As temperatures cool, we wanted to give you an important wildlands update. Attorneys for Resource Conservation Company International (General Electric) recently filed a Petition to Reconsider with Federal Judge B. Lynn Winmill. In other words, the corporation has asked the court to reconsider its ruling for US 12 Omega Morgan megaloads. The Forest Service has also filed a petition, which is greatly disappointing and troublesome. If Judge Winmill were to deny the petition, it appears the defendants may appeal the decision to the U.S. Ninth Circuit of Appeals.
Idaho Senator Jim Risch has announced that he is entertaining the possibility of introducing legislation for the Upper Lochsa Land Exchange. This despite the fact, that after seven years, there is very little public support for an exchange, of any kind. Meanwhile, the Forest Service expects to complete an appraisal by the end of the year for lands that could be included in an administrative exchange. Following the appraisal, a Record of Decision (ROD) would be issued, along with the Final Environmental Impact Statement. Staff for Risch has indicated that legislation could be introduced prior to ROD.
Idaho Representative Raul Labrador is co-sponsoring legislation that would mandate logging on the national forests–it would increase logging levels 5-10x on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests. The dishonestly named, Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act, H.R. 1526 would, 1) mandate the creation of Forest Reserve Revenue Areas 2) mandate the level of timber harvest for each area 3) directs the federal government to transfer management authority of 2-million acres of public lands to local community advisory committees. The House recently passed the bill and now it is headed to the Senate–that is if the federal government ever reopens. The Obama Administration has already indicated that they would veto such a bill, if necessary. Learn more.
During the month of October, FOC is sponsoring three events, which will offer analysis of wilderness and the Clearwater Basin Collaborative 2013 Agreement & Work Plan. On Tuesday October 8, there will be a community potluck at 426 E. Lewis Street, Moscow from 5-8pm. On Tuesday October 22, please attend Wilderness & Collaboration Collide at the UI Law School, Room 105 from 7-9pm. On Tuesday October 29, we will have a coffee-chat session at Cafe Artista in downtown Moscow from 8-9am. Read our preliminary analysis. Our full analysis will be available soon.
Lastly, we would like to thank the Moscow Food Co-Op for selecting us as the Dime in Time recipient for the month of September. A huge thank you to all of those that donated money to FOC programming, too. The money is going towards a brand new outreach banner!