The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is the guardian of a very large parcel of public land in the state of Colorado- perhaps in excess of 8.4 million surface acres and controlling 29 million acres of subsurface mineral rights. The BLM has a state office in Denver and Helen Hankins is the State Director (www.blm.gov/co/st/en.html). The state is then divided into three districts: Front Range District with headquarters in Canon City, the Northwest District headquartered in Grand Junction, and the Southwest District with offices in Montrose. In addition, each of the District Managers is responsible for several field offices (that also have Managers). For example, the Front Range District Office (FRDO) manages most BLM lands in Colorado east of the Continental Divide and has field offices located in Canon City (Royal Gorge), Saguache (San Luis Valley) and Salida (Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area). Each of the three state Districts have a citizen’s advisory committee (~12 members) that meets quarterly (as do most districts located in the western states). I serve on the Front Range Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) and would encourage other interested rock hounds to consider service on these important councils. We recently have studied such diverse items as feral horse populations, the Over the River Project©, geothermal leases, shooting ranges, and gold mining. Since I represent the “dispersed recreation community” (things like rock hounding and recreational gold panning), I am always interested in any legislation or rule changes concerning collecting of rocks, minerals and fossils, and proposed changes to land access.
The Front Range Resource Advisory Committee is seeking nominations (self nominations are fine) for five new members (including dispersed recreation activities). The deadline for receipt of nominations has been extended to June 4. For information see: http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Information/newsroom/2012/blm_extends_nomination0.html