Bozeman man sues governor over forest priorities
A Bozeman man is suing Gov. Steve Bullock and three top administration officials, alleging they should have gathered public input before nominating 5.1 million acres of U.S. Forest Service land for restoration.
Steve Kelly filed the lawsuit in District Court in Gallatin County on Tuesday. He is asking the court to void Bullock's recommendation and require that Bullock and the state Department of Natural Resources and Conservation to conduct properly noticed public meetings.
Earlier this month, Bullock identified the land he says should be restored, saying the forest areas are declining in health, have a risk of increased tree deaths or pose a safety risk. The restoration work would include some logging.
Bullock says conservationists, forest rangers, county commissioners and the wood products industry collaborated in selecting the land.