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Mead Says GTNP Land Sale Must Continue

November 8, 2012 Grand Teton National Park, State of Wyoming No Comments
news conf.

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead spoke of various budget concerns during a news conference yesterday, addressing proposed cuts and dwindling revenue sources.  Among the concerns is the apparent inability of the federal government to come up with the money necessary to consummate the sale of state lands inside Grand Teton National Park.  Mead says while he still thinks it is right that the lands remain part of the national park, the government needs to reimburse the state for the money that is appropriate to the value of the land.  While he still thinks it could be accomplished, right now it appears tenuous whether or not they’re going to get it done.  Mead says he will continue to push for the deal to be completed.  If it doesn’t happen he says the state will still have the land and will examine what other options are available.  However, he says he is willing to stay somewhat flexible with the deadline to complete the deal. He says while the state is going to try to hold to the timeline set out for the consummation of the deal, if it appears it will be week or two late, the state will certainly wait.  However, he says the state’s interests need to be protected and so the wait will not be indefinite.  Phase one of the 3-phase sale of the nearly 1400 acres has already been completed, but the Department of the Interior is now saying the second phase, scheduled for January 2013, might not occur. Legislation to fund the deal has been stalled in Washington since early this year.  The sale of the land inside Grand Teton National Park for $17-million was approved and  enabling legislation signed in February of 2011.

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