Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Legal action is underway to ban OHV traffic in forest

The center for Sierra Nevada conservation, and center for biological diversity, plaintiffs, are asking the court to order the Eldorado National Forest Service (FS) closed to all OHV use until each route has gone through site specific analysis with public comment to determine its environmental acceptability before designation. It has taken the FS 15 years to get this far without site specific analysis and it took the FS 15 years to complete the Rock Creek EA & EIS. The forest service doesn’t have the funds to undertake site specific analysis. There are provisions in the travel management plan stating that if adequate funds are not available to manage OHV routes they shall be closed. We cannot let the FS be the sole defendants of our interests. Our legal interests in the action are not identical, and on many issues are contrary to the FS defendants’ interests, and we anticipate a need to present different information and legal arguments that might be presented by some or all defendants. We are particularly concerned about the prospect of settlement negotiation and wish to have a role in any possible settlement discussions. In settlement or formal litigation CERA and the OHV community typically presents different issues, arguments, and evidence than that presented by governmental agencies’ legal counsel...read more

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