By Lois Krafsky-Perry
Citizen Review Tuesday October 20, 2015
Sequim, WA – Gil Goodman, who is running again for Clallam County Parks and Recreation District #1, challenged fellow members to follow the law.
At the September 25, Board meeting, for Sequim Aquatic Recreation Center, Goodman stated that some members have been, ‘polling’.
“For the past ten months, since before the run up, for the first levy action, I noticed certain board members pushing their agenda, by cornering other board member, comparing questions on a one-on-one basis, then going to the next board member and so-forth. This serial one on one effectively behind closed doors makes board decision time a formality and precludes the public from seeing the ‘collective decision making process.’ Polling such as telephone, email, or in person, of a majority or more of the council or board, outside a meeting that is open to the public, can be violation of the Open Public Meetings Act,” announced Goodman. Continue reading
The meeting was called by the Skagit chapter of the Citizens’ Alliance for Property Rights.
About 120 people filled the American Legion Hall on Tuesday night to discuss the water and property rights issues facing Skagit County. Among them were property owners and Alliance members, who took the state’s 2001 instream flow rule to task.
When some at the meeting suggested building on their properties without county permission, one audience member shouted, “To hell with the county!”
CLEARWATER SETTLEMENT APPROVED – RECREATION GROUPS DECLARE VICTORY ON RECOMMENDED WILDERNESS CLAIMS
BOISE, ID (April 21, 2015)–A federal court has accepted the settlement agreement that resolves a lawsuit claiming that the Clearwater National Forest illegally closed recommended wilderness areas (RWA) to motorized use. The agreement, between the Forest Service and lawyers for the Idaho State Snowmobile Association and BlueRibbon Coalition, requires the agency to conduct a new analysis and issue a new decision to evaluate “motorized and over snow access management” in the areas. The Forest Service “dispute Plaintiffs’ claims” but acknowledged “that regional issuance of documents described as guidance for forest planning, including planning for RWA management, has led to confusion and misperception regarding the role that such documents serve ….”
The areas in dispute were decades ago recommended for wilderness designation by the Forest Service, but Congress has not acted on these recommendations. The areas have always received motorized use, and more recently mountain bike use, that would be prohibited in formally designated wilderness. Neither the initial ratings nor the present wilderness suitability have been diminished by these uses, and the “wilderness character” of the areas has remained the same under Forest Service evaluations.
The agreement, initially filed in October, 2014, contemplated a Forest Service effort to complete the new analysis prior to the start of the 2014-2015 winter snowmobile season. In the absence of a new decision, the agreement provided for management to revert to the 1987 Plan, which would allow snowmobile use. The Court did not complete its review of the agreement until the 2014-2015 winter use season had largely passed, and declined to vacate the challenged plan’s prohibition on motorized access. The Court “conditionally approved” the remainder of the agreement, and the Forest Service and Recreation Groups accepted the Court’s interpretation. The agreement also provides for payment of $30,000 toward legal fees incurred by the Recreation Groups.
“We have learned in decades of litigation that our court system produces imperfect outcomes” said Sandra Mitchell, Public Lands Director of the Idaho State Snowmobile Association, the lead plaintiff. “We would like to eliminate the effects of what we consider an illegal decision, but getting a new decision is a significant step. Ultimate progress must always occur through the agency, and we hope we have sown seeds toward that outcome here,” Mitchell noted.
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The ISSA is an Idaho nonprofit corporation providing a unified voice for the Idaho snowmobile community, seeking reasonable snowmobile access to public and private lands in Idaho, and educating public and private interests on snowmobile use, safety and access. www.idahosnow.org
The BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC) is a national non-profit organization that champions responsible recreation and encourages a strong conservation ethic and individual stewardship, while providing leadership in efforts to keep outdoor recreation alive and well — all sports; all trails. 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.BlueRibbonCoalition.Org
Contact: Paul Turcke, (208) 331-1800
Date: April 21, 2015
November 7th, 2014 – 6:15am
(Port Angeles) – More than a hundred people crammed the Port Angeles city council chambers last night, most protesting the Navy’s plans for electromagnetic warfare training over the west end of the Olympic Peninsula.
