News bytes, Issue 121 - BLM California

(Note: There is much of interest in this issue; no matter what your facet of resource providing or recreation -- or where you live -- there's important reading below.)

August 14, 2003


News.bytes A publication of Bureau of Land Management in California


"BLM Reviews OHV Desert Recreation Fee Program" (The Daily Independent, 08/14/2003) The Bureau of Land Management's California Desert District continues to evaluate its fee demonstration program to include initiating or increasing fees at certain popular desert recreation sites.

OHV Vehicle Riding (BLM California Web Site)

"Off-roaders irate over new fees" (Daily Bulletin, 08/09/2003) Off-road vehicle buffs are fuming over a federal agency's plans to charge user fees at four popular recreation sites in the High Desert.,1674,203%257E21481%257E1560252,00.html 

"High Desert fee irks off-roaders" (San Bernardino County Sun, 08/08/2003) "Off-road vehicle buffs are fuming over a federal agency's plans to charge a user fee at four popular recreation sites in the High Desert." Users say the fee is double taxation. BLM spokesperson says charging fee was a tough decision, made only to help cover a budget shortfall.,1413,208%257E12588%257E1558956,00.html

"BLM says off-roading in Imperial Sand Dunes will cost more this fall" (Yuma Sun, 08/07/2003) "It's going to cost more for off-roaders to spin their wheels in the Imperial Sand Dunes this upcoming season, according to a spokeswoman for the Bureau of Land Management ... said sometime in the next few weeks the agency will finalize a new program that will raises fees in the dunes starting in October." Amount of increase is not yet known.

PHOTO ALBUM: "Wild & Scenic Rivers"

Wild and Scenic Rivers are rivers or sections of rivers that are free-flowing and possess at least one outstanding value such as scenic, recreational, geological, fish, wildlife, historic, cultural, or other similar features.

BLM has 77 miles of inholdings along six wild and scenic rivers.


Subtitled: "Mining and economic development in Gold Rush California." Among the topics given a fresh interpretation are the relationship between technology and society; the role of business in mining; the environmental impact from mining and the sudden increase in California's population; the influence of the Gold Rush on agriculture, manufacturing, banking, and transportation; and its impact on the peoples and economies of Latin America, Europe and Asia.


"Dinner held for local appointed to DAC" (The Daily Independent, 08/13/2003) A dinner was held recently to recognize the appointment of Ron Schiller to the Bureau of Land Management's Desert Advisory Council.

"BLM seeking nominations for advisory council" (The Daily Independent, 08/13/2003) The Bureau of Land Management is seeking nominations for qualified people to serve on BLM's California Desert District Advisory Council for the 2004-06 term. Applications must be received by Friday, Aug. 29.

Notice of Public Meeting (Federal Register Notice)

The Next Meeting for the California Desert District Advisory Council will take place September 19-20, 2003, at the Kerr McGee Center in Ridgecrest, CA. The Council will discuss a variety of agenda topics on Friday, September 19. Saturday, September 20 will include a briefing and overview of the Sustaining Working Landscapes initiative and an opportunity to receive public comments.


"Mining claims/sites filing due on or before Sept. 1" (BLM California Web Site) Letters have been mailed to thousands of small-claims miners affected, but a reminder: on or before 9/1/03, small miners must either pay the 2004 Maintenance Fee of $100 per claim, mill site and/or tunnel site OR file a 2004 Maintenance Fee Waiver Certification, Form 3830-2 (commonly referred to as a Small Miner's Waiver). A PDF version of the form is available online to print out and fill in.

"San Gorgonio Wilderness" (BLM California Web Site) The San Gorgonio Wilderness encompasses 37,980 acres and is a part of the eastern slope of the San Bernardino Mountains. With an elevation range from 2,300 to 5,500 feet, the topography in this area rapidly changes from low rolling foothills and canyons to steep, rugged

"Wind Energy in the San Gorgonio Pass Area" (BLM California Web Site)

The San Gorgonio Pass area is very suitable for wind energy development due to steady westerly winds in this area that are funneled between the San Jacinto and San Bernardino Mountain Ranges. This constriction results in an acceleration of wind velocity to speeds suitable for wind energy development.


