The U.S. House of Representatives is currently considering two bills that could put up millions of acres of National Forest lands for state control. The bills are being debated by the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands.
Chamois Andersen is the executive director of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation. The federation has partnered with the Wyoming Sportsmen Alliance to fight the bills. "So we have joined and created a coalition for public lands to counter this political movement in the west and in Wyoming. And to make sure our voice is heard, not only in our Wyoming legislature, but also with Congress," Andersen says.
Andersen says public lands belong to everyone, not just the state. "This is our birth right as citizens - to have these lands. It was the intention of Teddy Roosevelt to make sure we have places to go to enjoy and benefit from our heritage," Andersen says.
Andersen says the bills would allow the state to fast-tack development of the lands, and the results could be damaging to the environment.