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Old 05-13-2014, 07:30 PM   #1
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Name: Butch
Clear Creek Recreation Area Bill H.R. 1913 Re Reintroduced, Update April 2017

4/17/17 tuhis is good place to check status
https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-...bill/1913/text

4/5/17 From Don Amador; see post 40

10/2/2016 From ARRA
H.R. 1838. Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act
As we reported previously, the House of Representatives passed the Clear Creek legislation in July and the measure was sent to the Senate. The committee of jurisdiction, Senate Energy and Natural Resources, received the bill and held a hearing on the measure on September 22nd. This hearing was a key hurdle we needed to overcome in order to move the legislation forward to the full Senate. We are literally running out of time. To get this bill across the finish line, it has to be done during the Lame Duck session. The Director of the Bureau of Land Management did testify at the hearing and the Obama Administration has officially come out against the recreation portion of the bill, the very section we care about! The Director testified that while BLM supports the proposed Wilderness designation in the bill, it cannot support provisions that could increase the exposure of public lands users and employees to naturally occurring asbestos. This despite an independent risk assessment study commissioned by the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation that concluded management and operational strategies could be effectively employed in the area to allow OHV use without exposing the public to unacceptable risks.

The committee needs to report out the measure to the full Senate and it is impossible at this stage to know whether that will happen. If the Democrats on the committee object to the bill because of the Administration’s position, it might make it difficult to overcome such opposition with so few days remaining in this session of Congress. We will keep you posted.

3/17/2016
Clear Creek Recreation & Conservation Act HR:1838
A huge milestone was passed today when H.R. 1838 the Clear Creek Recreation and Conservation Act was reported (i.e. voted) out of the Natural Resources Committee.
We would like to thank all of the OHV community for their tireless efforts and support of this legislation. All of your calls and letters did not fall on deaf ears and this legislation is proof of that. Congressman Jeff Denham helped with bill corrections during the markup process to address the wild and scenic rivers concerns that many users had. The legislation will sunset the San Benito wilderness study area.
HR 1838 will now wait to be voted on by Congress which we hope will happen before years end. It is rare in this day and age that legislation has bipartisan support and we feel that the broad range of support on both sides of the isle as well as that of all effected stakeholder groups will get us across the finish line. While there is no guarantee this legislation will become law, we are cautiously optimistic that Clear Creek Recreation Area will be reopened.
There is not much more we can do at this point, it is time for the legislation to run its course through the process. No dates have been set for votes in the House or Senate but we have been told that it is very possible that we will see this happen before the years end. If and when there is news to report we will make sure everyone gets the information.
Please remember that this legislation would not have been created or gotten this far without the efforts of Congressmen Sam Farr, David Valadao, and Jeff Denham. Their bipartisan efforts show that Congress does hear the people and can do something about it.


Update 3/7/16
Per Don Amador, CCRA has cleared the public lands subcommittee and is waiting for mark up. The Senate or House could pick this up as a stand alone bill or bundled with other legislation.
They might be too obsessed "the Donald" to do that though.

Update 12/11/15
Video thanks to Don Amador, BRC; key points, so you don't have to wade through two hours:
"...highlights and key testimony/discussion related to H.R. 1838. Understanding that folks have limited time, the HQ has noted key times and discussion themes.

This is a must watch video for all of us who have been engaged in efforts to reopen Clear Creek to OHV use.
LINK to VIDEO
http://naturalresources.house.gov/vi...ID=ZpUG0f-KhT0

00 – Chairman Tom McClintock and Ranking Member Debbie Dingall
06:49 – Cong. Sam Farr (history of issue, assumption of risk, OHV commission, economic hit to local business, thanks CA’s odd couple, Tobin, and Ron the Townhall King, etc.
023:50 – Cong. Sam Farr (wild and scenic rivers)
025:15 – Cong. Sam Farr (assumption of risk, closure is unacceptable)
035:29 – Cong. Jeff Denham (public land should be open for public use, user fees to support mang)
036:21 – Cong. Sam Farr (discusses user fee program to support mang)
037:12 – Cong. Jeff Denham (values local support, etc.)
RECESS

1:25 – Cong. Tom McClintock (assumption of risk, use of public lands)
1:27 – Kristin Bail/BLM (BLM’s position on the bill and reasons for closure)
1:38 – San Benito County Supervisor, Jerry Muenzer (risk models, economic import, support for bill)
1:43 – Chairman McClintock (questions Muenzer on closure)
1:44 – Chairman McClintock (questions BLM on closure, hx of serpentine in CA, etc.)
1:48 – Cong. Sam Farr (expresses concerns about BLM’s decision to close and need to find a way to manage the unit for OHV and access)
1:48:46 –Cong. Doug LaMalfa (questions BLM on risk assessment)
1:51 – Cong. Doug LaMalfa (questions Muenzer on EPA and 40 years of no health cases at Clear Creek)
1:53 – Cong. Bruce Westerman (talks about closures being a national issue, need to create access for youth and not create obstacles)
2:04 - Cong. Tom McClintock (closing remarks about closures being an important issue)



Thanks!




