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Federal Court Invalidates Acting Land Bureau Chief’s Decisions

Oct. 19, 2020, 2:59 PM

A federal court overturned the Bureau of Land Management’s resource management plans for three Montana areas last week because the agency’s acting director wasn’t authorized to approve them.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Montana decided Oct. 16 that William Perry Pendley, the agency’s acting director, unlawfully approved resource management plans for Lewistown, Missoula, and Miles City, after reviewing comments and protests. Only the agency’s director can make those calls, the court said.

The decision leaves the door open for challenges from conservation groups, which had identified the bureau’s planning decisions for parts of Alaska, Arizona, California,...

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