Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon issued an executive order Wednesday that improves the state's Greater Sage-Grouse Core Area Protection Strategy, according to a news release.

The new order streamlines greater sage-grouse conservation, improves its clarity, recognizes valid and existing rights, and continues to provide regulatory certainty while allowing for adaptation as new information emerges.

It reflects many of the public comments collected earlier this year, and incorporates substantial recommendations prepared for the governor by the Sage-Grouse Implementation Team.

"This Executive Order shows how this administration has embraced a proven strategy that is the framework for how Wyoming approaches conservation," Gordon said in the news release.

"It is impressive that such a wide array of interests understand the importance of this issue to Wyoming’s economy and our ecology and were willing to work together to build the strong foundation of this strategy," he said. "I want to thank the SGIT for their time, passion and commitment in developing recommended changes, the vast majority of which I have accepted and integrated into EO 2019-3.”

The new executive order replaces two orders issued by former Gov. Matt Mead.

It is comprised of nine appendices and is formatted to allow for amendments to any appendix without requiring amending the full document. New guidance in the appendices provides directives for coordination and agency cooperation, data collection and reporting, and adaptive management.

Technical directives remain unchanged, including habitat maps and definitions, stipulations for development, and compensatory mitigation requirements. It also retains recognition of valid existing rights and minimum activities.

The full text of Executive Order 2019-3 and its appendices are posted to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s Greater sage-grouse Executive Order information page.

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