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Old October 30th, 2008, 08:13 PM   #1
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Default Tellico Lawsuit Dismissed - Forest Service To Release New Plan

TELLICO LAWSUIT DISMISSED - FOREST SERVICE TO RELEASE NEW PLAN

October 30, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Greg Mumm 208-244-2112
Carla Boucher 757-546-7969

Court papers filed today indicate that the lawsuit brought by motorized recreation advocates against the US Forest Service over the Upper Tellico Off-Highway Vehicle Area will be voluntarily dismissed. The case was filed by the BlueRibbon Coalition, United Four Wheel Drive Associations, and Southern Four Wheel Drive Association and challenged temporary closure orders issued by the Forest Service in December 2007. According to a stipulation entered by all parties to the case, it is the Forest Service's "stated intention to complete a public planning process and announce a new decision in the near future which will likely substantially impact or change the interim orders referenced in the complaint..." The Forest has provided proposed management alternatives and received comments through July 2008, on the new plan from the recreation organizations and many others interested in Tellico management.

"We are pleased that the Forest Service has made active management of Tellico a high priority, and that this planning process seems to have avoided some of the diversions that have delayed similar decisions in other areas," observed Jay Bird, immediate Past President of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association. "Under these circumstances, and mindful of the desire for both Forest Service personnel and recreational enthusiasts to focus on the new decision and future management, we agreed that dismissing this action was the right thing to do," Bird concluded.

The dismissal is without prejudice, meaning that these same organizations or other interested parties could file administrative appeals or lawsuits challenging the ultimate outcome of the new planning process. Further information about the plaintiff organizations, including information about the ongoing planning process at Tellico and developments in other matters, can be found as indicated below.

# # #

The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible recreation, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. It represents over 10,000 individual members and 1,200 organization and business members, for a combined total of over 600,000 recreationists nationwide. 1-800-258-3742. www.sharetrails.org

United Four Wheel Drive Associations is an international organization comprised of four wheel drive enthusiasts, clubs, associations, and businesses dedicated to providing community services around the world, education in responsible land use and safe vehicle operation, and protection of our natural resources through conservation practices. 1-800-448-3932. www.ufwda.org <http://www.ufwda.org>

Southern Four Wheel Drive Association (SFWDA) was founded in 1987 to promote responsible land use and to keep public lands accessible for motorized recreation. Since the formation of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, the focus and mission is to promote responsible land use and to help keep public lands open for motorized recreation. For more information on the activities and accomplishments of Southern Four Wheel Drive Association, please visit www.sfwda.org <http://www.sfwda.org> or contact us at 1483 N. Mt. Juliet Road, PMB # 222, Mt. Juliet, TN 37122
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Old October 30th, 2008, 08:25 PM   #2
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In about two weeks we should get the official decision on what proposal they are going with. Then they will be asking for another letter writing blitz.
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Old October 30th, 2008, 09:46 PM   #3
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So does this sort of mean that they listened and plan to offer up something that might appeal to us?
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Old October 30th, 2008, 10:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiterhino View Post
So does this sort of mean that they listened and plan to offer up something that might appeal to us?
Hope so, will see when the release it. Problem is, the last time they opened it up for public opinion, ORV users only sent in 500 letters, vastly outnumbered by TU and their friends.

Wonder how many will take a few minutes to write or email this time? Even if we provide a link that makes it easy.
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