Zinke: U.S. Geological Survey May Also Move Out West

Nathaniel Minor/CPR News
Grand Junction, Colorado, seen from the Colorado National Monument.
Photo: Grand Junction Student 2 | Wide Shot Grand Junction
Grand Junction, Colorado, seen from the Colorado National Monument. The city is widely considered a contender for the new home of the Bureau of Land Management.

The Bureau of Land Management isn’t the only Washington, D.C. agency U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wants to move out West.

During his visit to Rocky Mountain National Park on Sunday, Zinke said he could possibly bring the U.S. Geological Survey to the region too -- and Colorado is among the states in the running as a possible host site. And he made special mention of research facilities at Colorado School of Mines in Golden and Colorado State University in Fort Collins as possible sites, the Colorado Springs Gazette reported.

Zinke has big goals to reorganize Interior. The Denver metro is the federal government's Western hub, but the high cost of living has encouraged officials to want to push headquarters along the Western Slope.

Grand Junction has good schools, a high quality of life and an affordable cost of living, Zinke said during his visit. About 8 million acres the BLM controls is in Colorado and almost all of the land is in Western states, thousands of miles away from Washington.

Potential BLM headquarter locations are expected to be compiled within the next few months.