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My comments about President Bush's order to public land managers to look for more room for hunters to hunt

August 18, 2007

To: Chief Kimbell, Deputy Chief Collins, RF Tidwell, DRF McAllister & R-1 Forest Supervisors,

On Friday July 17, president Bush ordered the managers of the land administered by the USFS and BLM to look for more room for hunters to hunt on this land and to step up efforts to conserve places where wildlife roam.

I am troubled by the first part of this request. As you know, I am a retired Forest Service employee. My entire career was spent in R-1.

First, one of the agency's current priorities is to enhance wildlife habitat on the public land it manages. The managers of the BLM and USFS know that surveys have shown that for every hunter that uses public land, there are between 260 and 280 other recreationists using public land who prefer to obtain their enjoyment from viewing living animals. This survey included children.

Of course Bush's advisors researched this fact and told the president before he made the announcement below. The president obviously didn't think it was important.

Second, hunting licenses, tags, and determininghunting units are the sole responsibility of the state Fish and Game Departments. The public lands provide the location for people to hunt that choose to hunt.

Never before in the history of the Forest Service has the agency favored one recreational usewhich simultaneously degrades another ... especially when the one being favored is used by a minority of forest visitors.

Of course Bush's advisors researched these facts and told the president before he made the announcement below. The president obviously didn't think they were important.

Clearly, there is at least one way forest supervisors might comply with the presidents orders ... open more gates during hunting season that have previously been closed to protect the natural resources of the forest. In some cases these gates were closes to reduce the hunting pressure on some wildlife species.

The Forest Service gave me the opportunity to workon a regular basis with the NEPA for 11 years. I can cite important sections from memory. I know that any (emphasis added) changes made to the past management of any national forest to comply with Bush's order will require a new NEPA Decision.

I will just remind you that I have very effective search methods and when I find out that a gate was opened (or another action taken) to comply with Bush's order, it will be instant lawsuit time, since there will be no Decision for me to appeal.

Chief Kimbell andDeputy Chief Collins never respond to my comments ... even when I request a response, so I won't expect to hear from them.

Therefore, I ask this of you RF Tidwell and DRF McAllister. Please email me a short note so that I know: 1) you are in receipt of this message, and 2) you understand my concern.

Thank you.

Dick Artley

Dick Artley
415 East North 2nd
Grangeville, Idaho 83530
dartley@connectwireless.us 

CC via their WEB forms to:

Senator Jeff Bingaman, Chairman, Committee on Energy and Natural Resources

Senator Ron Wyden, Subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests

Rep. Nick J. Rahall, Chairman, House Committee on Natural Resources

Rep. Raul Grijalva, Parks, Chairman, Forests and Public Lands Subcommittee

 

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