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Miles City Field Office
Release Date: 11/17/09
Contacts: Mark Jacobsen 406-233-2831    

BLM Completes Final Phase of Land Exchange

The Bureau of Land Management formally closed on the second and final phase of a land exchange involving the former Pumpkin Creek Ranch located about 15 miles south of Miles City, Nov. 17.

BLM Eastern Montana – Dakotas District Manager Elaine Raper expressed delight in completing the exchange which now brings the entire block of former private land into public ownership.

“Finalizing the last sections completes the efforts of many individuals who have dedicated their time toward creating a considerable area the public can enjoy,” she said. “We appreciate our partners who have dedicated their time and resources to make this happen.”

The BLM, with the support of The Conservation Fund, began work on the assembled land exchange proposal in 2003. The final phase acquired approximately 1,800 acres of private land remaining within the Pumpkin Creek Ranch using federal lands in Carter County which were identified for consideration, surveyed and appraised, equalizing the value imbalance from the first phase of the exchange.

“The completion of Phase 2 --in addition to Phase 1-- is a significant accomplishment resulting in the consolidation of public lands for future use and management, for now and into future,” said Field Manager Debbie Johnson, of the BLM Miles City Field Office. “It is one of the most important decisions we can make in providing access to large blocks of public land and leaving something for future generations to be able to enjoy.”

“We also appreciate the patience and willingness of both the landowners where the lands were acquired and those landowners who purchased parcels in Carter County in order to make this exchange happen,” said Johnson.

The exchange created a block of approximately 20,556 acres of federal land available for a variety of public uses as well as the management of BLM resource programs. A detailed management plan will be completed that will address various resource uses that can take place on the recreation area.

“We will be addressing management of the newly acquired lands in our Resource Management Plan and will be considering public input received to date in addition to public input sought and received throughout the RMP process,” said Johnson. “We appreciate the continued interest.”

According to Johnson, a celebration will be planned and announced at a future date to commemorate the event.

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.

Miles City Field Office   111 Garryowen Road      Miles City, MT 59301  

Last updated: 06-28-2012