Montana is an outdoor state. We hunt. We fish. We take our kids hiking. And public lands provide a great place to enjoy our wonderful state, which is why I have continually fought to increase access to these beautiful places.

Currently, the Forest Service is working on a facility site master plan, which is a comprehensive look at our nation's recreation facilities and campsites. Due to a tight budget, the Forest Service is considering closing certain campsites in order to save money. While I understand having budget constraints, closing access to public lands is something that we Montanans take very seriously, as it not only effects our outdoor recreation but also our economy.

That is why I am strongly urging the Forest Service to hold public meetings at each of Montana's nine national forests so the local folks who use these sites have a say in how they are managed. By working together, we can come up with a common sense plan that ensures maximum access to well-maintained, affordable recreation sites.

As Montanans, our public lands are part of our outdoor heritage, and I will do everything in my power to make sure our outdoor heritage is protected. Over the years different proposals have cropped up that have threatened our public lands, and every time I have fought these heinous proposals tooth and nail. Whether it is selling off public lands to pay for other programs, or limiting access to current public lands, these proposals have always, and will always, find a steadfast opponent in me.