"Our opinion: This is Congressional?" (Imperial Valley Press, 08/04/2003) EDITORIAL: Criticizes appearance of unfairness, says "congressional hearing" in San Diego on Imperial Sand Dunes should not be called that. Says it excludes even the local congressman, "[a]nd from what he have heard, fairness is not exactly being sought at this shindig."


"Coast Dairies plan hits snag" (Santa Cruz Sentinel, 08/07/2003) A trust that bought the 7,000-acre Coast Dairies property five years ago with an eye toward placing it in public hands is scrambling to find a new taker for part of the property. After seeing the final management plan, BLM determined it did not have legal authority to manage farmland that included tenant housing. BLM is continuing its work on the uplands portion of the property that does not include the farmland.

"Program exposes students to desert life" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 08/08/2003) " By taking a field trip to the Calico Early Man site, students in a new junior naturalist certification program will experience a true archeological dig firsthand...." BLM's Barstow Field Office is a partner in the Desert Discovery Center that will run the program. The experience fits with California's state standards that teachers must follow in classrooms. The Center will also offer after-school and weekend sessions for children and adults.,89649

"BLM to host public meeting, tour to discuss land use planning" (BLM California news release, 08/12/2003) The public meeting is Wednesday, Aug. 13, at 6 p.m. at the BLM Eagle Lake Field Office, 2950 Riverside Dr., Susanville. Following introductory comments, the BLM staff will host an open house meeting where anyone interested can ask questions about the planning process and provide comments on issues that should be addressed in new land use plans.

"New BLM office opening historic" (Mammoth Times, 08/07/2003) "The grand opening this past Wednesday of the new Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management office building was more than just another "ribbon-cutting," it marked a historic partnership between two sovereign nations - the US. government and the Bishop Paiute Tribe."

"Filling of reservoir begins" (San Diego Union-Tribune, 08/07/2003) "Water began flowing yesterday into the first reservoir to be built in the county in nearly 50 years." The dam will store water for use in San Diego County. "The Olivenhain district acquired much of the land for the project from the federal Bureau of Land Management and built the Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve to help compensate for the environmental impact the dam would cause."

"Sacramento River Rail Trail will be closed for improvements" (BLM California news release, 08/12/2003) The Sacramento River Rail Trail between the Keswick Boat Launch and Shasta Dam will be closed from Thursday, Aug. 14 through Saturday, Aug. 30, for completion of trail improvements.

"Developers to Seek State's OK of High Desert cow-power plan" (San Bernardino County Sun, 08/11/2003) If a proposed energy complex at Harper Dry Lake gets the green light, electricity will be generated from cow manure and the sun.,1413,208%257E12588%257E1565317,00.html?search=filter

"BLM Issues New Policies Aimed at Ensuring Timely Development of Oil and Gas Resources in Environmentally Sound Manner" (BLM California news release, 08/07/2003) As part of its implementation of President Bush's National Energy Policy, the Bureau of Land Management has issued new policies aimed at reducing or eliminating impediments to oil and gas leasing on BLM-managed lands. The policies, which take effect immediately, instruct BLM land-use planners to evaluate the necessity of current constraints on energy development in high-potential oil and gas areas.


08/20/2003 - Scoping meeting for Northeast California and Northwest Nevada land use plan Alturas

08/27/2003 - Scoping meeting for Northeast California and Northwest Nevada land use plan Redding

08/28/2003 - Scoping meeting for Northeast California and Northwest Nevada land use plan Reno

08/16/2003 - Field tour - Northeast California and Northwest Nevada land use planning Susanville

08/23/2003 - Field tour - Northeast California and Northwest Nevada land use planning Alturas

08/26/2003 - South Yuba River planning meeting Grass Valley

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News.bytes published by Bureau of Land Management California State Office 2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834 Sacramento, Ca 95825 916-978-4600