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US Rep. Zinke: It's time to take a stand on public lands

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HELENA (AP) — U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke told state lawmakers that while Montana's public lands are sacred, federal mismanagement is such that it's time to take a stand.

The Republican from Whitefish spoke to a joint session of the Montana House and Senate Friday, saying he plans introduce a bill this session to study land management at the local, state and federal levels.

He says he won't tolerate selling the state's public lands, but multiple uses from recreation to mining are part of Montana's heritage.

Zinke also pointed to Montana's spotty cellphone coverage and lackluster broadband Internet as reasons infrastructure investment is needed in the state.

He ended his speech by urging legislators to work together, telling them it's not enough to reject ideas without presenting better solutions.

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