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AARON1

NW FOREST PASS

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If you use Alpine Toms scans you are HURTING the chances of defeating this program.

 

Car parked at trailhead without pass VOTES NO

 

Car parked at trailhead with Tom's fake pass VOTES YES

 

Don't be hoser. Don't vote YES.

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betty you are wrong.....

 

a pass tha is paid for is a yes vote...

 

a car with a fake non paid for pass is a scam

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Since this issue is getting some traction again (excellent post Ms Merriman) I thought I'd share a little correspondence I've had with the Forest service.

 

Off White wrote:

quote:

Regarding your page at
I have a few questions you did not ask or provide answers for in your FAQ:

 

1: Do you in fact count every pass purchased as an endorsement of the fee demo program? This is widely bandied about as fact, and you need to address it. If you don't, I can only assume that you are in fact engaged in this fraudulent statistical game.

 

2: Are educational or spiritual uses of of the national forests exempt from user fees? If so, how does one establish this exemption?

 

3: If the Forest Service collects fees from logging and mining users, why are these fees often insufficient to cover costs? The Forest Service is widely perceived as providing industrial subsidies in the form of money losing timber sales and below market value land leases. Your statement in the FAQ that all users are charged fees disingenuously evades answering the real question, why aren't the profit making high impact uses of the National Forests charged enough to cover costs in all cases? If you are going to assert that the NFS never loses money in timber sales, you must provide credible documentation rather than a bland unsupported assertion.

and the reply I received:

quote:

Dear Mr. White,

 

Thanks for your questions related to the Forest fee website that you sent

us a couple weeks ago. I have been in the field and am just catching up

to my e-mail.

Your first question related to counting passes as and endorsement of the

rec fee demo program is not something that we have every considered on the

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. A pass sold is a pass sold and

that's all. No one I know considers the sale of a pass as an endorsement

of the program.

 

Qeustion two. An administrative pass is available for accredited school

groups for the day of their field trip to a fee site.

No exemeption is available for "spritual uses"

 

On your third question related to below cost sales, I know that below costs

sales are an issue of national scope. I am not aware that the Forest

Service has claimed that it covers all its costs for each individual timber

sale. It may be that in aggregate all costs are covered. I'm sure the

argument on this issue will go on for many years. However, I can say that

there are many reasons the agency may sell federal timber where all costs

are not covered. A current example in the media, would relate to fuel

reduction through the removal of small diameter trees which have high costs

for removal and also relatively low market value.

 

As your questions relates to fee demo, the budget that is allocated to the

Forest Service from Congress has many line items. Those items related to

timber sale preparation and admistration are completely separate from those

funds targeted for recreation. Congress has decided that some of the

operation and maintenance of recreation facitlities should be borne by the

users of those facilities and not the population at large. Maintaining

recreation facilities such as trailhead toilets and trails is not free.

The cost for an average mile of trail maintenance on the Forest is about

$1,000 per mile per year. Without the funds available from the NW Forest

Pass, maintenance of these facilities on the Forest would decline

dramatically.

 

There may be a better way to pay for these services than rec fee demo, but

there is not currently any other game in town. If you have ideas on how

recreation services can be funded in the national forests writing your

elected representatives is the way to go.

 

If you have an issue with how the Forest is prioritizing our maintenance

program, then l am all ears.

 

Thanks again for writing.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Gary Paull

Wilderness & Trails Coordinator

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie NF

phone: 425-744-3407

fax: 425-744-3255

gpaull@fs.fed.us


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Nice response. I don't know Gary personally, but a lot of people I know do, and he is definitely one of the good guys.

 

I still think the Forest Pass sucks.

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I agree with Allison. Gary is "one of the good guys" in the sense that I think he actually believes in stewardship and he is very supportive of non-motorized recreational use. He is definitely a breed apart from, say, the district ranger in Leavenworth.

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I think that guy gave you a pretty honest answer. I'm sure some of the FS people are in a tough spot having to enforce something they may not agree with. Remember that most of these people are in the FS because of their love for the outdoors and not the million dollar signing bonuses and lucrative endorsement contracts.

 

The one arguement I really have a problem with is this..

 

quote:

Congress has decided that some of the

operation and maintenance of recreation facitlities should be borne by the

users of those facilities and not the population at large.