The US Forest Service is considering a permit that would allow the Navy to place radio frequency emitters on mobile trucks in the Olympic National Forest. Forest Service and Navy officials held a public forum on the plan last night.
But most of the those attending were strongly opposed, often interrupting the presenters. Every person asking questions was against the idea, echoing previous concerns about the effect of RF in the forest areas. Continue reading
“Panic has set in to the MoveOn.org crowd. To them, transparency and choice are very threatening.”
An observer at the Aug. 26 Sequim City Council hearing could be forgiven for being confused by what they witnessed.
First, there were competing sign-waving folks outside the meeting venue. Everyone who attended appeared to be focused on the last item on the agenda—the two local initiatives that had qualified to be on the general ballot in November.
The first measure, titled “Proposition 1” would make collective bargaining sessions between the city and any public-sector unions open to the public. The second, Prop 2, would allow Sequim city employees to have the choice of being in the union or not. They could not be fired from their job if they were not in the union. Transparency and choice were clearly frightening concepts to MOVE ON.org, which appealed to its hard-core followers to picket the meeting. Continue reading
Officials in the City of College Station, Texas, announced that the city government would be withdrawing from ICLEI, an international organization linked to the United Nations and its controversial “Agenda 21.” Local Tea Party activists and concerned citizens promptly applauded the decision as another victory for national sovereignty and property rights.
Communities and lawmakers across the nation have been fighting back against the UN’s so-called “sustainable development” schemes for years. But the trend is accelerating as more and more cities and towns cancel their memberships in “ICLEI — Local Governments for Sustainability,” formerly known as the “International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives.” Continue reading
Oregon County: Abandoned and Safeguarding Their Own Community – Unintended consequences of government owning land
Here is a video about a county in Oregon that’s so cash-strapped there’s not enough money for law enforcement anymore. Citizen volunteers have stepped up to fill the void — with “Citizens Against Crime” handling theft cases and patrolling their roads and neighborhoods. These are not “vigilantes” but law-abiding citizens protecting themselves from crime and chaos.
This government has been forced to cut back severely on one of its most central duties.
Watch this short video, and learn firsthand why the Oregon county bumbled into their predicament:
Spoiler alert: Josephine County is broke because the BLM and environmentalists shut down local logging (a major part of the local economy, and a source of county government revenue), and now the citizens have to perform a critical government service by themselves because their government is broke. Read more about the story by clicking here, and here. The county tried to raise taxes, but with less work the people couldn’t afford it and voted no. Whatcom County’s just decided to give up over 8,800 acres of productive DNR timberland for a park, even though it’s finances are often in crisis. Wages have been frozen for quite a while, furloughs and basic services are cut while planning, trail and park spending grows steadily.
Law enforcement is a legitimate and necessary government function. Environmental protection has been over-prioritized to criminalize normal human activities at a tremendous cost to individuals and the collective. Whatcom County could go down hard if we don’t get our priorities straight. Just like that county in Oregon. Continue reading
On Monday morning, February 25, 2013, a notice was sent out from the Skagit County web server announcing a special ceremony the next day. The purpose was to celebrate Skagit County’s receipt of the Smart Communities Award from former Governor Gregoire and to recognize the outstanding contributions of over 60 local community leaders in a project that had taken over three years and cost in excess of 1.2 million, most of the amount in tax dollars, in the form of a grant from the EPA. The county was obligated for an additional third of that, but was able to satisfy the requirement by “in-kind” contributions utilizing paid staff as well as volunteers. After an intense process of goal setting, obtaining grant money, establishing committees, hiring inspiring speakers, obtaining studies from well paid consultants, conducting local meetings to obtain citizen involvement in predetermined outcomes and drafting a series of recommendations, the project was presented to the public and elevated to the Skagit Council of Governments (SCOG) in April 2012 for consideration and implementation. So, an awards ceremony recognizing the county for its progressive vision and complementing those who played a key role seemed appropriate after the completion of such a long and arduous task. Continue reading
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