About

Our Mission

To preserve and defend rights to access, use, and benefit from public lands within the State.

Our Objectives

  1. Advocate balanced and sustainable stewardship of Utah’s public lands.
  2. Educate the public and elected officials regarding public lands issues.
  3. Promote the responsible use and preservation of archaeological resources.
  4. Defend the public lands policies of the State.
  5. Facilitate the exchange of information and recommendations among agencies, and act as the unified voice of the State for public lands policy.

Where Do We Fit in the State Government?

We are a part of the Governor’s office along with Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice, Office of the Governor’s Spouse, Office of Planning and Budget, and Utah Commission on Aging. We also staff Resource Development Coordinating Committee, which is a part of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget.

See Executive Branch structure taken from the Utah State Government Organization Charts (August 2012) prepared by the Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel.

Our Work

 Development and Coordination of Policy Initiatives

Resource Development Coordinating Committee (RDCC)

  • WE OVERSEE AND STAFF the Resource Development Coordinating Committee responsible for commenting on development and conservation proposals on Utah’s public lands. Check the RDCC current work on Endangered Species Act listings.

Constitutional Defense Council (CDC)

  • WE PROVIDE RESEARCH AND ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT to the Constitutional Defense Council that advises the Governor and the Legislature on federal intrusion into matters reserved to the states.

Litigation

  • WE DEFEND the State’s policies and interests on public lands by providing research, staff, and litigation support to the Attorney General’s Office. We are currently involved in the R.S. 2477 road cases, Abdo v. Reyes (a suit challenging Tooele County R.S. 2477 road case), litigation against environmental groups’ challenge to the Bureau of Land Management’s Resource Management Plans, and litigation against the federal government designating certain lands as “de facto” wilderness in contravention of the WSA designation process (Uintah County v. Salazar).

Archaeology

  • WE WORK TO PRESERVE thousands of archaeological sites located on Utah’s public lands. We coordinate preservation of our archaeological heritage with other state and federal agencies. We also issue permits to regulate proper survey and excavation of archeological resources.

State Planning Coordinator

  • WE COOPERATE WITH THE STATE PLANNING COORDINATOR to develop policies, plans, programs, and processes related to the state planning coordinator’s duties. The state planning coordinator acts as the Governor’s adviser on state, regional, metropolitan, and local governmental planning matters relating to public improvements and land use. See Utah Code § 63J-4-401 for a complete list of duties.

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