Special to the Herald TimesRBC I Issue: Rescind DOI Secretarial Order 3310.Proposed Policy: The National Association of Counties strongly urges that Secretary Salazar immediately rescind Order 3310 that calls for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to inventory “Wild Lands” and manage them for wilderness without Congressional approval. NACo urges Congress to enact legislation stating unequivocally that Congressional approval is required prior to any special designation of federally managed public lands.Background: Secretary Salazar Issued Order 3310 overturning the established policy on new wilderness inventories on public land, eliminating public process and violating the intent of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), as only Congress has the authority to designate lands as Wilderness. Secretarial Order 3310 directs the Bureau of Land Management to begin to inventory, designate and manage Federal lands as Wilderness, independent of the United States Congress. It undermines the established public process for land use planning and expressly violates the intent of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, as only Congress has the authority to designate lands as Wilderness. Counties should be fully involved as affected partners in any process to designate wilderness.Congress and Federal agencies should coordinate with affected counties when considering special land use designations that impact the use and status of public lands. NACo strongly opposes the actions by the Interior Department and maintains our members’ position opposing Federal land management agency actions that limit access and multiple use of lands that otherwise would be available to the public (i.e. Wilderness Study Areas, “Wild Lands,” or any other de facto wilderness designation).In the Norton vs Utah settlement, BLM and Utah acknowledged that “management of Post-603 lands to preserve their alleged wilderness character is inconsistent with FLPMA’s Section 603 limited delegation of authority,” (par. 17 at p. 8) and that BLM “will not establish, manage, or otherwise treat public lands, other than Section 603 WSAs and Congressionally designated wilderness, as WSAs or as wilderness pursuant to the Section 202 process absent congressional authorization.” (par. 5 at p. 12) Fiscal/Urban/Rural Impact: The active management of America’s Public lands to accommodate beneficial multiple uses is essential to the public health, safety and economic vitality of communities across the United States. Public lands that receive special designations are removed from multiple use and prohibit activities vital to the nation, including mineral exploration and harvesting, ranching, agriculture, energy generation from renewable resources, military training and most types of recreational activities. Revenues generated from public land support critical state and local government services and loss of such revenues would further cripple the economies of local communities and place unnecessary new burdens on State and local government and school budgets.Sponsors: Nevada Association of Counties; Utah Association of Counties; and Wyoming Association of Counties. Public lands committee passed resolution by a large margin (no minority report) Environment, Energy and Land Use passed resolution by a large margin (no minority report).