The Trump administration plans to move the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management from its current home in Washington to a city in the western state of Colorado, one of the state’s U.S. senators said Monday.
Sen. Cory Gardner released a statement saying the new headquarters would be located in Grand Junction, Colorado, and praised the move as a “victory for local communities, advocates for public lands and proponents for a more responsible and accountable federal government.”
“The problem with Washington is too many policymakers are far removed from the people they are there to serve,” Gardner said.
The Bureau of Land Management is part of the U.S. Interior Department and has about 9,000 employees. Currently about 400 of those employees work in Washington, and it is not clear how many would be shifted to the new headquarters.
The bureau oversees 1 billion square kilometers of public land, of which 99% is located in 12 western states.
Critics of moving the headquarters argue it will make officials less able to work with other federal agencies and members of Congress, and that part of the administration’s motivation is to shrink the number of federal workers through attrition when some people choose not to move to keep their job.