The Department of the Interior is relocating hundreds of employees of the Bureau of Land Management from Washington, D.C. throughout the western United States, and some of the bureaucrats aren’t happy to be moved from the capital.
The relocations of around 250 federal employees are mandatory. Selected BLM bureaucrats who decline to relocate closer to the great expanses of federal land the agency administers will be placed into removal proceedings.
The employees are slated to be moved to a new BLM headquarters in Grand Junction, Colorado, and various field offices throughout the western United States.
Critics of the federal bureaucracy have increasingly called for the federal government to more evenly distribute the D.C. federal workforce throughout the country in recent years.
Sources describe the BLM workforce as reluctant to consider moving closer to the federal lands the agency administers as leadership seeks to direct them to. It’s unclear why the Land Management employees don’t want to move to the states most crucial to their agency’s daily operations, such as Arizona or Colorado.
Department of the Interior employees have pushed back on attempts to distribute the department’s workforce evenly in the past, preferring a model that would quarter the entity responsible for managing federal lands squarely in Washington, D.C.
The BLM has become somewhat of a controversial federal agency in recent years, in part because of dramatic “standoff” feuds with ranchers and rural Americans who object to what they see as encroaching attempts by the distant agency to dictate over and control their behavior.
If the Bureau of Land Management is unable to move the workforce into the western U.S. in order to better serve the citizens most prevalently affected by its operations, it’s likely that the agency would be able to find many qualified applicants for open positions who already reside in (and love) the western states in question.
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