Background:

House Subcommittee to Hold Hearing on the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act and the California Minerals, Off-Road Recreation, and Conservation Act

On Wednesday, December 9 the House Natural Resources Committee, Subcommittee on Federal Lands will hold a legislative hearing on H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act and H.R.3668, the California Minerals, Off-Road Recreation, and Conservation Act. Each of these important bills will ensure responsible recreational access to prime OHV areas in California.

Please send an email urging your Representative to support these critical bills and urge their passage!

https://secure3.convio.net/arra/site...rAction&id=666
Sam Farr's bill is being reintroduced...

edit to bring to the front:
Call to Action from the Blue Ribbon Coalition

Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,

Earlier this year, California Representatives David G. Valadao (CA-21), Sam Farr (CA-20), and Jeff Denham (CA-10) introduced H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act, to direct the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to reopen the 75,000 acre Clear Creek Management Area in San Benito and Fresno counties for recreational use, including access for off-road vehicles. Additionally, the legislation would protect approximately 21,000 acres of BLM land adjacent to Clear Creek as the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness.

It is time for OHV recreationists from around the country to ask their Congressional Representative to sign on as a co-sponsor or supporter of this bi-partisan bill.

BRC is asking our members and their networks to contact their representative and ask for their support to re-open Clear Creek. Go to BRC's Rapid Response Center to find your congressperson. BRC has a sample letter below for your use.
USE THE LINK BELOW TO GO DIRECTLY TO YOUR CONGRESSMAN’S WEBSITE TO SUBMIT YOUR LETTER
https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members/

Thanks in advance for your support of this effort.
Don Amador, Western Representative, BlueRibbon Coalition


SAMPLE LETTER

Dear ___________:

As a constituent of yours and an outdoor recreationist, I ask you to co-sponsor H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act.

Earlier this year, California Reps. David G. Valadao (CA-21), Sam Farr (CA-21), and Jeff Denham (CA-10) introduced H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act, to direct the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to reopen the 75,000 acre Clear Creek Management Area in San Benito and Fresno counties for recreational use, including access for off-road vehicles. Additionally, the legislation would protect approximately 21,000 acres of BLM land adjacent to Clear Creek as the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness.

Once considered a premier off-road vehicle recreation site, Clear Creek was temporarily closed in 2008 to the public after an Environmental Protection Agency analysis about the risk created by naturally occurring asbestos.

The bill instructs the BLM to develop a rigorous plan to minimize the risk from asbestos exposure and educate visitors about the naturally occurring asbestos. The BLM would also be required to find ways to reduce the impact of off-road vehicles to protect the area's habitat.

"This legislation is one of the rare opportunities where all stakeholders will benefit from land designation legislation." said Steve Koretoff, member of the BlueRibbon Coalition and the American Motorcyclists Association. "It will allow responsible motorized recreation while at the same time protecting sensitive lands and habitat. Californians look forward to being able to recreate in this unique area once again."

Thanks in advance for your consideration of this request.

NAME ADDRESS CITY, STATE ZIP

kinda old background:
From our friend ET on SBR:
http://www.southbayriders.com/forums/threads/131120/

Info from our CORVA friends:

H.R. 1776 will be heard May 20, 2014 in the Natural Resources Subcommittee and looks like additional language has been added to it.
http://thomas.loc.gov/home/gpoxmlc113/h1776_ih.xml

The hearing is Tuesday, May 20, 2014, at 9:30 AM, in the 1324 Hearing Room in the Longworth House Office Building. The meeting is open to the public, and a live video stream will be broadcast at http://naturalresources.house.gov/live.

Ride on
Brewster
CORVA

And the BRC, but this is a year old:http://www.sharetrails.org/alerts/20...nt-area-update

and the AMA D36, today:
http://ama-d36.org/clear-creek-heari...-for-may-20th/
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Old 05-13-2014, 07:38 PM   #2
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Don Amador (BRC) Summary from 2011 (Good Stuff)

http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/t...a-06-22-11.pdf

Written Testimony of Don Amador
Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands Oversight
Hearing on "Opportunities for Outdoor Recreation on Public Lands"
Wednesday, June 22, 2011 10:00 AM

Testimony – Statement by Donald Amador that questions the BLM’s decision-making
process associated with the ongoing landscape level functional closure of the 75,000 acre
Clear Creek Management Area (CCMA) to all user groups on May 1, 2008. This unit is
managed by the Hollister Field Office (HFO) and is located in Fresno and San Benito
Counties in the Central Coast Mountain Range of California.

