MONTANA-Gallatin NF Hosting HPBH WSA Meeting

BRC just received an email from our partners over at Citizens for Balanced Use (CBU), with an announcement about the upcoming meeting regarding the Hyalite Porcupine Buffalo Horn Wilderness Study Area (WSA) that the Gallatin National Forest is holding next week. We’ve pasted USA-ALL’s email below. Please take a minute to read the alert, take action and then pass it along to friends, family and riding buddies. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact BRC.

BLUERIBBON COALITION PARTNER ALERT!

MONTANA – Gallatin NF Hosting HPBH WSA Meeting

Dear BRC Members and supporters in Montana,

BRC just received an email from our partners over at Citizens for Balanced Use (CBU), with an announcement about the upcoming meeting regarding the Hyalite Porcupine Buffalo Horn Wilderness Study Area (WSA) that the Gallatin National Forest is holding next week.

We’ve pasted USA-ALL’s email below. Please take a minute to read the alert, take action and then pass it along to friends, family and riding buddies.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact BRC.
Thanks in advance for your support,

Ric Foster
Public Lands Department Manager
BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 107


Citizens for Balanced Use
HPBH WSA MEETING

 

Dear Brian,

Please attend an important meeting on the
Hyalite Porcupine Buffalo Horn WSA.

Gallatin County Fairgrounds Building 1
Wednesday, February 29th, 5:30 P.M
.

      The 9th Circuit Court recently ruled the Forest Service was arbitrary and capricious in their management decision regarding the HPBH WSA area of the Gallatin National Forest. This decision puts the Forest Service back to square one in developing a management plan for this area.

The Forest Service ignored the historic use data which CBU submitted to them during the comment period on the Travel Planning action. CBU has asked Representative Rehberg for assistance in urging the Forest Service to consider our historic use data when they proceed with developing a new travel plan for the Hyalite Porcupine Buffalo Horn Wilderness Study Area. Proof of the uses which were present prior to 1977 in this area are important as the Wilderness Study Act requires that these prior uses “shall remain”.

CBU is continuing to gather historic use data for this area and we urge all our members and supporters to seek out and gather this information as the more information we have in the use of this area, the better. Send copies of this information including pictures, signed affadavites, etc to [email protected] or mail to CBU, Box 606, Gallatin Gateway, MT 59730

I have included below a copy of the invitation from the Forest Service for this meeting and also a copy of the letter from Representative Rehberg addressed to Forest Chief Tom Tidwell.

If you value continued access to the HPBH WSA, ATTEND THIS MEETING.

FS meeting invitation

The Gallatin National Forest invites you to join us for a community conversation about how you personally enjoy and value the Hyalite Porcupine Buffalo Horn Wilderness Study Area.  This conversation will help determine if there is energy behind and interest in developing a user generated collaborative process to help guide the future of recreation within the Wilderness Study Area.

Where:  Gallatin County Fairgrounds, Building #1
When:  Wednesday, February 29th from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
What to bring:  Your willingness to participate, listen and to respect different points of view
Who to contact for more information:  Marna Daley, (406) 587-6701
Alex Sienkiewicz, (406) 222-1892/(406) 932-5155 Lisa Stoeffler, (406) 522-2520

Thank you in advance for your time and interest.  We look forward to seeing you on February 29th.

Mariah Leuschen
Acting Public Affairs Specialist
Custer and Gallatin National Forests
[email protected]
O: 406-329-3095 C: 406-493-9657

Denny Rehberg’s letter to Tom Tidwell

January 11, 2012

Mr. Tom Tidwell
Chief, USDA Forest Service
1400 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20250


Dear Mr. Tidwell:

I’m writing on behalf of my constituents who have raised concerns regarding the Gallatin Forest Travel Plan.  As you know, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld a ruling that the Forest Service’s Gallatin National Forest Travel Plan did not comply with the Montana Wilderness Study Act of 1977.  It was the court’s opinion that the plan “improperly ignores the impact of increased volume of motorized and mechanized use on current users’ ability to seek quiet and solitude in the study area.”  When defending its decision to not include historical use data, the Forest Service claimed that it was a non factor because there wasn’t any historical use data available.
It is my understanding that during the comment period for the travel plan a substantial amount of historic use evidence including signed letters, pictures, a log sheet created by a FS employee, and an advertisement from the Forest Service to encourage people to come to the WSA to snowmobile.  For whatever reason it appears that none of this important evidence was used by your agency during the Draft Environmental Impact Statement.  Unfortunately, the courts have used this lack of evidence as their reasoning to uphold their latest ruling.
Since the travel plan has been held up by the courts, the Gallatin Forest has had to revert back to a backup winter use plan that is extremely restrictive to snowmobile use.  Meanwhile, the local economies around the forest are suffering due to the restrictions. Snowmobiles in the Gallatin National Forest alone bring in over 20 million dollars of economic activity every winter. This money turns over 13 times throughout this area in support of all the businesses. This activity and the money it generates are critical to the economic health of our area.

I urge you to draft another Travel Plan that includes all historical use data that is submitted during the comment period. We need a solution that works for the folks who live and work in and around the Gallatin National Forest.  Thank you for your consideration of this request, and please don’t hesitate to contact my office if I can be of further assistance.

Sincerely,

Denny Rehberg
Member of Congress

 

Kerry White
Citizens for Balanced Use
1-406-600-4CBU

 

 

 


The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible recreation, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. With members in all 50 states, BRC is focused on building enthusiast involvement with organizational efforts through membership, outreach, education, and collaboration among recreationists. 1-800-BlueRib – www.sharetrails.org
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As a non-profit, grassroots organization funded primarily by membership dues and donations, we greatly appreciate your support. Visit http://www.sharetrails.org/make-a-difference-now to help fund our efforts to protect your trails! 

Article source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/BlueRibbonCoalition/~3/8zkZKKvBPYw/montanagallatin-nf-hosting-hpbh-wsa-meeting

Posted by on Feb 23 2012. Filed under News and Information. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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