to public lands for hunting and fishing where it is closed or impractical.

“Sportsmen and women want the Forest Service and BLM to provide better access to our national forests and BLM lands for hunting and fishing. Congressman Daines is tackling this problem head on with this bill,” said Bill Demmer, president of the Boone and Crockett Club.

Daines is a member of the bipartisan Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus within the U.S. House of Representatives.

The nonpartisan Center for Western Priorities recently released a study that estimated Western states have 4 million acres of inaccessible public lands blocked by private lands, including 163,314 acres in Idaho.

To track the progress of the bill, go HERE.

Posted in Into the Outdoors