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Fate remains unclear for Owyhee Canyonlands designation

The designation of 2.5 million acres in southeast Oregon as a national monument continues to be pushed by conservationists and opposed by area interests. (Submitted photo)

By Pat Caldwell

The Enterprise

JORDAN VALLEY — The man in the White House will decide Rancher Elias Eiguren’s future on rangelands of Malheur County.

The fifth-generation cattleman can only wait to see whether President Obama bends to environmental interests to put 2.5 million acres of the Owyhee Canyonlands into a national monument.

The president has about six weeks – until Jan. 20 – to act. Meantime, there is no indication whether the new Trump administration would consider the matter if Obama didn’t act.

That’s a long waiting game for ranchers such as Eiguren.

“The reality is if it does come along it will . . .