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BLM schedules meetings about Carlsbad Resource Management Plan

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The U.S. Bureau of Land Management has announced a series of public meetings this month related to the draft of the Carlsbad Resources Management Plan and the related Environmental Impact Statement.

The plan outlines how the federal agency intends to manage the public lands, livestock grazing access, mineral resources, wildlife, vegetation, water and other resources over which it has authority. It covers 6.2 million acres, primarily in Lea and Eddy counties but also in the boothill section of Chaves County. Once approved, it will replace a plan originally developed in 1988.

A 90-day public comment period began Aug. 3, and, as part of that, the BLM Carlsbad Office is holding nine meetings in southeast New Mexico and West Texas to provide information and allow for comments.

The meeting in Roswell is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 18, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Holiday Inn, 3620 N. Main St.

Other meetings are scheduled from Sept. 17 to Sept. 27 in Carlsbad, Artesia, Hope, Albuquerque, Jal, Hobbs, and Midland, Texas. The complete listing can be found on the BLM website, blm.gov, or obtained by calling the Carlsbad Field Office at 575-234-5968.

The Chaves County Board of Commissioners has expressed concerns about some of the possible effects should more areas in the county be designated as Lands With Wilderness Characteristics or Areas of Critical Environmental Concern, which could restrict the use of the parcels for livestock grazing, oil and gas development or other business uses.