Zinke grills agency leaders over Glacier permit system, grizzly bear policy
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: March 31, 2023

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Today, Western Montana Congressman Ryan Zinke questioned senior officials at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), National Parks Service (NPS) and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) at the House Appropriations Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing.

National Parks Service:

Congressman Zinke pressed the Director of NPS Charles Sams on park rationing, specifically at Glacier National Park so locals aren’t locked out of their community’s park due to ticketing and time restraints. As Secretary, Zinke was the principal architect of the Great American Outdoors Act which was the largest investment in the history of our nation’s outdoor spaces.

Watch the clip of Rep. Zinke questioning the NPS here.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service:

Rep. Zinke also questioned Director of USFWS Martha Williams on the delay to delist grizzly bears in the GYE as an endangered species when we should be celebrating a win and offboarding the species from the list.

In February, Rep. Zinke introduced a bill to delist the GYE grizzly from the Endangered Species List with Wyoming Congresswoman Harriet Hageman. The bill requires the DOI to reinstate the 2017 final rule removing grizzlies in the GYE from the Federal list of endangered and threatened wildlife within 180 days of enactment. The 2017 rule was issued by then-Secretary Ryan Zinke.

Watch the clip of Rep. Zinke questioning the USFWS here.


Rep. Zinke followed up his hearing yesterday with DOI Secretary Deb Haaland by pressing the Director of BLM Tracy Stone-Manning on refusing to permit the mining of critical minerals in the United States. Secretary Haaland or Director Stone-Manning claimed ignorance to the fact their policies are tightening China’s stronghold on critical minerals, and both claimed they are not aware of China’s status as the world’s number one polluter.

A 2017 report by the U.S. Geological Survey found the U.S. is dependent on China and Russia for 23 of the minerals that are most-needed to sustain our national defense and economy and are used in manufacturing everything from batteries and computer chips to equipment used by our military. The report shows a troubling trend of foreign dependency, which Biden’s DOI contributed to by shutting down mining of a critical minerals in Minnesota.

Watch the clip of Rep. Zinke questioning the BLM here.

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