Watchdog Group Survey: Bureau Of Land Management Morale Is Low

Published: Monday, March 8, 2021 - 5:13pm
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A survey by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility says that employee morale in the Bureau of Land Management is low. But the agency is likely to change direction under the Biden administration.

On paper, BLM policy embraces multiple uses for the millions of acres it manages. That means it juggles mining, grazing, logging and recreation.

But the survey found the agency had become extremely political and less committed to multiple use during the Trump administration. The report says that one supervisor told his staff: “‘We aren’t here to protect resources. We are here to lease hydrocarbons.’ … Ranchers are known as ‘customers’ … oil and gas companies as the ‘clients.’" 

"I think until that multiple use mandate is clarified, I think with each administration they’re going to see a swing back and forth," said Chandra Rosenthal, a spokeswoman for PEER.

The survey found that understaffing remains a problem within the agency.