Land management has long been a contentious issue in Utah, where 63 percent of land is federally owned.
Yellowman is one of about 70,000 Navajo who live in homes without running water. Trees are sparse on the Navajo reservation, so to gather wood for cooking and heating, Yellowman goes to the woods in Bears Ears National Monument, about 50 miles north of his home.“We survive off that land,” Yellowman said of Bears Ears, a 1.35 million-acre expanse of high-desert plateaus in southeast Utah. Also, we use different kinds of plants and herbs for basket weaving—people survive on that.
Prior to European-American settlement, the Ute territory stretched across much of Colorado and Utah—Bears Ears included—and as far south as New Mexico.
“As non-Indian settlers moved in, the federal government negotiated a treaty in 1868 that recognized their reservation boundaries essentially as the western third of Colorado.
S.-tribal relations: Obama’s proclamation took the unprecedented step of designating a commission of tribal leaders to consult on management of the monument. In late April, President Donald Trump signed an executive order calling for the Department of the Interior to review national monuments created under previous administrations, dating back to 1996.
The deadline for Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s review of the monument is June 10.