Grazing decisions disappoint environmental groups, ranchers in Idaho

Posted: Jan 24, 2011

Written by

The Idaho Statesman

Grazing was a hot issue last week and neither the environmental community nor the Idaho Cattle Association got what they wanted.

First the environmentalists: The Obama administration tossed water on one of the reform initiatives that environmental groups have been pushing for 20 years — raising grazing fees.

The fees for grazing — just $1.35 per cow and calf per month in 2010 — are based on a formula that critics say is far below market rates.

This is the fourth year in a row that the fee was set at its lowest legal limit. The 2011 fee will be announced at the end of January.

The departments of Agriculture and Interior both denied a petition from a coalition of environmental groups, which had sued to change the grazing formula.

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