Mesa County Residents Comment On Proposed BLM Route Closures

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MESA COUNTY, Colo.- Mesa County Commissioners held a town hall meeting with residents to discuss the 300-plus miles of recreational routes that the Bureau of Land Management proposes to be closed in its plan.

According to commissioner, Rose Pugliese, these route closures may be bad news for the economy and Mesa County can’t afford to have anything affect recreational opportunities. But that wasn’t the biggest issue tonight, concerned resident’s say that the BLM travel management plan limits public land access to people with disabilities.

“If they close those – how many old folks here, in town that do go hunting, do go fishing… rely on their four-wheelers to get back on the back-country and there not going to be able to,” Mesa County resident, Ron Arellano said.

But BLM officials say that’s not the case.

“What we hear about most is that we’ve closed too many routes to motorized travel, but I think if people really look at our routes on the ground there going to find that there is still ample access, about 2,400 miles or so, enough to drive from Grand Junction to New York City,” Bureau of Land Management, Joe Meyer said.

Both Mesa County commissioners and BLM officials, a moving forward with the compromise that 207 miles of routes will be deferred, meaning there will be more time for additional review. Mesa County commissioners will continue to take input from residents before making any negotiations with BLM.

If you would like to submit any comment or concerns in regard to the BLM route closures, you can do so by contacting the Mesa County planning office during business hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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