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Tribal leaders look for suggestions on Bison Range operation - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Tribal leaders look for suggestions on Bison Range operation

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Public comment being sought on takeover proposal. (MTN News photo) Public comment being sought on takeover proposal. (MTN News photo)
PABLO -

Tribal leaders are encouraging people to offer suggestions now on a proposal to shift management of the National Bison Range over to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.

The tribes are working on draft legislation to assume management of the bison range at the suggestion of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The service proposed the switch earlier this year, shifting responsibility for the operation of the refuge, which was established in 1908 over to the tribe. 

At a meeting in Pablo on Tuesday, there wasn't any outwardly strong showing of people opposed to the idea, although some have expressed concerns about the Bison Range being withdrawn from the wildlife refuge system. 

The meeting featured presentations from the tribe, but was primarily focused on a workshop to answer questions and take input…

"What suggestions would you make that might change or strengthen the draft legislation? Think about all the interests that are here. So that we sort of move this forward in a positive way rather than getting stuck in some of the issues that are out there," facilitator Virginia Tribe said.

The Tribe is continuing to take written comments on the proposed legislation at a special website until July 15th. 

RELATED: Bison Range management change up for public comment

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