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I appreciate the opportunity to appear
before you today to share my views, the views of the BlueRibbon Coalition, and views of
other multiple-use interests about the single largest public land closure of its kind in U.S.
history.

My name is Don Amador; I am a native of Humboldt County in Northern California. I
currently live in Oakley, California in the Delta Region of the Central Valley. I am a
recreation and public land advocate who has championed responsible access to public
lands for the last 21 years. I am owner of Quiet Warrior Racing, a recreation and public
land consulting company. As a contractor to the BlueRibbon Coalition, I serve as its
Western Representative. In addition, I currently serve as a member of Region 5’s
California Recreation Resource Advisory Council.
Recently, I served on the Del Norte County/Forest Service stakeholder group, which
successfully brought diverse interest groups together to try and resolve contentious issues
surrounding a recent Forest Service Travel Management Decision. Based on that
experience and experience derived from service on other recreation-based stakeholder
groups, I am confident that with your help a solution to the Clear Creek closure saga can
be found.

Mr. Chairman, before getting into the substance of my concerns, I want to give the
committee a quick overview of CCMA. In 2002,
Dirt Rider Magazine
listed Clear Creek
as one of the top 10 OHV recreation sites in the country. It is located mostly in southern
San Benito County in the Coastal Mountain Range that separates the Salinas Valley from
the Central Valley. While the closure only “technically” closed 33,000 acres, it
functionally closed 75,000 acres since practically all route networks originate in the
closure area. Before the emergency closure in May 2008, the unit was open for OHV use
on approximately 242 miles of designated routes from October 16th to May 31.
This unit
also contains approximately 25 miles of county roads.
Clear Creek has been a historic mining area since the 19th century. California’s official
state gem, Benitoite, is found only in this area. In the 1950's and 1960's, the primary
mineral extracted was naturally occurring asbestos (NOA).
Today, the major mining
operations that produced asbestos have ceased operations. Yet, before the May 2008
emergency closure, the area remained a popular site for gem and mineral collectors. The
area is also a popular venue for the hunting community.

I have operated OHVs in CCMA since the early 1980s. As part of the land stewardship
program at BRC, I assisted the HFO from 2001-2008 at numerous amateur motorcycle
events by performing the SAE-J1287 20-inch sound test to make sure attendees complied
with state sound laws.
I consider many BLM employees on various units to be both personal friends and
professional colleagues who work hard to fulfill the agency’s multiple-use mandate,
protect natural resources, and jealousy guard public trust.

Sadly Mr. Chairman, unlike other BLM units in California, I believe the HFO with
support from EPA has failed to fulfill its congressional multiple-use mandate via its
current effort to use junk science in a scheme to create de-facto Wilderness without
Congressional approval or direction.

Ultimately, I believe that Congress is the appropriate legislative body that can help the
public get answers to the many unanswered questions regarding the bizarre and historic
closure of CCMA to all human uses and the ongoing decision-making process
surrounding the May 2008 emergency closure.

ISSUE ONE - Scientific Integrity of the Decision/Science Used to Issue the May 1,
2008 Emergency Closure Order
Based on the attached email (
Exhibit A
) obtained by FOIA, it appears the Department of
Interior’s scientific integrity policy has been compromised by HFO/EPA. When HFO
questions EPA as to why HFO should make an emergency land management closure
decision based on a risk analysis model so low that it is “perhaps zero”, EPA responded
by simply removing the phrase in the final report.
In an urgent April 2008 pre-closure meeting between BRC representatives and the
agency, BRC urged the HFO to not use flawed science to effect the May 1, 2008
emergency closure. Despite our substantive pleas, HFO decided to use flawed science
and personal agendas as a foundation for the closure and the subsequent NEPA planning
process.
NOA occurs on various public and private lands in 43 counties in California many of
which contain popular local, county, state, and federal recreation sites. Because many of
those areas are important for multiple-use activities, the California State Park Off-
Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission requested that the Off-Highway Motor
Vehicle Recreation Division (OHMVR) of California State Parks complete an
independent NOA health study.
On March 22, 2011, the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division of California
State Parks released an independent report analyzing naturally occurring asbestos
exposures associated with OHV recreation and hiking at Clear Creek. The report was
completed by scientists from the International Environmental Research Foundation
(IERF), the Department of Physics at Harvard University, and the Center for Applied
Studies of the Environment at the City University of New York.
2011 IERF Report
http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/pages/1140/f...3_8_11-web.pdf
The OHMVR Division commissioned the IERF report to gather more data to determine if
management and operational strategies could be employed at the CCMA to mitigate risk
while still allowing access to this premier off-highway vehicle recreation.
According to the report, “...
this risk
[health risk from NOA]
is similar to the lifetime risk
of death from smoking less than one cigarette over the same one year period
[riding
season].
Other recreational activities, such as swimming, hiking, and snow skiing are
over a 100-fold more dangerous.
The percentage of mesothelioma deaths predicted among the CCMA motorcycle riders
for both sexes (0.000016%) is more than 6,500-fold lower than percentage of
mesothelioma deaths in the US general population (0.11%).
Based on the IERF analysis, the results of which are included herein, there is clearly an
opportunity to allow OHV recreation at CCMA. Under the conditions we observed, and
similar seasonal conditions. OHV enthusiasts would not be exposed to unacceptably
high levels of airborne asbestos.”
According to IERF, EPA Region 9 continues to refuse access to their air sample and
seasonal asbestos background datasets.
As you might expect, the BLM and EPA continue to inexplicably defend their decision to
close CCMA to all human uses with the basis of that decision cast on the tenets of what
many users, other publics, and IERF scientists consider flawed science. It appears the
agency continues to favor a permanent ban on OHV recreation as articulated in the
current CCMA NEPA planning process.
IERF May 23, 2011 Response to BLM/EPA Defense of Flawed Science/Closure
http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/pages/1140/f...uttal-ccma.pdf

