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Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Friday, March 16th, 2012.

Regarding the NOAA Coho Recovery Plan

Dr. Richard Gierak, Federal gov & land grabs, Klamath River & Dams, Salmon and fish

Regarding the NOAA?Coho Recovery Plan – Yreka, CA – Siskiyou Daily News

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/opinions/letters_to_the_editor/x299884701/Regarding-the-NOAA-Coho-Recovery-Plan

 PNP comment: I believe Dr. Gierak knows what he is talking about.  I have watched him for 15 years as he has tediously gathered information on coho and other fish in our region. At this point, I have little trust in what the govmunt officials state. Many seem to only have book learnin’ and little practical experience to prove their science is true science. — Editor Liz Bowen

By Dr. Richard Gierak

Siskiyou Daily News

Letter to the Editor

March 16, 2012

Klamath River, Calif. — I find it of interest that on the DVD handed out at the NOAA meeting regarding the NOAA Coho Recovery Plan, they have placed a picture of a Yellow Perch.

Perhaps it is difficult to understand that both Iron Gate and Copco reservoirs have been evaluated and said to contain biomass quantities of Yellow Perch and Yellow Crappie by California Fish & Game in 2010. Should these two species be allowed to have access to present salmon spawning grounds they would consume all of the salmon eggs laid and the viability of sustaining salmon runs will likely be terminated within five years. The entire premise of removing the dams to allow salmon to return to “historic” spawning grounds was based on conditions prior to 1918. At that time there were no perch or crappie to feed upon the spawning salmon eggs. Yellow Perch are a real nemesis to salmon of any type by consuming their eggs and fingerlings as food. Should the dam be breached the Yellow Perch will decimate any and all salmon eggs and fingerlings to feed their ravenous appetites. This sounds like a great plan to recover salmon populations in the Klamath Basin. Thank you NMFS.

Are we to assume that the “experts” from NMFS do not realize what they have done, or, is it a slap in the face assuming that the public is ignorant or stupid? Amidst the multiple scientific reasons to not remove the dams on the Klamath, this one is not even considered in their reports. The primary reason for not considering the Coho Recovery Plan is that there are no documents or historical references to coho being indigenous to the Klamath Basin prior to plantings in 1895. Under the Federal Endangered Species Act there is no provision to list a non-indigenous species. NMFS and NOAA should abandon any more expenditure of our money on a species that legally cannot be listed in the Klamath Basin.

Editor’s note: NOAA Coho Recovery Plan Coordinator Julie Weeder confirmed that the fish pictured on the DVD is a coho salmon. “The species the image most resembles is juvenile chinook, but this is not a chinook because of the coloration of the leading edge of the fins and the coloration on the top of the fish,” Weeder said. “There is some superficial similarity between juvenile salmon and yellow perch (i.e. there are dark vertical stripes on the sides), however there are also clear differences (i.e. shapes of the dorsal and adipose fins on the top of the fish).”

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
NOTE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, any copyrighted
material herein is distributed without profit or payment to those who have
expressed a prior interest in receiving this information for non-profit
research and educational purposes only. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

This information and much more that you need to know about the ESA,
the Klamath River Basin, and private property rights can be found at The
Klamath Bucket Brigade’s web site – http://klamathbucketbrigade.org/index.html
please visit today.

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Is The Fire Tax Unconstitutional?

Assemblyman/Senator Jim Nielsen, Fire Fees

Is The Fire Tax Unconstitutional?

Recent issues of Budget Fact Check have examined whether the Governor’s proposed tax increase would benefit priorities like education and higher education.

This issue of Budget Fact Check spotlights state budget funding for one of government’s most important responsibilities – fire protection.

The newly-enacted $150 fire tax will be imposed on residents living in State Responsibility Areas to fund CalFire.  Its adoption has been a controversial move both politically and legally.  The outcome of the political debate and expected legal challenges could significantly impact the 2012-13 budget.

Consider that:

  • Assembly Bill 29x requires homeowners in State Responsibility Areas to pay a fire tax of $150 annually, but they do not receive any additional fire protection.

  • The fire tax violates Proposition 26, which requires any new fee or tax that broadly benefits the public to pass by a two-thirds vote of the Legislature.  Assembly Bill 29x passed with only a majority vote.

