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After the Trump assassination attempt, defining democracy gets even harder; Trump picks Sen. JD Vance of Ohio, a once-fierce critic turned loyal ally, as his GOP running mate; DC residents push back on natural gas infrastructure buildup; and a new law allows youth on Medi-Cal to consent to mental health treatment.

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Former President Trump is injured but safe after an attempted assassination many condemn political violence. Democrats' fears intensify over Biden's run. And North Carolina could require proof of citizenship to vote.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Montana's Sagebrush Sea: Under New Management

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Wednesday, September 23, 2015   

HELENA, Mont. - Scrubby, sagebrush landscapes on public lands in Montana and throughout the West are being seen in a new way, with the Bureau of Land Management unveiling plans on how those public lands will be treated.

More than half of all sagebrush lands have been lost, said Ken Rait, public lands director at The Pew Charitable Trusts, so the conservation components in the plans will keep habitat strong for big game and birds, keep them open for hunting and other recreation, and allow for development and grazing.

"The Records of Decision that the Bureau of Land Management have come out with are a significant step in bringing a responsible balance to development across the West and conservation of the sage-grouse," he said.

The plans are part of the reason the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided the greater sage-grouse would not be listed under the Endangered Species Act.

Matt Holloran, chief scientist for Wildlife Management Research Support, said this is the largest conservation program ever undertaken by the BLM - but the plans aren't the end of the story.

"For this effort to succeed as it's been planned, I mean, all we have now are plans," he said, "and for the success to happen, the plans need to be implemented."

There are 98 separate plans covering 10 states, each one crafted based on local input.

Plan details are online at blm.gov.


Support for this reporting was provided by The Pew Charitable Trusts.


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