ISSUE TWO: Faux Liability Issue
BRC is
concerned HFO created an artificial liability for itself (and hence the taxpayer) in
its initial decision to issue an emergency closure order and in subsequent planning
documents without any consideration for other viable and reasonable means of
addressing what, if any risk, may exist. BRC is also concerned this faux liability issue, if
not addressed, could be used by the agency as justification to prohibit pro-OHV/access
alternatives from being selected.
BRC April 19, 2010 Letter on Liability Issue
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/C...ents_Supplemen
ta_4-19-10.pdf
As BRC stated, it believes the Hollister Field Office continues to chart its own and
strangely unique course with its decision-making framework. HFO’s continues to believe
that CCMA lands ought to be rendered inaccessible based wholly on a now disproved
assumption that a public health risk from NOA will impact OHV recreationists.
BRC believes HFO should review management prescriptions such as signs and public
outreach currently being used by sister land management agencies to caution the
recreation public about the life threatening hazards of rock climbing, snow skiing,
swimming, and boating.

ISSUE THREE – County Asserts Access Rights
On April 6, 2010 San Benito County passed a resolution that reopened approxiemtly 25
miles of county roads within CCMA.
April 6, 2010 San Benito County Resolution
http://www.sharetrails.org/uploads/S...olution_2010.p
df
Just as many user groups and other stakeholders questioned the decision-making process
used by the BLM/EPA to close roads and trails within CCMA, the County of San Benito
reviewed options to assert its right to manage their own roads within CCMA.
Ken Deeg, a local law enforcement officer and member of the Friends Clear Creek
Management Area and TimeKeepers Motorcycle Club, states
(
Exhibit B
) “...
in early
2010 after viewing the email information and photos I received through
[a]
FOIA that the
BLM and EPA manipulated and embellished the September 2005 dust sampling test, San
Benito County Board of Supervisors realized they were mislead by the BLM's Hollister
Field Office and voted to take back their roads inside Clear Creek and re-open them to
the public
....”
Again, after reviewing Deeg’s information, revelant laws, regulations, impacts of the
closure to the local economy, and science, the county came to the conclusion that its roads
do not present a health risk and that they should be open for public use.

ISSUE FOUR: Willful Obliteration of Existing Recreation Facilities Paid for by
Taxpayers and with User Fees
In its effort to create a non-motorized ecotopia, the HFO is erasing all evidence of OHV
recreation that has existed on this unit for the last 60 years; the agency has ripped up
relatively new public restroom facilities along the main access road. It has also
obliterated and/or rendered useless many traditional family camping sites in this same
area.
Between 1981 and 2007, OHV recreationists through the OHMVR grants program
contributed approxiemtly $7 million dollars to CCMA for trail and facility construction,
route maintenance, resource protection, and law enforcement. No doubt during that time
period, millions of dollars of appropriated funds have also been spent to manage multiple-
use recreation on that unit.
My assertions are substantiated by a June 17, 2011 letter
(
Exhibit C
)
from Commissioner
Eric Leuder, Chairman of the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation
Commission. On April 6, 2011, he witnessed in person the destruction of historic
recreation facilities. The destruction of property was authorized in a previous
environmental assessment based on the false assumption that the Evening Primrose was a
threatened species. Subsequently, new agency biologists have found that species to be
abundant. Yet, the HFO with this new information continues on its path to erase any
evidence that OHV recreation staging areas existed on the unit.
While the HFO works hard to destroy all vestiges of it multi-million dollar recreational
infrastructure, it has found the time to waste over $2 million dollars of taxpayer funds to
construct its much vaunted “decontamination center” at the entrance to CCMA.
Based on the aforementioned issues and concerns, I believe the HFO and EPA should
answer the following questions.
1 – Is the HFO and EPA’s decision-making process and supporting documents in
compliance with the
March 9, 2009 Memorandum (
Exhibit D
) on Scientific Integrity
issued by President Obama that
states the ...
public must be able to trust the science and
scientific process informing public policy decisions
?
2 – Is the HFO and EPA decision-making process and supporting documents in
compliance with subsequent
memos (
Exhibit E)
from EPA Administrator, Lisa Jackson,
and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, reaffirming the need to foster honesty and credibility
in science conducted and used by the Agencies?
3 – Why has the EPA refused to share requested information from their study with other
scientists?
4 – Why does the HFO continue to destroy and obliterate the existing recreation
infrastructure – paid for with state OHV grants and appropriated funds - when it knows
the premise for the authorization is flawed?
5 – Why did the HFO construct an unneeded multi-million dollar decontamination center?
6 – Did the HFO investigate any management tools that would have allowed the unit to
stay open during the planning process?
7 – Does the HFO/EPA intend to incorporate the IERF study into the planning process?
8 – Does the HFO intend to lift the emergency closure order?

