Rep. O’Halleran Statement on Redrawing of National Monument Boundaries

December 4, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today Congressman Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01) blasted President Donald Trump’s decision to shrink Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments, calling the move shortsighted and detrimental to ongoing conservation efforts and the preservation of Native American history. Five area Native American tribes supported the designation of Bears Ears, including the Hopi and Navajo Nation, both of which Congressman O’Halleran represents in Congress.

“Our public lands are national treasures. They are home to the most beautiful natural wonders and thousands of years of history,” said Rep. O’Halleran. “President Trump’s decision to redraw the boundaries of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante reverses the traditions of presidents from both parties setting aside important lands for conservation.

During a visit to Utah on Monday, President Trump announced the downsizing of the monuments’ borders. This decision goes beyond the recommendations of the Interior Department.

“This move is unprecedented and shortsighted. It will be detrimental to the ongoing conservation efforts taking place to preserve these natural wonders and cultural sites,” continued O’Halleran. “This cannot stand.”

Rep. O’Halleran is an original cosponsor of legislation introduced by Rep. Ruben Gallego (AZ-07) to protect the Bears Ears National Monument.