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BLUERIBBON COALITION ACTION ALERT! Wilderness Rope-A-Dope Fails - Grassroots Motivated By Massive Wilderness Bill "In terms of acreage, NREPA is the largest threat to public access to public lands pending in Congress today. However, there are many smaller bills, each equally unfair in denying public access, that need immediate attention by our members and supporters." Dear BRC Action Alert Subscribers, Today the House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands is hearing testimony on H.R. 980, the Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act (NREPA). NREPA, first introduced in 1993 by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), would designate 24 million acres of Wilderness across five Western states (Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming). The bill has also been described as the modern incarnation of the Wildlands Project, an ambitious proposal first conceived by Dave Foreman, the founder of Earth First!. The Wildlands Project would "re-wild" approximately half of North America by outlawing most human use and occupancy. But these large multi-state Wilderness bills are difficult to pass. That is why the Wilderness lobby has been pushing an "incremental approach." Wilderness groups say the smaller bills are a "reasonable compromise" to the NREPA behemoth. BRC's Greg Mumm says it isn't working! "Our phone has been ringing off the hook and our email in-boxes are flooded," Mumm said in a recent BRC Media Release. BRC and other OHV groups' membership trends ticked upward during the first two months of the year and some believe that may be because of the attention to the omnibus and NREPA bills. Greg notes that opposition to additional Wilderness is now coming from a much wider range of interests. Outfitters, mountain bikers and equestrians are expressing concerns ranging from loss of access to problems maintaining trails in Wilderness. Increased opposition is also coming from local governments and state officials. How you can help: Send a letter to Congress saying NO TO NREPA. CLICK HERE BRC and other national OHV groups work together to track the hundreds of pieces of legislation affecting your right to ride. Your response to our action alerts is our best tool in fighting these land lock-up bills. A short list of just a few of the bills on our radar is included below. Thanks in advance for your action, Brian Hawthorne Ric Foster Public Lands Policy Director Public Lands Department Manager 208-237-1008 ext 102 208-237-1008 ext 107 PS: We want our members to know that we appreciate it when you all take time from work and family to respond to our alerts. We try our best to make certain your time isn't wasted. PSS: BRC's Public Lands guys want to give kudos to Dave Hurwitz and the gang over at Snowmobile Alliance of Western States (SAWS). Insofar as grass roots activists go, Hurwitz and his SAWS volunteers in Idaho, Oregon and Montana have been aggressively opposing NREPA since 1993. SAWS has a lot of good information on NREPA and other Wilderness bills on their website: Snowmobile Alliance of Western States - Home page Here are a few of the bills BRC is watching: H.R.1769 & S. 721 -Alpine Lakes Wilderness expansion in the State of Washington Mojave Desert Wilderness bill - Senator Feinstein's effort to designate more Wilderness in San Bernardino, Imperial, and Riverside counties H.R.192 Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act (CIEDRA) will designate over 3 million acres of additional Wilderness in Idaho Montana's Beaverhead-Deerlodge Conservation, Restoration and Stewardship Act, a bill to add an additional half million acres of new Wilderness in Montana Legislation to designate Johnson Valley a National Recreation Area (BRC is supporting this one!) SUWA's massive Utah Wilderness bill (H.R.1925 and S.799) The ongoing county-by-county Wilderness approach currently underway in Nevada, Colorado and Utah