Zinke: Upper Missouri Breaks will keep its national monument statusSource: Helena Independent Record
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WHITEFISH — U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said Tuesday he plans to recommend the Upper Missouri Breaks retain its status as a national monument, effectively taking it off the list of monuments nationwide that could lose their status.
“My likely recommendation will be to leave the Missouri Breaks as is,” Zinke said. “I think it’s settled to a degree that I would rather not open up a wound that has been healed.”
Zinke was tasked earlier this year by the Trump Administration to review national monuments over 100,000 acres designated after 1996. Following his recommendation to reduce the size of the Bear’s Ears National Monument in Utah earlier this month, there has been a concern the same could happen for the Upper Missouri.
He said the Missouri Breaks is currently under a management plan developed by Montanans that protects the unique natural area, ensures public access and maintains traditional uses, including grazing.
Zinke said he believed the issue was settled and it caused disruption to reopen it.