Guess what? Taxpayers are losing access to public recreational lands!
Please sign this petition to help save our right to access what we
already have! AND PLEASE, SHARE THIS WITH EVERYONE YOU RIDES/WHEELS/CAMPS on public land! Never assume everyone who WOULD sign receives word that there is
a current need for attention.
See link below:
Our best offense against the sweeping Wilderness proposals is a good
defense. You can do your part by signing the petition to preserve
Multiple Use Lands at:
April 21, 2007
Dear members of our multiple recreational use community, Families For
Outdoor Recreation, Citizens For Balanced Use, Blue Ribbon Coalition,
American Recreation Coalition, Good Sam Club, Kampgrounds of America,
and interested media;
This morning I read the following article in the newspaper. I ask for
all of you to read and consider the implications for our American way
of life. Consider what it means to our families today and in 5, 10,
and 20 years.
Unfortunately, if we do not come together and lobby the right
individuals and focus our efforts at a national level we are going to
lose access to the very lands we all love.
I hope this letter will generate more conversation within and between
our groups and improve our cooperative/ organized efforts in achieving
the common goal of forever protecting access for all people, not just
those fit enough to hike, and help introduce some common sense back
into this process.
Families for Outdoor Recreation ffor.org
Lawmakers propose sweeping Western wilderness area
Bill, originated by Eastern legislators, draws scorn of Rehberg, Cubin
By NOELLE STRAUB
Gazette Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Two East Coast lawmakers introduced a bill Friday with 73
co-sponsors that would designate as wilderness 23 million public acres
in five Northern Rocky Mountain states, including Montana and Wyoming .
Reps. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., and Christopher Shays, R-Conn., wrote
the Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act. It would give the
government's strongest protections to areas of Montana , Wyoming ,
Idaho , Washington and Oregon . They announced the measure along with
singer and songwriter Carole King. Three co-sponsors are from
Washington and three from Oregon . Both Montana and Wyoming 's
representatives condemned the bill and vowed to fight it.
Similar measures have been introduced in several previous Congresses.
But this time, the chairmen of the House Natural Resources Committee
and the relevant subcommittee have both signed on as sponsors of the
bill. A panel spokeswoman said the committee is reviewing the
legislation now and may hold hearings on it, although there are no
immediate plans for one.
The bill would designate as wilderness all 20 million acres of
inventoried roadless lands in the states and another 3 million acres
in Glacier, Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. It includes 7
million acres in Montana and 5 million acres in Wyoming .
A wilderness designation generally prohibits timber harvesting and
permanent roads, structures and facilities. Hunting, fishing and other
recreational activities generally are allowed.
Maloney and Shays said the bill would protect some of the country's
most beautiful and ecologically important lands. They said it would
save taxpayers $245 million over 10 years by managing the land as
wilderness and eliminating "subsidized development" there. They said
more than 2,300 jobs would be created through the bill's program to
rip out old logging roads and restore the areas to their natural state.
"NREPA has always been ahead of its time by drawing wilderness
boundaries according to science, not politics," Maloney said in a
prepared statement. "NREPA would also help mitigate the effects of
global warming by protecting the corridors through which vulnerable
wildlife can migrate to cooler areas."
Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., said all legislation on public lands must
take into consideration the opinions of local communities and people
who depend on the resources for work and recreation. "I oppose this
legislation because it's a top-down approach that doesn't properly
take into account the impacts on the local economy nor does it
adequately protect access for hunting, fishing and other forms of
recreation," Rehberg said in a prepared statement. "I'll continue to
work to implement responsible policies to protect Montana 's natural
Rep. Barbara Cubin, R-Wyo., called the bill a "147-page assault on our
Western way of life" and said local input and control would be
slipping away. "This is an absolutely offensive attempt by East
Coast liberals to create sweeping, over-reaching laws for Western
public lands without any public input from the folks living in Wyoming
who would be heavily impacted by this legislation, " Cubin said in a
prepared statement. "I have always supported a carefully balanced
multiple-use policy when it comes to public lands, and this bill would
essentially do away with that type of sensible evaluation."
Cubin said the wilderness designation on Wyoming public lands could
lead to "tremendously negative impacts" on local economies.
"Legislation this bad does not warrant committee attention, but if
that happens, Wyoming citizens need to know that I will be fighting
this bill tooth and nail," she said.
In the Greater Glacier/Northern Continental Divide ecosystem, the core
of which is Glacier National Park and the Bob Marshall Wilderness, the
bill would place about 2.2 million acres under wilderness designation.
In the greater Yellowstone region, about 6.5 million acres would be
About 2.7 million acres of mountain ranges separated by prairies,
including the Bighorn, Big Snowy, Pryor, Elkhorn and Caribou
mountains, would become wilderness.
About 129,000 acres within the Lewis and Clark National Forest and
known as the Badger-Two Medicine Area would be designated the
About 6.2 million acres in the Greater Salmon/Selway region, about 1.1
million acres in the Greater Cabinet/ Yaak/Selkirk ecosystem, and
about 525,000 acres in the Greater Hells Canyon ecosystem would become
About 8.5 million acres would be designated as biological connecting
corridors in the Bitterroot, Sapphire, Lost River , Lemhi and Bridger
mountain ranges. Another 1 million acres would be wildland recovery
areas, meaning work would be done to return the areas to their natural
state after development activities.
Hundreds of miles of rivers and creeks in Montana , Wyoming and Idaho
would receive the designation of wild and scenic rivers.