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Meeting to Take Place on Boulder-White Clouds Becoming National Monument
Hailey, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV )
A movement is taking place to make Boulder–White Clouds a national monument.
Blaine County is in support of the measure, but Custer County is in opposition.
On Wednesday a meeting is set to take place between the two counties to discuss their differing opinions.
Blaine County Commissioner Larry Schoen notes, "The chance for both communities to get together and the chance to hear what others think is a chance to hear new viewpoints and get a different perspective.”
Now as proposed the national monument would span both counties and encompass nearly 600–thousand acres in total.
Says Schoen, "Many people feel that the area deserves a higher level of protection. In some ways the national monument designation offers more management flexibility and maybe this is the right solution."
A study by the Idaho Business Council estimates designating the area a national monument could bring in up to 12.3 million dollars each year.
But with more money comes more people flocking to the area.
Ketchum City Council President David Michael explains, "one of the main sources for our economy is tourism so how that affects that is definitely something we'll take into consideration."
Schoen adds, "Business owners in the Stanley area who rely on tourism are split. Some like the idea it would bring in more business but also love what they have and are concerned what would change."
But regardless of decisions that are made, the importance of the meeting is acknowledged.
Schoen notes, "this is not just an issue of local issue, but also of regional and national significance."
Typically, a national monument is designated by presidential proclamation.
The first step in a long process.
The meeting will take place at 6 in the evening on Wednesday at the Dollar Mountain Lodge. The public is encouraged to attend.