IMPORTANT IDAHO LEGISLATIVE UPDATE-IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED

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February 10, 2012 6:57 PM

IMPORTANT LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED - EASY INSTRUCTIONS BELOW
We wanted to forward an important alert from Sandra Mitchell at the Idaho Recreation Council (IRC) and David Claiborne from the Idaho State ATV Association (ISATVA).
On Monday Representative Judy Boyle will introduce a bill to restrict Idaho's Department of Fish and Game (IDF&G) authority to limit motorized use of roads and trails on federally managed lands.
Efforts by Idaho's hunters and OHV users to convince the IDF&G to modify its "motorized rule" have been rebuffed. Indeed the a

IMPORTANT LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED - EASY INSTRUCTIONS BELOW

We wanted to forward an important alert from Sandra Mitchell at the Idaho Recreation Council (IRC) and David Claiborne from the Idaho State ATV Association (ISATVA).

On Monday Representative Judy Boyle will introduce a bill to restrict Idaho's Department of Fish and Game (IDF&G) authority to limit motorized use of roads and trails on federally managed lands.

Efforts by Idaho's hunters and OHV users to convince the IDF&G to modify its "motorized rule" have been rebuffed. Indeed the agency is now poised to extend the rule to predatory and unprotected species and is even proposing the regulation of camping activities!

Idaho's OHV organizations believe all of the various land mangers (e.g. state, private, USFS and BLM) must respect each other's jurisdiction. Just as the BLM must accept that local and state government has jurisdiction over some roads, the IDF&G must accept that the federal land managers have jurisdiction over trails.

Judy Boyle's legislation is a prudent first step in addressing IDF&G's policy for motorized recreation. I strongly urge you to send a quick and polite email to all of the addresses below.

Thanks in advance,
Brian Hawthorne
Public Lands Policy Director
BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 102


IDAHO STATE ATV ASSOCIATION AND RECREATION COUNCIL ALERT
IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUESTED - EASY INSTRUCTIONS BELOW

Idaho State ATV Association Idaho Recreation Council and BlueRibbon Coalition urge you to support legislation to establish that Idaho Fish & Game does not have authority to restrict, by rule, the use of trails on federal land that are designated as open by the federal land manager (e.g., BLM, USFS).

The Problem:
In approximately one-third of the management units in Idaho, Fish & Game has promulgated a rule limiting hunters from using OHVs on trails on federal lands. These trails are designated as open to OHV use by the federal land managers via an open, public process.  This rule has created tremendous confusion among the OHV and hunting community, fails to address conflicts between hunters on public lands, and has generated animosity between sportsmen and directed toward Fish & Game.  The rule is unfair and unwarranted because -

  • Fish & Game lacks authority to regulate travel on federal lands
  • The rule was initially created to prohibit off-trail travel - off-trail travel is now prohibited on all federal lands, so the rule is no longer needed; (except in rare instances like sand dunes)
  • The rule does not provide for a non-motorized experience because recreational use or hunters not after big game, are allowed to use the trails.
  • The rule undermines the NEPA planning process on federal lands that results in established travel plans and designated routes;
  • Because the rule does not apply to recreational trail users, enforcement of the rule is difficult, and often results in unnecessarily interference with innocent users' exercise of 2nd Amendment rights.

The Solution:
A legislative solution exists to correct this problem that Fish & Game refuses to correct on its own.  The proposed legislation would, quite simply, provide that Fish & Game has no authority to restrict the use of motor vehicles, such as OHVs, on federal lands.  Existing restrictions related to shooting from OHVs, or chasing animals with OHVs, would remain in effect.  Travel designations and restrictions on federal land should only be made by the federal land manager.  Recreationists fought long and hard to keep these roads open year around!

How you can help:
Passing legislation is a long and sometimes convoluted process. We are at the beginning, and possibly the most important, part of the process.

The first step in this rather long process is getting the committee support. You can contact them today with a brief and polite email in support of Representative Judy Boyle's legislation that "specifically prohibits the commission and/or department from restricting the use of motorized vehicles on trails and roads which are otherwise open to motorized vehicle use on federal lands." If you are a constituent of the representative, make sure you let them know.

Also (apologies for the short notice) the bill will be formally introduced in the Resources and Conservation Committee this Monday, February 13 at 1:30 p.m. in room EW40. If you can attend, please consider showing your support.

Naturally, we'll be asking for your support as the process moves along, so stay tuned!

jawood@house.idaho.gov                          JoAn Wood
Lbarrett@house.idaho.gov                         Lenore Barrett
geskridge@house.idaho.gov                      George Eskridge
draybould@house.idaho.gov                     Dell Raybould
Sbedke@house.idaho.gov                          Scott Bedke
kandrus@house.idaho.gov                         Ken Andrus
fwood@house.idaho.gov                            Fred Wood
mhagedorn@house.idaho.gov                  Marv Hagedorn
dharwood@house.idaho.gov                     Dick Harwood
jvanderwoude@house.idaho.gov            John Vander woude
mgibbs@house.idaho.gov                           Marc Gibbs
dpence@house.idaho.gov                          Donna Pence
ehiggins@house.idaho.gov                         Elfreda Higgins
rlacey@house.idaho.gov                              Roy Lacey
pshepherd@house.idaho.gov                   Paul Shepherd
jstevenson@house.idaho.gov                   John Stevenson

I support Representative Judy Boyle's legislation that "specifically prohibits the commission and/or department from restricting the use of motorized vehicles on trails and roads which are otherwise open to motorized vehicle use on federal lands. 


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!

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