Summary:
After reviewing hold harmless laws, federal statutes, and new science, I believe that
Congress and reasonable people will come to the conclusion that CCMA should be open
for public use. Unfortuntely, it appears the HFO/EPA continue to base the ongoing
closure and closure-oriented planning alternatives on flawed science, illogical decision-
making, and personal agendas that are in conflict with the multiple-use mission of the
BLM.

I urge Congress to investigate the decision-making process that ranges from the initial
process to issue an emergency closure in 2008 to the current planning effort. I believe
that the continued closure of CCMA is unwarranted and should be lifted immediately.
Also, the planning process is seriously flawed since it is based on what has been clearly
demonstrated to be inaccurate data and false assumptions. The planning process should
be put on hold until the scientific discrepancies between EPA and IERF are resolved.
What makes this closure so puzzling is that since recreationists started using CCMA after
WW2, there is not one documented case of mesothelioma caused by recreational exposure
to NOA at Clear Creek. In fact, there is not one documented case of mesothelioma
caused by recreational exposure to NOA anywhere in California.
According to BRC member Ed Tobin who served on the Central California Resource
Advisory Council (1995-2000), he had a number of conversations with then BLM State
Director Ed Hastey about CCMA as the BLM was in the process of completing an EIS to
guide the use of the area (ROD signed in Jan 1998).
During one of these conversations
Hastey told Tobin that despite EPA concerns about the asbestos risk and Fish and
Wildlife concerns about a T&E species, he felt that Clear Creek was the ideal location for
the BLM to promote motorized recreation.
He backed up these comments by approving
the EIS/ROD that allowed motorized recreation to continue. BRC agrees with Hastey’s
vision and decision.
Based on the decisions made by the HFO over the last 4-5 years, I believe that HFO has
veered away from Director Hastey’s vision for Clear Creek and will create a defacto-
Wilderness area at CCMA unless Congress intervenes
Recommendation:
Congress should consider bipartisan legislation that designates the 70,000-acre CCMA as
a National Recreation Area with OHV recreation and other multiple-use recreational
activities codified as “prescribed uses.” Congress could base the route network on the
242 miles of routes and 400 acres of open areas identified for motorized use in the 2005
CCMA Travel Management Plan.

On behalf of myself, BRC, and other access stakeholders, I thank the subcommittee for
allowing me to testify on this all too important issue. I look forward to working with
Congress and the agency to find a way to reopen CCMA for OHV recreation and other
multiple-use activities. At this time, I would be happy to answer any questions.
# # #
Attachments: Exhibits A, B, C, D, and E
______________________________________________________________
Don Amador
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Old 05-19-2014, 03:18 PM   #3
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The AMA will be testifying in support of HR 1776 tomorrow at 9:30 AM (assuming EST). Hearing page is here. Live stream will be here.

Here's the AMA note:

At 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Wayne Allard, vice president of government relations, is scheduled to testify in support of H.R. 1776, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act.

Watch the live webcast here.

The bill would reopen the Clear Creek Management Area for recreational use and designate about 21,000 acres of BLM land adjacent to Clear Creek as the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness.

Currently, the entire management area is closed to off-highway-motorcycles, due to concerns about naturally occurring asbestos.

However, the state of California’s Off Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission commissioned a study that found the levels of ambient asbestos to be less than the equivalent of smoking one cigarette a year.

For more information on H.R. 1776 please visit the AMA’s alert and take action.

