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Land Management in New Mexico

October 2, 2020 – William Perry Pendley, deputy director for policy and programs at the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, visited New Mexico in September. On that trip, he traveled around the state and visited Chaco Culture National Historical Park, a hotspot for the agency, which is developing two million acres of oil and gas leases in the area. During his visit, Pendley spoke with NMiF correspondent Laura Paskus about his vision for the agency, which oversees 700 million acres of land in the West. The day after this conversation took place, a federal judge blocked Pendley from continuing to act as the agency’s de facto director. Although Pendley has served in a leadership role since July 2019, he was not confirmed by the U.S. Senate. The Trump administration is appealing the judge’s ruling, and according to a statement from Dan Jorjani, solicitor of the U.S. Department of the Interior, Secretary David Bernhardt will lead the agency, but continue to rely on the agency’s “superior management team” and specifically upon Pendley. 

Correspondent: Laura Paskus 

William Perry Pendley, Bureau of Land Management 

For More Information:
Trump to Appeal Court Decision on BLM Chief – NPR 
Perry Pendley Stays on After Nixed Nomination – Colorado Sun 
Controversy Over BLM Feedback ProcessFarmington Daily Times 
BLM Continues Chaco Plan During PandemicNavajo Times 
Drilling Deep – KUNM Radio