U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
EMS TRANSMSSION 06/15/2007
Instruction Memorandum 2007-137
To: All Field Officials except Alaska and Eastern States
From: Assistant Director, Renewable Resources and Planning
Subject: Idaho District Court Order Enjoins Grazing Regulations
Program Area: Grazing Administration – Exclusive of Alaska
Purpose: This Instruction Memorandum (IM) instructs the field to stop implementing all changes to the grazing regulations (43 CFR Part 4100) that were promulgated on July 12, 2006.
Background: IM 2007-004, “Grazing Regulations Status” (October 10, 2006), provides additional background. That IM described the status of the lawsuits filed in Idaho Federal District Court which challenged the legality the grazing regulation changes promulgated on July 12, 2006 and instructed field offices not to implement some of the changes in accordance with the Court’s orders. IM 2007-004 also transmitted grazing regulations that reflected the Court’s orders.
On June 8, 2007 the Court issued a Memorandum Decision and Order that decided in favor of the plaintiffs. The Court ordered “that the BLM regulations set forth in the Federal Register of July 12, 2006, 43 CFR Part 4100 et. seq., are ENJOINED in all respects.” The Court also stated that it will “not issue a final judgment at this time” because it assumes “that issues remain to be resolved in this case.”
Policy/Action: In accordance with the Court’s June 8, 2007 Memorandum Decision and Order, BLM will not implement any of the regulatory changes published on July 12, 2006 at this time. We are continuing to review the Memorandum Decision and Order, and further instructions are possible as that review continues. Attached for your use is a copy of the grazing regulations as they existed before they were changed by the July 12, 2006 rulemaking. Field offices should use this set of grazing regulations, with the exception of the regulatory provisions regarding “conservation use” permits. The conservation use provisions were set aside and enjoined by the Wyoming District Court in 1996 and shall not be used.
To be consistent with the Idaho Court Ruling, changes to the service charges have been made in the automated billing system (Rangeland Administration System (RAS)). Field offices will not need to modify billing processes. Service charges billed between June 8th and the effective date of this IM, which were affected by the Ruling should be adjusted (contact Leon Pack at (303) 236-0156 or Philip Cooley at (303) 236-3693 for assistance). Service charges billed between August 11, 2006 and June 8, 2007 are still valid and are not to be adjusted.
Timeframe: Effective Immediately.
Budget Impact: Implementation of this Instruction Memorandum will generally have no budgetary impacts since many of the amended regulations have never been implemented. However, as a result of the June 8, 2007 Court Order any anticipated budgetary benefits of the amended regulations, e.g., revenue generated by service charges, will not occur.
Manual/Handbook Sections Affected: No manuals or handbooks are affected.
Coordination: The IM has been coordinated with the Solicitor’s Office.
Contact: Rob Roudabush, Acting Chief, Division of Rangeland Resources, (202) 785-6569.