If you are not yet an AMA member, please join the AMA to help us fight efforts to restrict responsible motorized recreation. More members means more clout against our opponents, and your support will help us fight for your riding rights – on the road, trail, racetrack, and in the halls of government. To join, go to AmericanMotorcyclist.com/membership/join.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:56 AM   #4
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I know that CORVA is also involved in this fight. I feel A LOT better about sending them my money than I do the AMA.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lunch Box View Post
I know that CORVA is also involved in this fight. I feel A LOT better about sending them my money than I do the AMA.
Hey Aaron—I'm curious about this. I've met some of the folks from CORVA and they're great, but I'm wondering if you'd share why you feel better about them than the AMA on this issue / in general. I myself have recently become much more jazzed about the AMA since they've been "openly" supporting lane splitting.
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Old 06-23-2014, 07:46 PM   #6
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You guys see this? http://ama-d36.org/san-benito-superv...ar-creek-plan/
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Old 06-26-2014, 12:46 PM   #7
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I wrote my congresswoman ...
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Old 06-26-2014, 05:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Jcrocker View Post
I wrote my congresswoman ...
yea!
Everyone needs to d this if our congresspersons are to perceive this to be important. That is, important for thei reelection.

I gotta go visit Zoe Lofgren. Again.

We represent a lot of votes. We gotta use it.
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Old 04-25-2015, 02:37 AM   #9
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A good bit I just came across:

At the very first meeting Jere Johnson, the EPA Representative, told me "all asbestos is dangerous"...

this is a good tidbit I just lifted from SBR:

EPA's own document says:

Source: http://hero.epa.gov/index.cfm/refere...ence_id/718457

These findings provide an important basis for substantiating both kinetically and pathologically the differences between chrysotile and the amphibole tremolite. As Calidria chrysotile has been certified to have no tremolite fiber, the results of the current study together with the results from toxicological and epidemiological studies indicate that this fiber is not associated with lung disease

also, "Terry" recently joined SBR and has been contributing a lot. He seems to have some great insight.
http://www.southbayriders.com/forums/threads/145868/
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Old 04-25-2015, 02:42 AM   #10
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Time for action, again:
On April 16, California Representatives David G. Valadao (CA-21), Sam Farr (CA-21), and Jeff Denham (CA-10) introduced H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act, to direct the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to reopen the 75,000 acre Clear Creek Management Area in San Benito and Fresno counties for recreational use, including access for off-road vehicles.

Blue Ribbon Coalition (BRC) is asking us to
...OHV recreationists, businesses, conservation groups, environmental organizations, clubs, and local government to express your strong support for H.R. 1838... The congressional representatives listed below should be commended for their hard work in crafting this comprehensive bi-partisan legislation.

BILL SPONSORS

The Honorable Sam Farr
United States House of Representatives
1126 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
Email: alec.arago@mail.house.gov
Fax: (831) 424-7099

The Honorable David G. Valadao
United States House of Representatives
1004 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515
Email: Cassie.Welch@mail.house.gov
Fax: (202) 225-3196

The Honorable Jeff Denham
United States House of Representatives
1730 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Email: Chris.DelBeccaro@mail.house.gov
Fax: (202) 225-3402

I will also contact my Congressperson Zoe Lofgren directly.
Please spread the word.
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Old 04-29-2015, 12:16 PM   #11
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This week I stopped into my congressperson’s office. I was told email of constituent concerns were read every day and prioritized according to frequency of the issue being raised.

I just went to Zoe Lofgren’s website:
https://lofgren.house.gov/
clicked on “Contact Zoe”
clicked on “Send Zoe an email”
entered my zip code…

then wrote:
Sam Farr has reintroduced H.R. 1838 to reopen Clear Creek. Please support this legislation. Please encourage your congressional colleagues to do the same.

Background:

The Bureau of Land Management closed the Clear Creek Management Area to the public in May 2008. This is an area south of Hollister and near Coalinga that has been enjoyed by motorcyclists, rock hound folks, hunters, etcetera for at least half a century. This area has been closed based on the presence of “naturally occurring asbestos", despite the fact that there has not been an incident of asbestos related illness in the area's history. “Naturally occurring asbestos" is present in at least 44 of California’s 58 counties.

Since the time of closure, the BLM has flagrantly violated the public trust in the Environmental Impact Study and Resource Management Plan development process, and violated the National Environmental Protection Act.

More striking however, is the fraud committed to justify this action. Rick Cooper, manager of the Hollister Field Office should be removed from his position and prosecuted for these crimes.

This criminal behavior and disregard for the public trust is summarized well in a letter by one of my friends:

from Ken Deeg:

Dear Congressman Farr, 04-07-2010

I am a Police Officer with the City of Santa Cruz and have been employed there for almost 18 years. I wanted to pass on a little information I found that I hoped would garner your support to re-open the Clear Creek Management Area. I have been recreating in the Clear Creek Management Area since 1968 when I was a young boy.

The “Friends of Clear Creek Management Area” (I am a member) requested from the BLM's Hollister Field Office information regarding Clear Creek under the Freedom of Information Act. After going through many of the reports, memos and emails I found some interesting information that you need to be aware of.

Using FOIA I also requested the photographs the EPA took during their test to record their "as close to real life" testing procedures.

