The RS2477 Threat

Lands at Risk

Threats to
Private Property



Act Now!




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Norton, in Parting Shot, Attempts to Hand Control over Federal Lands to the States

The new policy would make it easier for states or counties to promote highway construction on public lands even though the claims generally have little connection to legitimate transportation needs, and would undermine protection for our nation's public lands. Every place where there has ever been a cow track, old mining track, or off-road vehicle path could be at risk.

Here's the Norton Policy itself.

Read a question-and-answer sheet.

Visit the The Wilderness Society for extensive commentary and more links, Earthjustice for a statement and analysis, and the Department of the Interior's press release.

Read an Associated Press story from March 21, 2006.

Read an account in the Salt Lake Tribune from March 22, 2006.

And a longer version in the San Diego Tribune, same date.

Los Angeles Times, March 23, 2006.

Fairbanks News-Miner, March 23, 2006

Anchorage Daily News, March 23, 2006

The Land Letter (affiliated with Greenwire), March 23, 2006

The Craig Daily Press, March 23, 2006

Deseret Morning News, March 23, 2006

Salt Lake Tribune, March 27, 2006

Cortez Journal, March 28, 2006

The Associated Press story turned up on MSNBC on March 24, 2006



Editorials Criticize the Giveaway

Baltimore Sun, March 24, 2006

Denver Post, March 25, 2006

Grand Junction Sentinel, March 26, 2006

Sacramento Bee, March 29, 2006

Salt Lake Tribune, April 28, 2006


And an Op-Ed Criticizes a Critical Editorial

In the Salt Lake Tribune, May 20, 2006


Environmentalists Appeal to the Senate

Read the letter sent in late May.

Six Senators Send a Letter to Interior

Read the letter from Sens. Feinstein, Cantwell, Durbin, Bingaman, Salazar, and Boxer.

Read an account in the Salt Lake Tribune April 26, 2006.


Interior Adds its Spin

Enjoy particularly the before and after photograph.

And letters in the Baltimore Sun and the Denver Post.


Sierra Club Urges Action

Take action here.

Agencies Begin Implementing the Norton Policy.

On May 26, 2006, BLM issued four new guidance documents to implement the Norton Policy.  The guidance includes an "Instruction Memo" (BLM No. 2006-159) on how the agency will perform non-binding determinations of validity on RS 2477 claims.  The guidance has two attachments, the first the Norton Policy itself; the second a step-by-step description of the process the agency will take in making such determinations. 

 A second "Instruction Memo" (BLM No. 2006-161) deals with what the agency must do when a county wants to build "improvements" to a claimed RS 2477 route. 

 Notably absent from the BLM memos is anything that addresses how the agency will deal with claims that threaten designated wilderness and wilderness study areas (required by the Norton Policy) as well as how the agency will protect tribal land (also required by the Norton Policy).

Off-Roaders Downplay Their Response

The Blue Ribbon Coalition, the mouthpiece of the off-road vehicle industry and users, largely feigned indifference to the Norton policy in its June 2006 magazine.


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