Federal court hears appeal on Canyonlands roads
Written bySTEVEN K. PAULSON, Associated Press
The federal government said Wednesday it has control over highway access in national monuments even if no official notice was given, in a case that could affect highway rights of way on federal public land across the country.
Aaron Avila, attorney for the U.S. Justice Department, told an appeals court panel Wednesday that the federal government had the right to close a disputed highway right of way in an ecologically sensitive streambed in Canyonlands National Park in southeastern Utah. He said no one objected when barriers were put up in the 1970s in parts of a canyon limiting access, even though there were other access roads.
Government supporters said the case could affect thousands of highway rights of way across federal public land nationwide, including areas that have been protected from roads and off-road vehicle use for years.VIEW ORIGINAL ARTICLE