BREAKING NEWS - Quartzsite Mayor Ed Foster reported that the BLM Long - term visitor area has been closed because of the federal government shut down. It has been confirmed that camp host volunteers have been asked to turn over their keys, rangers have been issued pink slips and no new permits will be issued at this time. Incoming campers are being directed to 14 day areas. See pg 7 of the current issue for that list. Unofficially, campers who have purchased a winter permit may stay put as there are no rangers left to remove the public from public lands. A letter posted on the door of camp host offices does state that "visitors should vacate...", however it does not say they must.
Foster had asked
Town Manager Bruno to contact BLM last week, but he is unaware of any
negotiations between the Town and the BLM at this time. La Posa North and La Posa West are within Town limits. Quartzsite Police are not authorized to respond to calls for service on BLM unless requested by BLM to assist, and the notice clearly states that, "emergency services will not be available", so camp at your own risk. The Contingency Plan Fact Sheet states that Law Enforcement and Emergency Response will "remain operational." but it does not specifically refer to any particular area as it relates to the BLM in a broad sense, and on a national level. The Facebook page for BLM Arizona directs you to the Department of the Interior web site, and the Yuma Field Office has a phone message that states they are closed.
This post will be updated as events unfold.