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Dabakis, others urge protections for Greater Canyonlands region



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SALT LAKE CITY — Sen. Jim Dabakis, D-Salt Lake City, is calling on his colleagues on Utah's Capitol Hill to urge Congress and President Barack Obama to enact immediate protections for the state's Greater Canyonlands area.

Dubakis hosted a news conference Tuesday and was joined by Rep. Patrice Arent, D-Salt Lake City, the House sponsor of a joint resolution calling for protections.

SJR10 cites the pristine nature of the Greater Canyonlands region and its value as a undeveloped recreational spot for generations to come. The resolution also touts the infusion of money that outdoor recreation generates for the state — $5.8 billion annually — and the important role Canyonlands National Park plays in that equation.

Dabakis said his measure enjoys broad support from all corners, including hikers, bikers, offroaders, hunters, business leaders and environmental advocates.

"What we have in Utah is not just a park, but an international treasure," he said.

Dabakis is asking residents to be co-sponsors of the resolution by learning more about the effort at www.utahdemocrats.org.

Utah's political landscape is dominated by conservative Republicans, many of whom contend the federal government already has too much control of land in the state and are resistant to any move that would set aside additional acreage.

Email:aodonoghue@ksl.com

Amy Joi O'Donoghue

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