WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov. 20, 2019) — The Bureau of Land Management is relocating its headquarter’s functions and other supporting offices to the American West. The BLM Headquarters move west means that most of the positions currently located in Washington, D.C., will move to a new location.
The BLM director, deputy director of operations, assistant directors and a few members of their staffs will be located in Grand Junction, Colorado. In addition, more than 200 positions currently performing headquarter duties in the D.C. area will relocate to Western states where BLM has a significant presence.
About 60 positions from programs with inherently D.C.-based responsibilities — like legislative, regulatory and public affairs, budget, and Freedom of Information Act compliance, as well as the Deputy Director for Policy and Programs — will stay in the D.C. area.
The timeframe for the relocation is between Nov. 1, 2019, through July 1, 2020.
Why move? According to the BLM press release, the move makes sesne because more than 99 percent* of public lands and programs are located in the Western half of the United States.
“This move will benefit the public we serve as well as the bureau and our employees. Moving the people who make critical decisions about the lands and programs we manage will help provide a greater on-the-ground understanding and will also foster better partnerships with communities and organizations there,” the press release reads.
BLM has a long and proud history of serving the nation by responsibly managing land and resources for the use and enjoyment of the American people. The BLM is responsible for managing public lands for a variety of uses such as energy and mineral development, livestock grazing, recreation, and timber harvesting while ensuring natural, cultural, and historic resources are maintained for present and future generations.
Given the need for additional technical experience in the field, the Bureau will reassign 76 headquarters positions to perform critical duties within BLM State Offices.
“Of all the resources we are entrusted to manage, the most valuable resource the BLM has is our dedicated, knowledgeable workforce. The quality of the important work the BLM does for the nation is due entirely to the dedicated, highly professional women and men who work for the organization, both in D.C. and in the field,” the press release continues.
“While we hope all affected employees will be able to follow their positions to the new locations, we understand that the decision for most people has many factors. We are committed to making sure that all employees have the information and resources they need to make the best decision and will continue to work with employees to ease the transition.
“Change is challenging but necessary and we believe this relocation will ultimately be the best decision for the bureau and its people as we move into the future.”
To learn more about the BLM Headquarters relocation, please see the Frequently Asked Questions compiled on the BLM website.
*The 99 percent number applies to the 245 million acres of surface area the BLM manages. The BLM also manages 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate for the nation.