PORTLAND, Ore. - The Bureau of Land Management recently announced that it is seeking public nominations for open positions on 34 Resource Advisory Councils (RACs), including six in Oregon and two in Washington state, which advise the BLM on public land issues.
As published in a notice in the Federal Register, the BLM will consider nominations for 45 days.
The BLM's RACs, composed of citizens chosen for their expertise in natural resource issues, help the Bureau carry out its stewardship of 245 million acres of public lands.
The Bureau, which manages more land than any other Federal agency, has 39 RACs across the West, where most BLM-managed land is located. Each RAC consists of 10 to 15 members with an interest or expertise in public land management, including such individuals as conservationists, ranchers, outdoor recreationists, state and local government officials, Tribal officials, and academics.
The diverse membership of each RAC helps ensure that BLM land managers get the varying perspectives they need to achieve their mission, which is to manage the public lands for multiple uses.
The BLM has eight RACs in Oregon and Washington. They include the Northwest Oregon RAC, Southwest Oregon RAC, Southeast Oregon RAC, Coastal Oregon RAC, John Day-Snake RAC, Eastern Washington RAC, Steens Mountain AC, and San Juan Islands National Monument AC. Additional information about the RACs in Oregon and Washington is available online at: http://www.blm.gov/or/rac/index.php .
"The BLM Resource Advisory Councils are an important forum for the community conversation that is a key component of public land management," said BLM Director Neil Kornze. "With representatives with different land use perspectives, the RACs give community members an opportunity to dig into local issues and explore possible solutions."
Individuals may nominate themselves or others to serve on an advisory council. Nominees, who must be residents of the state or states where the RAC has jurisdiction, will be judged on the basis of their training, education, and knowledge of the council's geographical area.
Nominees should also demonstrate a commitment to consensus building and collaborative decisionmaking. All nominations must be accompanied by letters of reference from any represented interests or organizations, a completed RAC application, and any other information that speaks to the nominee's qualifications.
Each of the 34 RACs has different positions open in the following categories:
Category One – Public land ranchers and representatives of organizations associated with energy and mineral development, the timber industry, transportation or rights-of-way, off-highway vehicle use, and commercial recreation.
Category Two – Representatives of nationally or regionally recognized environmental organizations, archaeological and historical organizations, dispersed recreation activities, and wild horse and burro organizations.
Category Three – Representatives of state, county, or local elected office; representatives and employees of a state agency responsible for the management of natural resources; representatives of Indian Tribes within or adjacent to the area for which the RAC is organized; representatives and employees of academic institutions who are involved in natural sciences; and the public-at-large.