Comments:

Posted by Elton on
I don't understand how these people think we can afford to buy and maintain MORE land when there's a crisis in Washington State to fund the current parks system. If they want to protect Washington land, why don't they help fund the failing parks system?
Posted by David Morrison on
Once it is locked up, it is gone forever.
Posted by Dan on
This is a copy of the letter I recently sent to THE DAILY WORLD and the VIDETTE.

The last three years most residents on the Olympic Peninsula, like around the nation, have been occupied with trying to sustain a living with things to worry about like higher taxation to bail out our state and federal elected representatives and governments that have an insatiable propensity to “blow” our tax dollars, rising fuel and grocery prices, the fiscal and physical impacts of a “government” health plan which along with other out-of control entitlement programs are destined to bankrupt our country, our national security and etc.

Meanwhile over this same period, a small group of peninsula environmental clubs, along with some high-powered outside support, have been plotting and drafting their design for encumbering over 134,000 more acres of Olympic National Forest into the Wilderness designation, designating most of the major rivers on the Peninsula Wild and Scenic and transferring 37,000 acres of private and state timberlands into the Olympic National Park.

This initiative I am writing about is THE WILD OLYMPICS CAMPAIGN. Apparently initiated about three years ago, the Wild Olympics Coalition reportedly has conducted an “exhaustive local stakeholder consultation process” holding twenty-five workshops and more than 200 meetings with different “stakeholder” groups in all four Peninsula counties. These meetings have culminated into the launching of a website on July 20th, 2010, outlining its proposal.

I’m wondering how many of your readers are aware of this years-long campaign and website? Even for the few who monitor what is going on in the Olympic National Forest, this initiative has escaped the “radar screen” except for a few scattered comments, mostly by Forest Service personnel, suggesting something was going on. The Forest Service employees are not under any obligation to reveal any information and are basically a bystander in the whole process. But with 134,000 acres of their management responsibility involved, it is unthinkable that they weren’t kept in the information loop.

The covert nature in which this campaign has been conducted is not unusual as it is the same limited public process that was used to implement the Northwest Forest Plan, additions to Roadless Areas and developing the National Forest Access and Travel Management Plan for the Olympics. The participating public has been purposely targeted.

The most repulsive element of this campaign is that all of our elected representatives—county, state and federal—have been aware and involved, Congressman Dicks and Senators Murray and Cantwell from the get-go, and not one of them has taken the initiative to inform and include the general public in their voting districts of this project.

All of the Peninsula county commissioners are reportedly supportive of this project except Grays Harbor County’s who apparently haven’t taken a position on it as yet. The campaign coalition’s website includes a
petition to Dicks, Murray and Cantwell to sign in support of the campaign. It does not include an opportunity to petition dissent.

As this draft proposal now stands, if approved it will add another layer of preservation protection in the Olympic National Forest which will further erode public access and the level of permitted activities, mostly recreational, on the Olympic Forest as we experienced with the implementation of the Northwest Forest Plan, Roadless Areas and the Road Access and Travel Management Plan. This new level of protection will do nothing to improve habitat and populations of wildlife and fish and clean water beyond what currently exists. For deer and elk, it will most likely have a negative impact.

An initiative to bring this issue before the public locally is underway. In the meantime your readers can go to the website (www.wildolympics.org) to become familiar with this issue.


Harold B. Brunstad
1178 U. S. Highway 12
Montesano, WA 98563
(360)249-5829
Posted by Dan Boeholt on
At the Working Wild Olympic’s public meeting Monday night at AHS Commons from 6:30pm –8:30pm, doors open at 6:00, the featured speaker will be Chuck Cushman, the founder of the American Lands Right Association, who has successfully defeated the numerous attempted land-grabs here on the Olympic Peninsula, in the past. The Working Wild Olympic Coalition has joined his Association and looks forward to again defeating this latest attempted, land-grab Wild Olympics Enviro “Con-Pain”, that wants to change 210,000 acres of working forestland and open public access, to locked-up National Park, Wilderness and Wild and Scenic designation.

The press has nicknamed Chuck "Desert Fox" and "Mr. Rent-A-Riot" as a result of his aggressive and successful efforts to protect landowners and permittees from overreaching Federal, State and other land-use controllers.

