Governor: Utah must play active role to manage public land

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Republican Gov. Gary Herbert says Utah must stand up to an overreaching federal government to play an active role managing the state's public lands.

Herbert said in his annual State of the State speech Wednesday night that he supports a comprehensive plan by U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, to set aside Utah lands for protection, energy development, recreation and other uses.

Bishop plans to introduce his plan as legislation in Congress.

Herbert did not mention Wednesday a law he signed in 2012 that demands the federal government hand over control of more than 30 million acres of land.

Utah officials argue the state would be a better manager and set a 2015 deadline for the government to cede control.

That deadline has passed but lawmakers say they may force the issue in court.

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