Friday, February 18, 2011

Montanans see their ideas in Obama outdoors initiative

"The same folks in different clothes," was how rancher Dusty Crary described the White House scene on Wednesday when President Barack Obama announced his America's Great Outdoors Initiative. Last June, Montana outdoors advocates and presidential Cabinet secretaries were swapping stories and barbecue on the Rolling Stone Ranch near Ovando, during the initiative's first national listening session. Eight months later, the Choteau rancher and fellow Montanan Denny Iverson went to Washington to see their ideas become the framework of a national policy. "We first had a get-together in the Interior Department and some chitchat with the secretary of agriculture and the secretary of interior, and Lisa Jackson of the EPA," Crary said in a phone interview from Washington. "Then we just walked over to the White House and got ushered through. Everybody just milled around in Green Room and Blue Room until the president came in." Crary got to stand next to Obama's podium as the president spoke about the initiative on Wednesday. In his address, Obama said grass-roots ideas were essential to good environmental stewardship. "I can't stress enough how that impresses me, that Washington is finally starting to get it," said Iverson, a Potomac rancher and logger who helps lead the Blackfoot Challenge. "They get out in the country and hear what people want, let us help and frame policy and funding so it works out there." They also met dozens of other outdoors enthusiasts, from inner-city Los Angeles to the Florida Everglades, who contributed to the America's Great Outdoors concepts...more

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

And Obama drew the veil over their eyes. Do you really think this administration will listen to the country folks? Dream on!