Montana Standard 12/9/2013
Excerpt: “MISSOULA — One thing’s certain about the draft management plans for the Kootenai and Idaho Panhandle national forests — they’ve got lots of kinks to work out.
By last week’s deadline, 60 people or organizations had filed hundreds of pages of objections to the draft plans. The two national forests, on the northwestern Montana-northern Idaho border, are the first in the nation to develop new long-term management plans. ……”
Read entire article at http://mtstandard.com/news/local/state-and-regional/forest-plans-draw-protests/article_98ef5d38-609c-11e3-aad3-001a4bcf887a.html
Albuquerque Journal 12/9/2013
Excerpt: “Leave it to the Cibola National Forest’s Sandia Ranger District to once again emulate a blast of winter and dump on any fun. After all, this is the same group of bureaucrats that last spring revamped a system of hiking trail helpers to require timesheets and reports. Predictably, the volunteer ranks dropped from 93 to zero – which of course was the intent. Make a program so cumbersome it’s hard to justify keeping it.
So is it any surprise the ranger district opted this winter to continue to keep the Capulin Snow Play Area near Sandia Peak closed – an area taxpayers have plowed more than half a million bucks into – because nobody stepped up to micromanage kids on sleds and innertubes?” …..
Read entire article at http://www.abqjournal.com/316505/opinion/forest-grinches-swipe-snow-play-from-public.html
Los Angeles Daily News 12/7/2013
Excerpt: “Facing increasing legal pressures, the U.S. Forest Service plans to eliminate the $5-a-day Adventure Pass fee from 160,000 acres in the Angeles National Forest, including popular day-use areas in San Gabriel Canyon and Mount Baldy.
The Forest Service’s proposed shrinking fee program will allow millions of Southern Californians to enter the forest without paying the $5 day pass or carry the $30 yearly pass. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.dailynews.com/lifestyle/20131207/forest-service-scales-back-adventure-pass
Tahoe Daily Tribune 12/2/2013
Excerpt: “A consortium of off-highway vehicle users recently lost a federal lawsuit that sought to overturn a Tahoe National Forest plan that limits off-road use in the forest.
On Nov. 22, Judge John A. Mendez of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California delivered a lengthy oral ruling, siding with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the forest service, and denying Friends of Tahoe Forest Access in its attempt to preserve and expand access for off-highway vehicles. …”
Read entire article at http://www.tahoedailytribune.com/news/9176587-113/forest-tahoe-access-national
Vail Daily 12/2/2013
Excerpt: “EAGLE COUNTY — A coalition of eight conservation groups is fighting to prevent ski areas from adding roller-coaster-like rides for summer business and from restricting access for winter uphill skiers and snowshoers.
The coalition filed comments with the U.S. Forest Service on Nov. 25 on a proposed national directive by the agency that will set the rules for summer activities and clarify that a fee can be charged for uphillers. Rocky Smith, a longtime forest-policy analyst for conservation groups in Colorado, said the potential for the “coaster” rides was the most alarming part of the directive for the group. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.vaildaily.com/news/9176325-113/ski-forest-areas-coalition
USDA FS News Release 11/20/2013
Excerpt: “WASHINGTON, Nov. 20, 2013 – The U.S. Forest Service now offers access to variety of visitor maps for people using Android and iOS devices.
“This mobile app makes it easier than ever to plan your visit to a national forest or grassland,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “By putting important forest information right at your fingertips, it will encourage more Americans to get outside and explore their forests.” …”
Read entire news release at http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentid=2013/11/0221.xml&contentidonly=true
Albuquerque Journal Guest Editorial 11/18/2013
Excerpt: “The recent decision by the U.S. Forest Service to ban motorized vehicles on 100,000 acres in the Carson National Forest (mostly in Taos County) is going to hurt tens of thousands of Hispanic families in northern New Mexico who rely on cutting their firewood each winter in these same lands to keep their families warm during the cold winters.
This Forest Service ban will effectively put all this land off-limits to the Hispanic families and communities of northern New Mexico starting immediately and will make it very difficult – if not impossible – for Hispanic families to cut their firewood for next winter and all future winters, unless this decision is reversed soon…..”
Read entire guest opinion at http://www.abqjournal.com/302908/opinion/government-should-return-forest-lands-to-hispanics.html
Glenwood Springs Post Independent 11/13/2013
Excerpt: “WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Mark Udall of Colorado said Wednesday that he welcomed the U.S. Forest Service’s stated intention to not pursue the transfer of water rights from ski areas in exchange for permits to use public lands.
Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell issued the statement to the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee as a result of a compromise that Udall helped to broker…..”
Read entire article at http://www.postindependent.com/news/8898121-113/forest-service-colorado-bill
Tucson Sentinel; 11/16/2013
Excerpt: “PHOENIX – Arizona officials are slamming the U.S. Forest Service over a regulation making trailers subject to impoundment or citation if left unattended for more than 72 hours in northern Arizona national forests.
Calling the move unprecedented, the Arizona Game and Fish Commission and Department contend that the regulation hurts hunters, anglers and other recreational users. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.tucsonsentinel.com/local/report/111613_fs_regs_unfair/az-officials-forest-service-regulation-trailers-unfair-hunters/
Summit County Voice 11/16/2013
Excerpt: “FRISCO — By the latest conservative estimate, at least 600,000 bats were killed by energy producing wind turbines in 2012, with the highest fatality rates in areas near the Appalachian Mountains.
Little information is available on bat deaths at wind turbine facilities in the Rocky Mountain West or the Sierra Nevada, according to Mark Hayes, a University of Colorado, Boulder researcher who authored a new study, set to be published in the journal BioScience. …..”
Read entire article at http://summitcountyvoice.com/2013/11/16/new-study-ups-estimate-of-wind-turbine-bat-deaths/