I think one of the best examples of how this arguement falls flat are some of the small draw bridges in the Seattle area like Montlake. How much does this bridge cost to operate versus the number of boats that use it, remembering the fact that anyone who has a boat that big needs the bridge opened is probably fairly well off. You can make up examples of these types of things all day long, like the rich guy with the boat could argue that why should his tax dollars subsidize my bus ride to work that a large percentage of the population doesn't use. And that's exactly point, our tax dollars are used for things that you may not support or use.

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quote:

Originally posted by jon:

And that's exactly point, our tax dollars are used for things that you may not support or use.

You socialist!

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Yah, it seemed like an okay response, and he was very calm with my somewhat bristly presentation. I found his assertion that a pass bought is just that, and nothing more to be very interesting and relevant given the current discussion here. It could be true, and the idea that purchasing a pass is counted as an endorsement is only urban myth, or it may be that it is a tactic used by those much much higher in the service. If anyone has any knowledge of this I'd love to hear it. It also does seem to put to bed the hope that the "spiritual purposes" loophole exists (it did not work for me 3 years ago in the Teanaway).

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A friend who lurks on this site is in the midst of huge court battle over this thing. Maybe he'll post.

 

I just got another ticket after coming out from prussik two days ago. I even put all my science teacher fieldwork stuff on my dashboard.- educational exemption?

leavenworth rangers didn' t give a flying f*!#

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Off -

Those "urban myths" often have a basis in reality. I bet that somebody, somewhere, probably did suggest that sales show endorsement. And we certainly want to continue to make noise about this program while, in my opinion, recognizing that funding priorities are the real issue here -- not just our own personal interest in having free access to something we enjoy.

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Jens-

Officer Intout certainly doesn't give a rat's ass. And it seems that his superior in Wenatchee, and the district ranger in Leavenworth support him in this (they like his aggressive enforcement style and don't really care much for climbers anyway). If you want to fight the ticket, they'll make you drive to Yakima at least twice and from what I hear you stand about 0% chance of beating it.

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quote:

Originally posted by mattp:

Those "urban myths" often have a basis in reality.

Careful Matt, next thing you know Trask will be posting photograhic evidence to prove the old "poodle in the microwave" story. I agree we've got to keep up the pressure, and I certainly wholeheartedly believed the pass counting story because it just sounds so plausible, like the way things really work.

 

and, as a final tangential off-topic excuse to use the over-used Band of Graemlins just because its coming out of my computer speakers right this moment and somehow ties into some other thread going on about dog style...

 

[rockband] "Now I wanna be your dog, so C'MON"

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I'm a bit late in this thread, but followed it with interest. I, like many of you, got the $50 ticket in the Teanaway... I was in a quandry of how to handle it, ignore it, pay it, write a letter, plead not guilty, hope they take me to court, etc... I am still not sure how I feel about it and haven't done anything with it yet. I asked around and was given the following weblinks. They are pretty interesting.

 

http://www.wildwilderness.org/docs/tips.htm

 

http://www.antifee.bizhosting.com/

http://www.wildwilderness.org/docs/siart.htm

 

http://tom-morrow-land.com/feedemocase.html

http://www.wildwilderness.org/docs/yost.htm

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The FS claims that money raised from these things will be re-directed to the areas that they are used. I've often wondered how this could possibly be true. If I buy mine from REI or wherever, how do they know that I parked at the TH for Shuksan, Whitehorse, Blue lake or anywhere else for that matter. They would need to at least survey the number of cars parked with and w/o passes to attempt to direct funds at the most heavily used areas. We need the LAWGODDESS to take this on for us! Come on sweetheart, what do you say?

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NWFP are sponsored by the friendly neighborhood REI.

 

Another reason to boycott them. The tickets suck and park away from the signs more than a 1/4 mile distant from them and you are legal.

 

Otherwise you get tickets. [Mad]

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quote:

Originally posted by Off White:

quote:

Dear Mr. White,

Congress has decided that some of the

operation and maintenance of recreation facitlities should be borne by the

users of those facilities and not the population at large. Maintaining

recreation facilities such as trailhead toilets and trails is not free.

