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Ask Joe: Did Amodei support transferring public land to tribal group?

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From the Ask Joe file, we're following up on a recent question about the transfer of a popular recreation area from the federal government to the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony.

Mike Marcum wrote in asking if Nevada's congressional delegation supported transferring that land out of the federal government's hands.

Here's what I found out:

We're talking about 13,000 acres of land behind Spanish Springs High School in Hungry Valley, which had been considered open space until a law was passed last year by Congress and signed by President Obama.

The law cleared the way for the land to be transferred to the Indian Colony, which has already taken steps to restrict access to the area.

I checked with Rep. Mark Amodei's office to find out if he realized access to the land would be restricted after it was in the hands of the Indian Colony.

It turns out Amodei actually introduced the legislation to transfer that land out of the hands of the Bureau of Land Management. I tried for several days but I could not get a comment or a statement from Amodei about this situation.

Instead, his spokesperson Logan Ramsey sent me some background information on why the law was passed, and a lot of it has to do with the fact that the BLM does not have the resources to patrol and protect that area like the tribal group does.

A lot of people are upset that they have lost access to that area, and our viewer Mike is one of them. But the flip slide is so many of these open areas are becoming places for people to illegally dump their trash. The growing number of target shooters has also made some people feel unsafe using those lands.

As it stands now, target shooting is no longer allowed, alcohol is prohibited and off-road vehicles are only allowed on a designated path. Even if you want to walk or hike out there, you will need a permit to do so.

I checked with the Reno-Sparks Indian Colony spokesperson Stacey Montooth, who told me they are not quite ready to release information about when and where to get permits. They hope to release that information soon.

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