Study: Livestock Grazing on Public Lands Cost Taxpayers $1 Billion Over Past Decade

cattleRanchers I’ve known receive public funds to build livestock management facilities on public lands. When ranchers do the work themselves, the income can equal income from cattle sales. Only the ranchers benefit from the facilities. At the same time, the ranchers complain about government regulations. They threaten to take their guns to town, and sometimes they do go armed to meetings with BLM and FS managers.

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Information supplied by The Center for Biological Diversity

BLM’s Welfare Ranching Bedfellows come with a huge price tag…

WASHINGTON— A new analysis  finds U.S. taxpayers have lost more than $1 billion over the past decade on a program that allows cows and sheep to graze on public land. Last year alone taxpayers lost $125 million in grazing subsidies on federal land. Had the federal government charged fees similar to grazing rates on non-irrigated private land, the program would have made $261 million a year on average rather than operate at a staggering loss, the analysis finds.

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The study, Costs and Consequences: The Real Price of Livestock Grazing on America’s Public Lands, comes as the Obama administration prepares Friday to announce grazing fees for the upcoming year on 229 million acres of publicly owned land, most of it in the West. The…

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