On September 28, 2005 the EPA conducted their dry season dust sampling and took many photographs to document their study. The CCMA was closed to the public during the test due to the BLM enacting a dry season closure. In the photos and DEIS comment I attached you can clearly see the roadway where the ATV's and motorcycles are riding; it is very dusty. I want to point out is the CCMA road has had tons of gravel placed and compacted on it over the years to keep vehicle traffic safe and to control erosion. In the photos the EPA took during their testing they photographed a portion of the roadway from the Oak Flat staging area back towards the entrance. In these photos you can clearly see tractor tracks and scrape marks on the roadway, which appear to cover the fresh tire tracks. Per the BLM Hollister field office there are no records of road maintenance during this time period and, per their own policy, they do not conduct road maintenance during the dry season.

The BLM purposely softened the roadway using a tractor to create dustier conditions just prior to the EPA test. This action severely undermines the public's trust in the BLM and EPA. I have attached the photographs for viewing.

On March 4, 2008 at 0831 hours, Mike Poole sent Henri Bisson an email titled: Clear Creek Asbestos Problem-Serious. The following is from that email. I have attached the complete email.

“If the EPA risk assessments hold true in their final report to be completed late April or early May, we plan to close the area off to public use. This temporary/emergency closure would encompass approximately 32,000 acres-perhaps even more to logically secure the area at key points. Subsequently, we will revise the Clear Management Plan and decide on a preferred alternative regarding future use.”

“The exposure rates are much higher than expected.” “Both the BLM Toxicologist Karl Ford and the Departmental industrial hygienist Tim Radtke have reviewed the draft EPA findings. At this stage, they have not disputed the risk assessment to human health. This includes the EPA protocols for sampling, analysis and modeling outcomes. We anticipate the closure will go into effect around May 1-concurrent with the posting of the final report by EPA.”

I have the Karl Fords memo to Rick Cooper dated February 8, 2008 regarding review of “Clear Creek Management Area Asbestos Exposure and Human Health Risk Assessment,” Region 9 EPA. Ford had many concerns about the EPA test results.

The HFO BLM had been in direct contact all along with the EPA regarding their test results and knew the EPA’s position regarding the risk assessment was “uncertainty or perhaps zero.” The draft is not yet out yet and when they do receive it, it still states “uncertainty and perhaps zero.” The EPA’s report does not reflect a need to close CCMA.

On 03-07-2008 at 1332 hours Rick Cooper sent Jim Abbott an email titled: Discussion on Clear Creek.

First bulleted paragraph: "Making a decision the minute the final report comes out gives the appearance that BLM did not even take time to consider the report. The intent of the RMP was to analyze land use on the project area utilizing the assessment data. It is in BLM's interest to have an open public process (even a short one) prior to making a decision for closure and may aid in our defense of any appeals."

Second bulleted paragraph: "BLM will need to close all county roads in CCMA to effectively close and control access to the Hazardous Asbestos Area. Not fully disclosing BLM's intent (closure) with key audiences identified in the Pre Comm. Plan and then 2 weeks later closing the CCMA could be detrimental for our long term relations and credibility with our stakeholders."

On 04-11-2008 at 1105 hours, after receiving the final draft EPA Executive summary report regarding the asbestos test/study of Clear Creek, Timothy Moore sent Rick Cooper an email regarding the EPA's report. Also included with the executive summary is a three-fold information sheet titled "Asbestos in the Environment at the Clear Creek Management Area."

Mr. Moore writes:
“Rick- On the FAQ's- we need to change the information packet we sell that contains, "Asbestos in the Environment at the Clear Creek Management Area." some of this information in this three page handout conflicts with the new EPA data, such as pg 2 "low levels of asbestos are not likely to be harmful to your health."
I think the BLM needs to develop its own FAQ's for the CCMA EIS process.
Questions could be: Why the emergency closure?...”

I have attached Timothy Moore's original email for your reference.

On 04-11-2008 at 1342 hours Rick Cooper sent Jere Johnson and Arnold Den of the EPA an email regarding the Executive Summary.

Subject: uncertainty in model.
”Jere and Arnold,
Just reading through the executive summary. The last paragraph places some doubt as to the adequacy of the model used. The risk could be lower or zero. I am aware that the EPA has been consistent in mentioning this and it was in the previous draft.
I am sure the BLM will be asked “why make an emergency decision on a model that may not accurately portray the risks to the public?”
The basis for this decision is the models depiction that most of the activities exceed the acceptable risk range of 1 in 10,000. Any thoughts on a response? The EPA’s report still reflects their position regarding the risk assessment, which was “uncertainty or perhaps zero.”

The EPA has not been very forthcoming with my FOIA requests for information regarding their communications between the EPA and BLM regarding the CCMA.

