State Forestry to Implement More Closures to State-Owned Lands
Phoenix, AZ (5/22/18) - To ensure public safety, protect property and our resources, the Department of Forestry and Fire Management will implement more closures on state-owned and managed lands in both Coconino and Gila counties.
Beginning at 8 am on Wednesday, May 23rd, Coconino County, south of the Grand Canyon, and Gila County will close to entry for recreational purposes. That includes: hunting, camping, and off-road vehicle usage. As a reminder, target shooting and fireworks are never allowed on state lands at any time.
“Closures are not something we ever want to do or that we take lightly. But, unfortunately, the time comes when we must look at that option, have discussions, and make the decision based on what’s best to assure the safety of our residents and our firefighters,” said State Forester Jeff Whitney.
Closures apply to the following state-owned and state-managed lands within the above-mentioned counties including:
- All State Trust lands outside incorporated municipalities.
- All Game and Fish Commission Wildlife areas and department properties outside incorporated municipalities will remain open, under Stage II Fire Restrictions.
- Arizona State Parks will remain open with fire restrictions in place. Please refer to https://azstateparks.com/arizona-state-park-fire-restrictions-and-info - for park-specific fire restriction information.
- Full shutdown of all operations; except organizations on mineral soil involving road excavation, watering, grading, gravel surfacing, and rock crushing may continue with special permission. Contractor will provide fire guard for three hours after shutdown.
- Persons with a written fire entry and activity permit that specifically authorizes the permitted to be on the land. This may include such persons as grazing-permit holders when entry is needed to gather, move, or otherwise manage their permitted livestock, special-use authorization holders when access is needed to maintain emergency or other communications operations, and others.
- Any federal, state, or local law enforcement officer, or member of an organized rescue or firefighting organization in the performance of an official duty.
- Resident owners and lessees of land within the closed area. Any closure exemption must be approved by the State Forester. These closures do not apply to private lands under ARS § 37-1303.
Media outlets should contact Tiffany Davila at 602-540-1036 or by email at [email protected] for more information.
All other inquiries should be directed to Adriana Harrington at 602-999-5599 or email her at [email protected] for additional information.