Mining group latest to sue government over sage-grouse land use plans (Elko Daily – April 20, 2016)

ELKO – The American Exploration & Mining Association has joined in the fight over federal land use plans and sage-grouse.

The group filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the federal government in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia seeking to overturn the Sage-Grouse Great Basin and Rocky Mountain Records of Decision and underlying land use plan amendments in seven western states. The lawsuit is against the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Forest Service and several federal employees.

AEMA becomes the latest to challenge the plans following lawsuits lodged by the states of Idaho, Utah, nine Nevada counties, the Wyoming Coalition of Local Governments, ranchers, miners and various industry groups. Elko and Eureka counties, a few mining companies, and the Nevada Attorney General were among the first groups to file.

“The illegal, draconian land use restrictions and mineral withdrawals have restricted multiple-use and economic access to millions of acres of federal land across 10 western states,” AEMA stated.

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