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Nye Co. Commissioner Critical Of Basin And Range Designation


President Obama designated thousands of acres of Nevada's Basin and Range as a national monument but not everyone agrees with the decision.

The designation of 700,000 acres in Lincoln and Nye counties is not sitting well with at least with one Nye County commissioner.

President Barack Obama recently announced the creation of the Basin and Range National Monument in central Nevada. The land will be preserved as a national monument under the Antiquities Act.

That designation stops economic activities such as mining and solar energy.

However, Nye County Commissioner Frank Carbone says the designation comes with a financial cost. 

Normally, counties get what are known as PILT money, which stands for payment in lieu of taxes, and usually it is 33 cents an acre.

If Nye County doesn't get PILT for the acreage that is now a monument, it could cost the county about $99,000 a year.

Carbone told KNPR's State of Nevada that it will be difficult to replace those funds. 

"We don't like raising taxes within the county," he said. "We try to keep it as low as we can because we have a very senior population."

At this point, Carbone doesn't see any potential benefit for having the basin and range designated a national monument.

"I don't really know what the benefit is," he said. "We won't really know until we see who goes and visits this particular monument."

The commissioner said that people living near the area don't get many visitors now and he doesn't see that it will change. 

 He also not sure how much the government will spend on facilities for the area like visitor centers and bathrooms.

"I betcha it's going to spend a lot of money, and it won't be money that helps us here in the county that's for sure," he said. "I'm not to sure what the reasoning was behind it."

Frank Carbone, commissioner, Nye County Commission

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