Friday, April 25, 2014

Tombstone's wilderness water woes continue

A recent fire in Tombstone's historical district has brought back the battle between the city and the feds over the town's water supply. Tombstone gets its water from a highly protected wilderness area in the Huachuca Mountains. The pipeline that transports water 30 miles across Cochise County has had problems since the Monument Fire in 2011. According to the City they still haven't been able to get the proper equipment into the area to permanently fix the issues. The structures in Tombstone's historic district are like a tinderbox. In the past few years alone the site of what is currently Old West Studio has burned down twice and continued water worries have some residents like Hal Cloughley on edge. Cloughley's home has caught fire twice in the last three years. The most recent time was just a couple of weeks ago as flames from Old West Studio jumped onto his property. Cloughley said, "This whole town could have went up. I was up there fighting it with a water hose." The last time Tombstone had to put a fire out of this size firefighters used up nearly one third of the towns water. Tombstone Mayor Stephen Schmidt says if their water pipeline was running at full capacity they wouldn't have the threat of running dry. "We've put temporary fixes on them but every monsoon they get washed out," explains Schmidt. Without being able to access all of their spring heads in the Huachucas with mechanized equipment, every time the pipeline gets washed out they are forced into a long process of getting it fixed. "One time they shut us down for using a wheelbarrow because it's mechanized. I guess it is because it has a wheel I don't know," says Schmidt...more

But I'm sure Senators Udall and Heinrich are correct in proposing to surround Las Cruces with Wilderness  and other restrictive designations.  We have no need for mechanical equipment to repair or construct flood control dams.  The Border Patrol has no need for motorized vehicles in this area.  Ranchers can walk or go horseback to check and repair their pipelines and windmills.  Hunters can carry their own game out.  Campers can park on the edge and peek in.  Yes, it will all be wonderful. 


Anonymous said...

The arguments about motor vehicles are wrong. This is untrue. Off road travel like ATV's, dirt bikes, dune buggies, etc. are prohibited within the national monuments. Senators Heinrich and Udall have done an outstanding job in their proposed legislation.

Anonymous said...

Here is Mayor Schimdt discussing pipeline problems at Tombstone:

Frank DuBois said...

Please read S. 1805 and the Wilderness Act of 1964, which allows no motorized vehicles or mechanical equipment. I specifically mentioned wilderness in my comments.

Anonymous said...

Here is the legislation. You are not right. "(i) IN GENERAL- Except as needed for administrative purposes or to respond to an emergency, the use of motorized vehicles in the Monument shall be permitted only on roads designated for use by motorized vehicles in the management plan." Please read THE BILL.

Frank DuBois said...

The issue is Wilderness. My comments were about Wilderness, which makes up about half of their bill, and was the topic of the article linked to. The article was about Wilderness and my comments were about Wilderness. Sec. 4(c)of the Wilderness Act states "there shall be no temporary road, no use of motor vehicles, motorized equipment or motorboats, no landing of aircraft, no other form of mechanical transport, and no structure or installation within any such area."

Sec.3 of S.1805 designates 8 different wilderness areas.

So my comments about Wilderness are not wrong.