Supervisors to discuss BLM travel plan Monday

September 16, 2018

KINGMAN — Mohave County supervisors will discuss a draft of a travel management plan for access to public lands in the county at Monday’s regular meeting in Kingman.

The supervisors will discuss the plan and an environmental assessment for the Black Mountains, Hualapai Mountains and other mountain ranges within the Bureau of Land Management’s Kingman field office.

In the travel management plan, the BLM is proposing to close about 1,630 miles of the 5,502 miles of existing road designations.

Mohave County Public Works Director Steve Latoski said the closures may be because of BLM’s lack of resources to manage and maintain the trails.

On Feb. 14, the supervisors stated their opposition to the closing of roads and trails on BLM and other public lands and expressed concern with new restrictions the public faces in accessing public lands.

The supervisors said new language should be added to state that right of ways and easements create a legal right to keep open legal access to private property. The Mining Act of 1866 grants a right of way for construction of highways over public lands not reserved for public uses.

Sierra Club Arizona Chapter Director Sandy Bahr said it was another attempt by the county to assert control of federal public lands, which belong to all Americans. More roads can fragment the habitat and cause unhealthy levels of air pollution including dust, she said.

“The one thing Arizona has is plenty of roads, way too many in fact,” Bahr said. “The county should spend more time working to protect the health of the people of Mohave County and less time working to dole out political favors.”

The supervisors will meet at 9:30 a.m. Monday at the county administration building at 700 W. Beale St. in Kingman.

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