BLM secures site for Western Leadership Office
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. – In July, the Department of the Interior (DOI) announced it was moving ahead with a carefully developed plan that will place the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) leadership closer to the lands and resources the BLM manages. Taking the next step in improving services for the American people and its neighbors in Western communities, the Department announced today that it has reached an agreement for office space in Grand Junction, Colorado to house the new headquarters for the BLM.
The BLM worked with the General Services Administration (GSA) to identify suitable properties and develop the lease, which became effective today.
The lease, at 760 Horizon Drive in Grand Junction, will provide the BLM with office space for national senior leadership and support staff, including the agency’s Director, Deputy Director for Operations and several Assistant Directors. The lease terms will provide the bureau with significant cost savings compared to the current arrangement in Washington, D.C.
“Standing up the headquarters is another step in providing better service to the American people and our neighbors in the West,” said Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt.
“Today marks an important step for the Bureau. The relocation of our headquarters will provide significant benefits, including more efficient operations and being a better neighbor to western communities,” said BLM Deputy Director for Programs and Policy William Perry Pendley. “These are things the BLM has always stood for and align well with the Department’s priorities.”
Throughout the process, DOI officials have worked closely with the BLM State Directors to ensure that the new staffing arrangements make sense with the resource issues in each state.
“Having specialists in mining, geothermal energy, renewable energy, and wild horse and burro management will be an asset to the BLM workforce in Nevada,” said Jon Raby, BLM Nevada State Director. “We look forward to the benefits of having additional staff supporting national priorities in our state.”
“The presence of headquarters positions in BLM-Colorado will serve our diverse resource needs, from minerals to recreation and business and fiscal management, said BLM Colorado State Director Jamie Connell. “The State and the entire Bureau will benefit from the policies and procedures these positions are responsible for, which directly impact the agency's day-to-day operations. We look forward to welcoming these employees, including BLM senior leadership, to our beautiful state.”
“Given the significant activity across the state, BLM-New Mexico will benefit from support for the minerals program, resource management planning, and our cultural, paleontological and tribal programs,” said BLM New Mexico State Director Tim Spisak. “These positions will promote better coordination, including with our partners on the ground.”
The BLM has advertised 19 positions, all currently vacant, that will be located in the new headquarters. These positions are posted on USA Jobs and include senior leadership and experienced senior staff roles, as well as three Senior Executive Service positions. In addition to staffing the Grand Junction office, a majority of other Washington Office positions are being relocated to multiple western states.
Located midway between Denver and Salt Lake City, Grand Junction, Colorado, is the largest metropolitan area in western Colorado. The regional airport currently has 17 daily direct flights to eight cities, with 30 daily one-connection departures to Washington, D.C. The GSA Region 8 office managed the leasing and acquisition process, in accordance with federal law and regulations.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in the 11 Western states and Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. In fiscal year 2018, the diverse activities authorized on BLM-managed lands generated $105 billion in economic output across the country. This economic activity supported 471,000 jobs and contributed substantial revenue to the U.S. Treasury and state governments, mostly through royalties on minerals.