Chuck will be arriving on Saturday to Grays Harbor and plans on being at our GH Chamber Expo booth, #93, in the afternoon.



Dan Boeholt

Aberdeen

Spokesman, Working Wild Olympics Coalition
Posted by Kris Wilson on
I am a flyfishing guide, expedition whitewater kayaker, and avid outdoorsmen. I have decended nearly every watershed in the Olympics. Once access is gone, the park may as well be gone for many. I am able bodied and have and will hike days to access the headwaters of the places I love. Others are not. Why would they have any interest in protecting a place they will never be able to go yet live mere miles away. I want access restored up the Sam's river, not diminished in an effort for some with an agenda to claim as their own private "sanctuary". I am for some changes and regulation, this is a measure that I in good faith cannot support. This is not an effort to preserve land but to limit access to it. I live here as do many that this will affect. "Go home", I say to the wild olympic campaign. Go back to your job which produces nothing, and your countless hours of protesting while you draw off your trust fund and drive countless miles in your vehicle while proclaiming to be an earth warrior against the burning of fossil fuels. The majority of you are not the real article, nor have ever worked a real job, and are merely hypocrites doing your "do gooder" thing. If you have your way you will reduce all of us residences of the penninsula to tour guides and coffee shop workers. Get out of the penninsula. I don't need you in my backyard preserving the things that I hold dear. I and many others are fine without you. By the way the olympics are just fine without you too.
Posted by Ozette on
"Mr. Speaker, Olympic National Park is characterized by the National Park Service as "conceived in controversy, born of compromise, and developed amidst constant conflict."

Controversy, compromise, and conflict are all reflected in this bill. There was controversy after its inception. Significant compromise was achieved in response to the issues raised. And, most importantly for the future, this legislation embodies an opportunity to resolve, once and for all, major conflicts that have been associated with Olympic National Park during its 38-year history."

....Representative Bonker, 94th US Congress, 1976, supported by then Governor Evans-then Senator Evans that brought that false promise back up in 1986, now citizen Evans that is currently petitioning to the 112th US Congress a resolution to repair a degraded road in Stehekin Valley of the North Cascades Complex.

Does it take 35 years for someone with the best intent to see they are the problem in the first place?
Posted by karey gochoel on
I want to be able to hike in my forest, they keep the trails open in the Cascades, keep my trails open in the Olympics.
Posted by Greg Woodworth on
Fighting this should be a no-brainer, except that you're working with D.C. tree-huggers. "They" want to spend $900 million on nothing. No benefit to anybody. We are currently running a $1.4 trillion deficit. Cutting this foolishness will be a .0006% dent in this deficit, but it would be a start. Contact the House Subcommittee on National Parks at http://naturalresources.house.gov/About/MembersParks.htm and tell them to cut the funding for this. Doc Hastings from our state is the Chair of Natural Resources. Tell everyone you know to email them. They are looking for easy cuts right now, and this one should be a cinch.
Posted by Lovie on
Great stuff, you hleepd me out so much!
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Posted by Tom Quick on
In some regards I would like to see the people who are pushing this proposal buy some of this land, BUT with their own money. Many of the people pushing this are doctors, lawyers, and other professionals a long way from the poor small logging towns. Or some of them are retired professionals. Some maybe are people that are sponging off the government (us) already. If they used their money (OH, NO!) they couldn't buy much, and they could not fund their next attack on the people that WORK in the world.

RF5N
Posted by Hank on
I have read all of what wild olympics is about at first I support what I thought was keeping our forest pristine, but then as I learned more I thought what our these people asking. No one is raping the forest and parks of the Olympics, so the need to capture more land is ridiculous to for more wild lands. This plan will not make for more places to take your children, it is bad enough we have to pay for the discovery card to be able to go sit by a river these days. All of this was it seemed to me being done behind closed doors and the public as never had a say in any of it or even know and probably won't know till it is too late. I have been writing to the Senators and Representatives who have been supporting this plan but sometimes it is scary that we will not be able to control any of it.
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The feds will mismanage this to the point that we, as americans wont be able to enjoy our natural resources.

— Craig Larson
Stanwood