11 Apr 2010, 12:18pm
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Siskiyou County Supervisors call again for national monument coordination

By David Smith, Siskiyou Daily News, Apr 09, 2010 [here]

Yreka, Calif. — Filling the room at Tuesday’s Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors meeting were a number of opponents to a possible large change to federal lands in Siskiyou County, with the board suspecting that an expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument into California is being considered by the United States Department of the Interior.

An internal draft recently leaked to the public states, “In 2000, Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument was established to protect the extraordinary biodiversity and vegetation found in southwestern Oregon.

“Unfortunately, because of political constraints, the Monument’s southern boundary was artificially established at the California State line. Therefore the Monument does not include the ecologically important Klamath River tributaries and cuts out sections of important eco-regions from protection.”

Also noted is that the expansion could connect the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument with the proposed Siskiyou Crest National Monument. “Expansions on the Oregon side may also be worth consideration,” the draft states.

Up for consideration by the board was a resolution affirming the county’s policy regarding a prior resolution in which the board stated that “Monument proposals must be brought before the Board of Supervisors at the earliest opportunity to allow the County to have sufficient input on the designation.”

Board Chair Marcia Armstrong expressed concern that the expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou monument could be performed as part of the American Antiquities Act of 1906, which authorizes the President of the United States “to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments.”

Armstrong stated that restrictions in declared national monuments can include restrictions on mining, timber harvest and road travel.

Comments from the public also covered a wide range of concerns, including the possible effects on hunting and fishing activities, private land within the monument boundaries, wildfire suppression and the county’s economy.

All of the commenters supported the county’s resolution and stated opposition to the expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou monument. …

The resolution states that it is resolved “that the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors [sic] demand that the Secretary of the Interior and any other responsible federal officials associated with the consideration of National Monuments in Siskiyou County immediately coordinate with Siskiyou County regarding these proposals; and … that until such time as coordination occurs and Siskiyou County becomes favorably disposed toward the designations, the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors is opposed to expansion of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument into Siskiyou County and the creation of the Siskyou Crest National Monument.” …

[W]ith the addition of the line: “WHEREAS, a substantial portion of federal lands in Siskiyou County is already set aside as Wilderness, Roadless Areas, Late Successional Reserves and other special designations for exceptional protection of the environment,” [the resolution] passed unanimously. …

The Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument itself was declared by President Bill Clinton on June 9, 2000, utilizing the antiquities act.

The proclamation states that the commercial harvest of timber or other vegetative material is prohibited, “except when part of an authorized science-based ecological restoration project is aimed at meeting protection and old growth enhancement objectives.” Also prohibited by the proclamation is off-road vehicle travel. … [more]



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