 

Gary Paull

Wilderness & Trails Coordinator

Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie NF

phone: 425-744-3407

fax: 425-744-3255

gpaull@fs.fed.us



Hello,

This is Mrs. R,

 

If this is all the forest service is interested in then why are corporate interests working overtime for fee demo. Sounds good, but doesn't quite ring true. Here's an excerpt from the end of a forest service document www.fs.fed.us/r6/rogue/trl_park_fee.html about the Rogue River National Forest.

 

"The Forest Service's recreation fee demonstration program was developed in partnership with leading national recreation interests. Its implementation is occurring through a Challenge Cost Share partnership with the American Recreation Coalition (ARC). ARC's efforts will include explanation of the fee program to the recreation industry and recreation enthusiasts, as well as assistance in evaluation of the demonstration projects. For further information on ARC's efforts, contact ARC at 1225 New York Avenue NW, Washington, D.C. 20005 or ARC@funoutdoors.com"

 

Does this sound like maintaining

recreation facilities such as trailhead toilets and trails?

 

Sounds alittle fishy to me.

Like any business venture, the FS is working overtime to provide more improvements on Public lands, more roads and more exploitation. Nothing can come of this but exploitation and diminishing wild lands. It's really not about saving the FS's ass. It's about preserving our public lands. Once fees are implemented, then our lands are no longer public. It's outrageous to be charged to take your children for a walk on the public lands in our country. I'm feeling pretty unAmerican about this time.

 

I've been unable to find this 'Challenge Cost Share Partnership' yet. So if you find it before me let me know the address.

 

Also, I was reading last night that 9/30/02 is the deadline for the last extension on fee demo. Don't quote me on this, I don't have the source in front of me. Write Congress.

 

Wouldn't it be great to fill up Snow Creek Parking lot, Colchuck/Stuart Parking lot with protesters out there hiking/climbing/recreating without passes. No room for those willing to pay. I'm for it; I'm willing to fight for this one. There's way too much at stake.

 

Betty Merriman

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I agree with your thumbnail analysis. I'm against it if companies like Disney, Coleman, and Yahama are for it -- there is no way I could believe they have non-motorized recreation or preservation of wild lands or any kind of long-term resource management among their priorities.

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quote:

Originally posted by jon:

 

The one arguement I really have a problem with is this..

 

I think one of the best examples of how this arguement falls flat are some of the small draw bridges in the Seattle area like Montlake. How much does this bridge cost to operate versus the number of boats that use it, remembering the fact that anyone who has a boat that big needs the bridge opened is probably fairly well off. You can make up examples of these types of things all day long, like the rich guy with the boat could argue that why should his tax dollars subsidize my bus ride to work that a large percentage of the population doesn't use. And that's exactly point, our tax dollars are used for things that you may not support or use.

Jon, while I agree with you in spirit, I must say that I have the Fremont bridge opened several times a week to bring a $5000 sailboat under it. So the thing costs as much as a used car, and we pay license tabs, which in turn help to pay for the bridge tenders etc.

 

[ 08-30-2002, 02:38 PM: Message edited by: allison ]

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Sorry to break your heart allison but your boat tab revenue is hardly enough to cover the water cops let alone million dollar drawbridges, which actually reinforces my arguement. How can a $20 trail pass pay for the Forest Service to maintain trails and cans when the fee itself can not even cover the cost of collecting and enforcing the fee?

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My main point was that while you are waiting in traffic AGAIN while the bridge goes up, don't assume it's some rich dude on the boat. I'd say the majority of the boats I see around here that raise the bridges are owned by people like you and me. Maybe even actually me, I'm considering.....

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Jesus christ allsion I don't care about the boats and the bridges it doesn't bother me that when I'm standing by the bridge waiting for it to close at 3pm on a Wednesday because some guy with a 80 foot mast needs to get through, good for him that he can afford a boat that big and go sailing while I'm working. That kind of shit doesn't bother me. I was just using it as an example for my arguement that tax dollars are often allocated towards specific uses that aid only a small fraction of the tax paying population. In the case of Montake bridge there are probably only a handfull of people who own boats that require there being a bridge there, yet it is still there and maintained and tended. If you noticed I also looked at the counter arguement about why 80 foot mast dude wants his tax money so I can get literally a free ride to work everyday while only a small percentage of the public actually uses it. I think I offered a pretty fair analysis.

 

So how does what your trying to say relate to the fee demo arguement?

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