President Trump takes action on two Utah national monuments

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Utah) – President Donald Trump traveled to Utah to announce monumental changes to public lands in our state.

He made the announcement at the Capitol, where inside there was a common theme of gratitude among those in attendance.

"He's coming to talk to the people of Utah. He's coming to respond to the concerns of rural Utah, and I think the president is showing courage that no other president would have done," said Representative Chris Stewart, (R) Utah.

That's how elected officials are responding to an unprecedented move by President Trump.

"With the wise counsel of Senator Hatch, Senator Lee and the many others, I will sign two Presidential Proclamations," said Trump.

The president is slashing the boundaries of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments.

Today, Bears Ears stands at about 1.4 million acres.

The modified version will be about 228,700 acres.

Grand Staircase-Escalante currently covers about 1.8 million acres.

It's being cut to just over one-million acres.

The president says he's doing this, because locals know how to best manage the land.

"These abuses of the Antiquities Act have not just threatened your local economies, they've threatened your very way of life. They have threatened your hearts. Our precious national treasures must be protected, and they, from now on will be," said Trump.

Congress is also going to be following up with action of their own.

"We have to put what they are going to be talking about today in statute, so there will be certainty and it won't be subject to other executives making executive orders to change it, or litigation," said Representative Rob Bishop, (R) Utah.

Representative Bishop and others will be talking more about their legislative plans Tuesday morning.

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