My investigation shows the BLM severely sabotaged the EPA’s dust sampling test in September of 2005. Also the BLM was in contact with the EPA throughout the study and knew the EPA’s opinion regarding the risk was “uncertainty and perhaps zero” not supporting an emergency closure. After the final EPA draft was provided to the BLM, the BLM convinced the EPA to change the wording to support an emergency then permanent closure of the Clear Creek Management Area.

I also learned through reading the emails the BLM met with you and your staff prior to the closure to garner your support. I believe you as was the rest of the public were misled by the BLM.
Congressman Farr, the people need your help in this matter.
Respectfully,
Ken Deeg
Timekeepers MC, Friend of Clear Creek Management Area
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Old 05-10-2015, 06:50 AM   #12
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I hope some of you have contacted your congressperson, and I hope that included Zoe Lofgren, because I am going to go visit and see if this make it on their list of important items...
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Old 07-18-2015, 10:15 AM   #13
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according to
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-...ouse-bill/1838

the bill was introduced 4/16/15
and went to the Subcommittee on Federal Lands on 5/7/15

If we could all ask our congresspersons what the delay is it would be good.
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Old 09-22-2015, 05:53 PM   #14
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I just sent this to Zoe Lofren, my congressperson:

Clear Creek Management Area is an issue I have been discussing with your office since the “emergency” closure in 2008. No one has seen it worthwhile to investigate this illegal action by the Bureau of Land Management and the millions of dollars wasted in destroying the existing infrastructure and millions of dollars of lost revenue to local economies.

I am involved with several groups (AMA, BRC, SBR, barf, etc) which uses areas such as these. We are thousands of voters. We are millions of dollars of economic impact.

Over the years I have briefed your office on various aspects of this issue. The closure is based on misinformation and possibly on fraud. Actions by the BLM could be considered criminal.

This is a summary prepared by one of my friends:
“Representatives Sam Farr, David Valadao and Jeff Denham sponsor H.R. 1838 which would designate 75,000 acres of Federal land in San Benito and Fresno Counties in California as the Clear Creek National Recreation Area (NRA) and would ensure access for the responsible use of off-highway vehicles (OHV) in the area into the future as well as designate 21,000 acres as the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness (the area is currently being managed similarly to a designated wilderness area).

Background:
Clear Creek was closed in 2008 based on a questionable safety rationale related to exposure to asbestos. Subsequently the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission commissioned an independent risk assessment study which concluded that management and operational strategies could be effectively employed in the area to allow OHV use without exposing the public to unacceptable risks. This legislation would guarantee that moving forward, the area will be managed in such a way as to provide for all sorts of legitimate and responsible recreation, while also providing for the safety of all of the area’s visitors. Further H.R. 1838 would implement a user fee program for the area that will provide for the management and improvement of the NRA.
H.R. 1838 has the endorsement of a broad array of local OHV organizations, businesses and enthusiasts. This local support is possible not only because this legislation would reopen the popular OHV area, but also because diverse constituencies were consulted to develop a land use bill that could attract a wide range of support.”

Me again: as I have requested previously, please support this legislation. I will stop by in the the next few day to ask your staff of your position.
The amazing thing is, this is a wonderful area being denied to the public for no legitimate reason. We are being denied access, and the BLM is suppressing prosperity. It is amazingly unjust. Please help.

Thank you,

“Butch”, homeowner, voter, motorcyclist, activist

Can you guys do the same?

BRC ARRA thing:
Action Alert
Support Legislation to Reopen an Important OHV Area in CA

blah bla blah, the same thing i have sent to Lofgren...

[​IMG]Take Action

Americans for Responsible Recreational Access
2120 L Street, N.W., Suite 850, Washington, D. C. 20037
webmaster@arra-access.com
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Old 10-06-2015, 07:28 AM   #15
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Anna Eschoo's reply to me:

Thank you for contacting me about H.R. 1838, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act. I welcome your thoughts on this legislation.

I fully support the right of off-highway vehicle enthusiasts to utilize America's federal lands in a responsible manner, provided that usage takes environmental and public health concerns into account. As you know, the CCMA is located on one of the largest naturally occurring asbestos deposits in the world—and while I certainly understand the tremendous recreational value of this area for riders, rock collectors, hikers, hunters, campers, and botanists, it's also important to ensure that its usage does not lead to dangerously high levels of asbestos exposure.

In the past, CCMA access has been restricted during the driest part of the year when recreation is most likely to produce airborne asbestos fibers. H.R. 1838 would instruct the Secretary of the Interior to produce a comprehensive management plan for the CCMA within two years, an idea I think is meritorious.

This legislation has been referred to the House Natural Resources Committee, where it is awaiting further action. Should it come before me in the full House, your important thoughts will certainly inform my vote.

Thank you again for writing to me, and if you have any other questions or comments, let me hear from you. I value what my constituents say to me, and I always need your thoughts and benefit from your ideas.

Most gratefully,
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