New documents show Zinke ignored local experts when he shrank the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

The U.S. Department of the Interior went against the expertise of on-the-ground Utah Bureau of Land Management officials when it reduced the size of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument by one million acres in late 2017, according to documents obtained by the Western Values Project. Former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke claimed at the time that the national monument was hurting the local economy, when in fact, the Utah BLM concluded that the monument contributed $50 million in value and 1,024 jobs to the region in 2016 alone. As we suspected, looks like Zinke ignored the mountain of evidence for keeping the monument intact to hand out favors to his industry pals instead.

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