It takes years of local public meetings, studies, evaluations and negotiations to arrive at boundaries and land-use plans for a national monument. So it is true that supporters of our national monuments are likely to protest and support legal action against the reduction of current monuments. The work has been done, the boundaries have been agreed upon. Gold Butte has been supported by a large majority of Nevadans, and it is managed by locals employed by the federal government.
Legal action means that the water right issues involving Gold Butte could get held up in the courts for years. We don’t have time to waste to address these water issues. Fortunately, there is another way: Leave the monument boundaries intact and work through the right-of-way issues at Gold Butte in the management plan. This would to be a win-win for all.