Seattle Post 5/20/2013
Excerpt: “The Green Mountain Lookout should be let stand in its present perch, atop a popular Snohomish County hiking trail, and not be moved or removed, according to a tough-worded letter sent to the U.S. Forest Service by Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and U.S. Reps. Rick Larsen and Suzan DelBene, D-Wash.
“We strongly oppose the removal of the Green Mountain Lookout from its historic home,” lawmakers told the federal agency. “Smokey Bear” is struggling with what to do after a federal judge’s ruling that the federal agency acted improperly in rebuilding the 1933-vintage fire lookout. The lookout, located within the Glacier Peak Wilderness Area, has become a battleground that pits an extreme green group from out-of-state against local recreation activists, historic preservationists, county officials and lawmakers. …”
Read entire article at http://blog.seattlepi.com/seattlepolitics/2013/05/20/smokey-spare-that-lookout-washington-lawmakers-to-forest-service/
Seattle Post Intelligencer 5/8/2013
Excerpt: “A judge has told the U.S. Forest Service to pay $70,804.19 in legal fees to two lawyers who helped win a lawsuit that will force removal of the historic, rebuilt Green Mountain Lookout from the summit of a popular hiking trail in Washington’s Glacier Peak Wilderness Area.
Senior U.S. District Judge John Coughenour approved compensating attorney Peter M.K. Frost of Oregon at rates of $410 an hour for work done in 2010, rising to $425 an hour for work done on the suit in 2011 and 2012. Junior counsel John R. Mellgren, also of Oregon, was ordered to be compensated at a lower rate of $184.32 an hour. Both Frost and Mellgren work for the Western Environmental Law Center, which frequently sues the Forest Service. …”
Read entire article at http://blog.seattlepi.com/seattlepolitics/2013/05/08/u-s-judge-awards-70804-to-anti-lookout-lawyers/
JD Supra Law News 5/2/2013
Excerpt: “On April 25, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit invalidated a consent decree that plaintiffs and three federal agency defendants asserted resolved a dispute spanning more than a decade. See Conservation Nw. v. Sherman, No. 11-35729 (9th Cir. 2013) (pdf). In doing so, the Ninth Circuit held that the district court abused its discretion when it entered the consent decree because it bypassed statutorily mandated public-participation procedures.
The Northwest Forest Plan applies to approximately 24.5 million acres of federal land spanning from San Francisco to the Canadian border. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/ninth-circuit-invalidates-consent-decree-85062/
Spokane Spokesman Review 4/2/2013
Excerpt: “Didn’t think the brainless budget sequester Congress foisted upon itself could get any dumber? Read on.
The U.S. Department of Interior is asking states to pay back millions of dollars already allocated to rural counties for schools, roads and other services. Plus, it plans to subject funding to the across-the-board cuts called for under sequestration. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2013/apr/02/editorial-rural-roads-and-schools-need-more/
Excerpt: “CENTRALIA — U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, on Wednesday told community leaders she remains committed to open forest roads and preserving public access to the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. At a community roundtable at the Lewis County Courthouse, Herrera Beutler solicited input from about 25 stakeholders regarding the management of federal forest roads and overall forest health.
The Forest Service must figure out how — with a downsized budget — to reduce the number of roads and trails in Gifford Pinchot from about 4,000 miles to about 1,000 miles by the year 2015……”
Read entire article at http://www.columbian.com/news/2013/mar/28/1ce-herrera-beutler-addresses-gifford-pinchot-road/
Washington Post 3/14/2013
Excerpt: “BILLINGS, Mont. — Thirteen years after the government listed Canada lynx as a threatened species, wildlife advocates on Thursday asked a federal judge to force the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to finish its long-awaited recovery plan for the snow-loving wild cats.
Four groups represented by the Western Environmental Law Center allege the long delay on the part of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service violates federal law. …”
Read entire article at http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/energy-environment/delay-in-recovery-plan-for-imperiled-canada-lynx-recovery-plan-spurs-federal-lawsuit/2013/03/14/692d1232-8cfa-11e2-adca-74ab31da3399_story.html
Excerpt: “LA GRANDE — Trucks gathering logs for the Boise Cascade sawmill here roll out at 2 a.m. to begin their daylong, 480-mile round trips to the Mount Hood National Forest, Washington’s Okanogan National Forest and other federal woodlands in Idaho.
“It is crazy to have to go that far for logs, totally,” said Jim Princehouse of La Grande, who owns a fleet of 11 log trucks. “This is a hard life,” said Princehouse, 67. “It really is.” ….”
Read entire article at http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2013/03/blue_mountain_timber_top_fores.html
Yakima Herald 3/12/2013
Excerpt: “The future health and resilience of Washington’s forests may be that rare topic that finds willing supporters and budget dollars even in times of tight budgets. It’s certainly on everybody’s agenda these days. Last Tuesday, Gov. Jay Inslee was pitching his climate change bill before the House Environment Committee. On Friday, the House Capital Budget Committee met with state agency representatives in a work session on the impacts of climate change. Next Tuesday, the Senate Natural Resources will hear testimony on why prescribed burning is part of the solution for the long-term health of state forests.
And now the Department of Natural Resources is aligning itself with nongovernmental conservation organizations — including prescribed-burning advocates — in seeking $15 million in “forest health” funding for Eastern Washington forests over the next two years. …”
Read entire article at http://www.yakimaherald.com/news/yhr/tuesday/928853-8/state-forest-health-resilience-top-many-agendas#print
Tacoma News Tribune 1/31/2013
Excerpt: “SPOKANE, Wash. — Environmental groups will sue the federal government over its decision to cut more than 90 percent of the land originally proposed as critical habitat for the last mountain caribou herd in the Lower 48 states.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service last November announced that it was slashing the habitat proposed in Idaho and Washington from 375,000 acres to about 30,000 acres. ……”
Read entire article at http://www.thenewstribune.com/2013/01/31/2456775/enviro-groups-to-sue-over-caribou.html
Excerpt: “Last week, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Dave Reichert (R-WA) reintroduced legislation called the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Additions and Pratt and Middle Fork Snoqualmie Rivers Protection Act.
This legislation would expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness and designate both the Pratt and Middle Fork Snoqualmie Rivers as Wild and Scenic. The Alpine Lakes Wilderness is a massive area stretching across 390,000 acres along the Cascade Mountain Range and includes such scenic gems as the Wenatchee National Forest and Snoqualmie National Forest. …..”
Read entire article at http://www.examiner.com/article/protecting-washington-s-alpine-lakes-wilderness-draws-bipartisan-effort