Colorado’s Canyon of the Ancients National Monument near Cortez has been taken off a federal review list after the Interior Secretary recommended it should remain intact. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
It’s part of a larger review of national monuments and public lands ordered by President Trump. Secretary the Interior Ryan Zinke called Canyons of the Ancients “gorgeous land” – adding that its monument status as the most high-density Native American archaeological sites in the country should be preserved.
Jessica Goad with Conservation Colorado is pleased with the decision. “We just think that this review should never have happened in the first place and it’s really a political game that’s been played with our public lands and national monuments.”
Other environmental group were also critical of Zinke. The Center for Western Priorities said it’s absurd to praise the secretary for simply announcing that he’s not removing protections. Trump launched a national review of 27 monuments. Monuments in Idaho and Washington State have also been removed from review and a report is set for next month.