BLM Director Cleared of Wrongdoing

BLM Director Cleared of Wrongdoing

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A Bureau of Land Management official has been cleared of wrongdoing after an investigation into her role in a Utah land exchange.

Utah native and B-L-M Director Kathleen Clarke has been cleared after a nearly two-year investigation initiated by Interior Department Inspector General Earl Devaney.

Devaney called for the investigation after identifying Clarke's involvement in 14 meetings or contacts with parties involved in the failed San Rafael land exchange.

The discussions could have violated an agreement Clarke, who had been director of the Utah Department of National Resources, made to prevent conflicts of interest.

Clarke did not return phone messages left by The Salt Lake Tribune yesterday seeking comment.

However, Utah Congressman Chris Cannon and supporter of Clarke said he was glad the inquiry was over. He said he wanted to see what Devaney had to say to justify the years he's kept Clarke from doing her job.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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