Print Friendly SENATE JOINT MEMORIAL NO. 105 – US Forest Servce/rule/roadless area
SENATE JOINT MEMORIAL NO. 105
View Daily Data Tracking History
View Bill Text
View Statement of Purpose / Fiscal Impact
Text to be added within a bill has been marked with Bold and
Underline. Text to be removed has been marked with
Strikethrough and Italic. How these codes are actually displayed will
vary based on the browser software you are using.
This sentence is marked with bold and underline to show added text.
This sentence is marked with strikethrough and italic, indicating
text to be removed.
SJM105.........................................by RESOURCES AND ENVIRONMENT
UNITED STATES FOREST SERVICE - Stating findings of the Legislature and
requesting that the United States Forest Service reopen comments on its
rulemaking for protection of remaining roadless areas in the National
02/21 Senate intro - 1st rdg - to printing
02/22 Rpt prt - to Res/Env
03/14 Rpt out - to 10th Ord
03/15 10th ord - ADOPTED - voice vote
Title apvd - to House
03/16 House intro - 1st rdg - to Res/Con
03/22 Rpt out - rec d/p - to 2nd rdg
03/23 2nd rdg - to 3rd rdg
03/31 3rd rdg - ADOPTED - voice vote - to Senate
04/03 To enrol
04/04 Rpt enrol - Pres signed - Sp signed
04/05 To Secretary of State
|||| LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF IDAHO ||||
Fifty-fifth Legislature Second Regular Session - 2000
IN THE SENATE
SENATE JOINT MEMORIAL NO. 105
BY RESOURCES AND ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE
1 A JOINT MEMORIAL
2 TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, THE CHIEF OF THE UNITED STATES FOREST
3 SERVICE, THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES IN
4 CONGRESS ASSEMBLED, AND TO THE CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION REPRESENTING THE
5 STATE OF IDAHO IN THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES.
6 We, your Memorialists, the Senate and the House of Representatives of the
7 State of Idaho assembled in the Second Regular Session of the Fifty-fifth
8 Idaho Legislature, do hereby respectfully represent that:
9 WHEREAS, on October 19, 1999, the United States Forest Service announced a
10 vast "rulemaking process to propose the protection of the remaining roadless
11 areas within the National Forest System." 64 FR 56306. This rulemaking
12 purportedly includes two draft environmental impact statements, at least one
13 set of draft rules, and a draft environmental assessment; and
14 WHEREAS, the Notice of Intent (NOI) solicits comments "on the scope of the
15 analysis that should be conducted" and "on the identification of alternatives
16 to the proposal" that will be set out in this multitude of documents. The NOI
17 then provides prospective commentators with slightly more than sixty days to
18 comment on this enormous and poorly defined proposal. The NOI is an unaccept-
19 able affront to the promise of meaningful public participation that is the
20 centerpiece of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA); and
21 WHEREAS, more than forty million acres of land in the West could be
22 affected by the actions contemplated in the NOI. A permanent moratorium on
23 Forest Service road development will have a devastating impact on timber com-
24 munities in the West. The proposed moratorium will destroy attempts to develop
25 recreational economies in the West and deny access to huge areas of the West
26 to all but the able-bodied. In sum, the moratorium will deny thousands of cit-
27 izens the opportunity to use, enjoy and benefit from the land; and
28 WHEREAS, the process used by the Forest Service to consider such a poten-
29 tially severe decision must reflect absolute fairness and deliberation. The
30 NOI demonstrates neither of those traits. No specific proposals are identi-
31 fied. No preliminary findings are referenced; and
32 WHEREAS, these failures violate one of NEPA's primary objectives of
33 encouraging and facilitating "public involvement in decisions which affect the
34 quality of the human environment." 40 CFR 1500.2(d); and
35 WHEREAS the NOI states that it "initiates the scoping process." 64 FR
36 56307. However, the NOI does not identify "the significant issues related to
37 [the] proposed action," as is required by federal regulations. 40 CFR 1501.7.
38 The NOI does not encourage "the participation of affected federal, state and
39 local agencies" and the regulations implementing NEPA anticipate. 40 CFR
40 1501.7(a)(1); and
41 WHEREAS, the ambiguity and confusion that characterize the NOI are com-
42 pounded by the fact that the comment period is so brief. Title 40 CFR
43 1501.8(b)(1)(i)-(viii) specifically set out considerations that the Forest
44 Service should be using in determining the time limits for soliciting comments
1 on the NOI.
2 "(b) The agency may:
3 (1) Consider the following factors in determining time limits:
4 (i) Potential for environmental harm.
5 (ii) Size of the proposed action.
6 (iii) State of the art of analytic techniques.
7 (iv) Degree of public need for the proposed action, including the
8 consequences of delay.
9 (v) Number of persons and agencies affected.
10 (vi) Degree to which relevant information is known and if not known
11 the time required for obtaining it.
12 (vii) Degree to which the action is controversial.
13 (viii) Other time limits imposed on the agency by law, regulations or
14 executive order."; and
15 WHEREAS, it should be obvious that all of these factors support a careful,
16 deliberate, consideration of the environmental impacts of the proposed perma-
17 nent moratorium. The expedited deadline in the NOI is completely inconsistent
18 with 40 CFR 1501.8(b); and
19 WHEREAS, in an October 28, 1999, letter to forest service managers, Mike
20 Dombeck, Chief of the U.S. Forest Service suggested that the Forest Service is
21 attempting to complete the environmental analysis of a permanent moratorium in
22 a "short time frame." The U.S. Forest Service should not be trying to ramrod a
23 decision that will shut down forty million acres of western lands into "a
24 short time frame." You should be honoring the spirit, not to mention the clear
25 mandate, of NEPA by providing meaningful opportunity for public participation
26 and careful, principled, environmental analysis; and
27 WHEREAS, the closing date for public comments was set for December 20,
28 1999. With decisions on the management of over forty million acres of land in
29 the West at stake, the time is clearly not adequate time for officials to
30 thoroughly review and analyze the proposal, and to provide the Forest Service
31 with informed and substantive comment.
32 NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the members of the Second Regular Ses-
33 sion of the Fifty-fifth Idaho Legislature, the Senate and the House of Repre-
34 sentatives concurring therein, that we respectfully request that the U.S. For-
35 est Service extend the deadline to submit comments on the NOI by one hundred
36 twenty days. An expedited consideration of this request is appreciated.
37 BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Secretary of the Senate be, and she is
38 hereby authorized and directed to forward a copy of this Memorial to the Pres-
39 ident of the United States, the Chief of the United States Forest Service,
40 President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives of
41 Congress, and the congressional delegation representing the State of Idaho in
42 the Congress of the United States.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE
The purpose of this Memorial sends a message to the Congress of the
United States, the President of the United States, and the Chief of the U. S. Forest
Service objecting to the proposed 60 days comment period to comment on an
enormous and poorly defined proposal on protection of the remaining roadless
areas within the National Forest System.
The Forest Service action has been appealed by the Attorney General of
the State of Idaho. The legislative support of this resolution confirms drafting.
None beyond the cost of legislation
Name: Sen. Marguerite McLaughlin 332-1355
Sen. Judi Danielson 332-1308
Sen. Shawn Keough 332-1340
Rep. Charles Cuddy 334-1158
Rep. June Judd 334-1134
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE/FISCAL NOTE SJM 10