BLM Asking for Public Input on Ranch Acquisition

by Colter Brown

The Bureau of Land Management Casper Field Office is seeking public input on a preliminary environmental assessment that provides supplemental analysis on the Marton Ranch Acquisition EA completed in May 2022. The agency purchased the nearly 36,000 acre ranch in Natrona and Carbon counties last year.

The Central Wyoming ranch includes about 9 miles of the North Platte River and opens access to 40,000 acres of previously blocked public land. It was the largest land purchase ever made by the BLM in Wyoming.

In June 2022, the State of Wyoming appealed the BLM’s decision with the Interior Board of Land Appeals (IBLA). The BLM and the State reached an agreement on October 21, 2022, with the IBLA issuing an order to set aside and remand the BLM’s decision in order for the BLM to re-analyze its decision, provide additional opportunities for public notice and comment, and supplement its environmental analysis.

As part of the settlement, BLM agreed to conduct additional analysis of resource issues raised by the State of Wyoming in its appeal of the BLM’s decision. The preliminary EA does not consider future decisions regarding potential uses of the land, but rather further evaluates the environmental impacts associated with BLM’s decision to purchase the land.

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon is calling on Wyoming citizens to provide comments to the BLM.

“Embracing multiple use principles, which in this case includes increased public access, on public lands has many benefits to the public and Wyoming. That is why I did not oppose this project but opposed the process used. Meaningful public input and environmental analysis are critical steps in any federal land acquisition process, and this public comment period is necessary to fulfill the agreement between the BLM and the State of Wyoming,” Governor Gordon stated.

Gordon added, “I encourage interested members of the public to take advantage of this time to be involved. I also appreciate the cooperation and communication with the Wyoming and Casper BLM offices, who have ensured our state agencies were consulted during the supplemental analysis. I look forward to the future land-use planning process and seeing what opportunities the future of this land may hold.” 

From the BLM’s announcement: Comments will be accepted in writing or through the BLM’s ePlanning website linked below. To review the preliminary EA or to submit comments, visit Hard copy comments can be mailed or hand-delivered to the BLM Casper Field Office, Attn: Mike Robinson, 2987 Prospector Dr., Casper, WY 82604. For more information, please call the Casper Field Office at (307) 261-7600.


BLM/Gov. Mark Gordon

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