Wilderness Groups Pressure Colorado Governor on Colorado Roadless Rule
The ups and downs of the Colorado Roadless Rule (CRR) process stretching over 3 years are close to producing a tangible result. COHVCO, Colorado Trail Preservation Alliance and the BlueRibbon Coalition have followed this process - with a magnifying glass - and have done an excellent job of protecting motorized interests.
Recently, radical environmental groups have put pressure on Colorado Governor Ritter to make changes in the Rule, despite that fact that it was crafted using over 100,000 comments from individuals and organizations, and hundreds of public meetings around the State. The fact that the Colorado Rule enjoys support from a wide range of stakeholders across Colorado won't stop the Wilderness activist from trying to slip in a back-room deal during the change of Administrations.
In October, I attended a meeting of the Roadless Area Conservation National Advisory Committee (RACNAC) in Salt Lake City. It was my impression that the environmental community may have been buying time, hoping to stop the Colorado Rule in the event that Senator Obama was elected President. My impression seems to have been proven correct, as there has been a recent notice of an extension that allows the next administration to "review" the CRR. The Governor's representatives to that meeting strongly supported the Colorado Rule.
Of further concern is that the motorized public cannot, at this time, support the specific language of the Final Rule because we don't have it yet. This creates the difficult situation of not being able to weigh in directly upon the argument except to support the proposed Rule, which we have already done.