- Associated Press - Monday, November 15, 2010

WHITE HOUSE

Obama to convene with tribal leaders

President Obama will play host to American Indian leaders at a White House conference on Dec. 16.

The president has invited the leaders of each of the 565 federally recognized tribes to the event, the White House announced Monday. It would be Mr. Obama’s second conference with American Indians. Mr. Obama first met with tribal leaders last November.

The president says he wants tribal leaders to be able to interact with him and with top administration officials.

Last year’s event drew leaders from 386 tribal nations and was the first meeting of its kind in 15 years.

INTERIOR

Salazar orders land conservation

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is ordering federal land managers to consider conservation as the primary focus of some 27 million acres of public lands in the West.

Environmental groups had been seeking the secretarial order to further protect the conservation lands, including Nevada’s Red Rock Canyon. The order was signed Monday.

Mr. Salazar’s order clarifies that the Bureau of Land Management should treat conservation as a top priority in managing the 27-million-acre National Landscape Conservation System. The bureau also promotes grazing, energy development and tourism.

The Clinton administration created the system in 2000 to protect and restore nationally significant landscapes, mostly in the West. Congress formally approved the landscape system last year.

VIRGINIA

Candidates sought for vacancies

Virginia Republicans have begun their search for a successor to U.S. Rep.-elect Robert Hurt in the state Senate, the Roanoke Times reported.

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