Kane County Ordinance No. 2014-6 is an ordinance adopting Chapter 27 of the Kane County Land Use Ordinances as “The Escalante Region Multiple Use/Multiple Functions Grazing Zone.” The addition of Chapter 27 was recommended for approval at the April 9 Legislative Public Hearing, and adopted by the Kane County Board of Commissioners on April 28, 2014.

Chapter 27 will be adopted as the Kane County Zoning of Public Lands within the Kane County portion of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM), and will be part of the Kane County General Plan and the Kane County Land Use Ordinance along with the zoning map.

Whenever there is a change to the Kane County Zoning Map, the planning commission shall provide notice and hold a public hearing on the proposed land use ordinance or zoning map amendment.

A Kane County Planning Commission Legislative Public Hearing was scheduled to be held on May 14, 2014, in accordance with the County Land Use, Development and Management Act and State Codes 17-27a-502, 17-27a-203 and 17-27a-205 in the preparation and adoption of a land use ordinance or zoning map.

Prior to the May 14 public hearing, public notices were printed in the local paper, Southern Utah News, and posted at the Kane County Courthouse.

The Kane County Land Use Authority mailed approximately1600 letters to interested persons (those who might be affected by the new zone). The letter stated “All interested persons may appear and will be given an opportunity to be heard either in support of or in opposition to the proposed inclusions to the Kane County Zoning Map.”

To accommodate the many “interested persons” of the public in attendance, the meeting was held in the district courtroom in the courthouse. Also present were County Commissioners Dirk Clayson, Douglas Heaton and James Matson, Deputy Kane County Attorney Kent Burggraaf and directors of various county departments.

Kane County Planning Administrator Shannon McBride explained more about the map establishing the Escalante Grazing Zone as a Multiple Uses/Multiple Functions Livestock Grazing Zone for public lands and the need to have the public informed. No opposition was presented.

The GSENM was created in September of 1996 by then President Bill Clinton, under Presidential Proclamation 6920. “Nothing in this proclamation shall be deemed to affect existing permits or leases for, or levels of, livestock grazing on Federal Lands within the monument.”

The new zone is to coincide with House Bill 382, 63J-8-101-106, suggested by Utah Representative Mike Noel at the state level.

The purpose of the new zone and map is to promote local, state and federal coordination to restore, repair, redevelop and develop livestock grazing resources, and maintain existing livestock grazing allotments under Utah State Code 17-27a-102. This zone is established to protect all valid private property rights and the continued use and full access to those rights. It also protects water rights and uses for ranchers and grazers.

The zone is intended to promote the health, safety, convenience, order, prosperity, general welfare and economy of the residents of Kane County, tourists and future generations.

There are permitted livestock and grazing allotments named within this new zone and are regulated by state code. The Bureau of Land Management grazing fees are set by a national formula and a variable market. They are rated by animal units (a cow and a calf). On April 9, the animal per unit fee was $1.35 per month.

Kane County asserts that the federal agencies that administer land within the Escalante Region Grazing Zone must fully coordinate with Kane County and the State of Utah to develop, amend, and implement land and resource management plans and implement management decisions that are consistent with the purposes, goals, policies and provisions described in Chapter 27, and to the Kane County Resource Management Plan and the Kane County General Plan to the maximum extent allowed under federal law.

This grazing zone is one of the few remaining areas in the world where livestock practices have maintained their traditional culture, values and heritage. Source: Kane County Ordinance No. 2014-6

The commissioners and the LUA staff have dedicated themselves to a coordinated land use planning which can hold the federal management agencies to standards set by Congress regarding continuation of multiple uses of federal lands.

Note: The members of the Planning Commission and the Resource Development Committee are dedicated and involved volunteers.

Other Agenda Items: Administrator McBride and Attorney Burggraaf explained the changes to the Kane County General Plan/Resource Management Plan and Chapter 21 Amending Subdivision Regulations.

There were two Rural Unimproved Subdivisions recommended to the commissioners for approval. Bryce View Estates: Seven 10-acre lots, North Rim of Zion and one in the Johnson Family Subdivision: Three parcels above the old movie set on Johnson Canyon Road.

For more information, Kane County’s website is kane.utah.gov.