Zinke Reorganization Plan Moves Ahead With 12 Interior Regions

Aug 30, 2018

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has released more details about his plan to reorganize the Department of Interior. The plan could have big impacts for public lands in the west.

 

The latest details reveal consolidating the existing 49 regional offices across the country to just 12. Zinke says this will improve efficiency and coordination among agencies.  

"It sounds good on paper," says John Gale. He's with the nonprofit Backcountry Hunters and Anglers.

The Department of the Interior manages more than 530 million acres of federal lands, most of which are in the American West.
Credit Bureau of Land Management

Gale says the recreation community is watching how the reorganization could affect public lands. He has some concerns. 

"Is this the right time to move such an enormous transition, when we have information gaps, leadership gaps and scarce amount of resources that could be going to places that we absolutely know now that would be doing good things?"  

The plan has long included a move out west for the department’s headquarters. Zinke’s office has not yet announced a location. The department says it plans to begin moving forward with the reorganization plan this fall. 

Find reporter Amanda Peacher on Twitter @amandapeacher.

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