WASHINGTON (March 28, 2017) – U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke addressed the livestock grazing industry today during the annual Public Lands Council’s legislative fly-in, in Washington D.C. Secretary Zinke said the agency hasn’t been the best neighbor, but he will be holding the agency accountable and will restore trust in the department.
“We’re going to manage our properties just like you (ranchers) would manage your private lands,” said Zinke. “ Washington D.C. needs to understand that we work for the people, not the other way around.”
The Public Lands Council represents the 22,000 ranchers that utilize grazing permits on federal lands. PLC President Dave Eliason said Zinke was a welcomed addition to the conference and that the ranchers are looking forward to his tenure with the Interior Department.
“Secretary Zinke has consistently been an advocate for western communities that depend on the ranching industry,” said Eliason. “Ranchers have been marginalized and overlooked during planning processes for far too long. We believe Secretary Zinke will bring stakeholders back to table and stand up for those that have invested their time and livelihoods into the management and improvement of our federal lands. We look forward to working with him in his new role and restoring balance to the management of our Western Lands.”