  • The 2011-12 Budget Act includes $50 million in new fire tax expenditures and the Governor proposes $48 million for 2012-13.  During the same period, General Fund baseline expenditures have been reduced by $191 million, requiring reductions in engine and dozer crews, Tahoe basin staffing and air attack capabilities.  Any revenue collected from the fire tax is not meant to backfill these reductions.

  • The Governor’s reliance on up to $88 million from the illegal tax could create an additional hole in the 2012-13 budget.  For example, the Board of Equalization recently estimated fire tax revenues could be $67 million. This uncertainty will put additional pressure on next year’s budget.  The state has already borrowed $50 million from the General Fund in 2011-12 to make up for uncollected fire taxes.

Click to continue reading “Is The Fire Tax Unconstitutional.”

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Biologists for hire sell opinions

Biologists for hire, Op-ed

http://www.times-standard.com/guest_opinion/ci_20170213/biologists-hire-sell-opinions

Denver Nelson, Guest Opinion For the Times-Standard March 14, 2012

The recent arrest of Mad River biologists Ronald LeValley and Sean McAllister on charges of using phony spotted owl surveys to embezzle funds from the Yurok Tribe should lead to an in-depth discussion of the long-standing method of obtaining a scientific consultation for any resource project. For many years, I have been troubled by the many partially trained alleged biologists willing to give an opinion on virtually any project for a large sum of money. This is usually done under the guise of “science,” and the experts usually have some scientific training. The more expensive ones may have a college degree or have written numerous reports. They may have become a member in good standing of the local scientific community.

In most situations, there is no criteria for becoming an expert. Some experts have undergraduate degrees; a few have advanced degrees; some did not complete their degree or have degrees in a field not related to their expert opinions. There are virtually no testing or knowledge standards for becoming an expert.

It is a poorly kept secret that if you have a project that needs a favorable expert scientific opinion, there are many alleged scientific experts in this area who will give you a favorable opinion for a large sum of money. Conversely if you need a negative opinion, for an equally large sum of money, you can find an alleged scientific expert who will back your negative opinion. If this project then comes to court, judges are left with no valid scientific expertise and are forced to base their opinions on the narrow interpretations of the legal process such as the ridiculous Richardson Grove opinion being based on the accuracy of measurements of tree diameters.

I do not know Ron LeValley or Sean McAllister, and have had no dealings with either of them. I have no opinions on the legality of their dealings with the Yurok Tribe. I do believe that there needs to be a reevaluation of the use and credentials of scientific experts in resource issues. Scientific experts are routinely making recommendations that affect public safety and public funds. Virtually all other professionals, from cosmetologists to neurosurgeons, are required to be licensed by the state; so should scientific experts.

Dr. Denver Nelson is a Humboldt County planning commissioner, former neurosurgeon , Klamath River advocate and Cutten resident.

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REFLECTIONS OF NAZI TYRANNY

Klamath Basin Crisis.org, Op-ed

PNP comment: Worth re-reading this. — Editor Liz Bowen

 “The victor will never be asked if he told the truth…. Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.” Adolph Hitler

By Jim Beers

10/18/09

Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow.

“Daddy, what did you do in the war?” – A common question in fortunate WWII postwar families like mine.

In the turbulence and bitterness of America in 2009 “political correctness”, character assassination, and intimidation make dialogue and inquiry all but impossible. Environmentalism, animal rights, socialism, racial divides, and an increasingly powerful and authoritarian central government all seem interwoven with and driven by a deteriorating economy that descends from one “crisis” to another. Desperate people look to a more powerful government as the only salvation and that government is all too willing to take over everyone and everything in a grip it intends never to relax. Government spending has skyrocketed and private enterprises of all kinds are increasingly under government direction. Government opponents in the media are identified and targeted as enemies. Church leaders and institutions are intimidated and told to cooperate or face elimination. A steady drumbeat of “new” laws, many unread by legislators and lied about to an ignorant public, are passed that dramatically change the society. Meetings to organize protests are broken up by “community organizers” that have been told by the President that they will be enlisted in a new domestic police that he plans to establish. This state of affairs could just as easily be used to describe Germany in the 1930’s.

Of course there are many exceptions to any comparison of Germany circa the 1930’s and the USA today. Today we show no tendency toward foreign conquest, indeed we are pursuing mere conversation for every foreign threat from nuclear weapon proliferation to Moslem Jihadism and Russian power expansionism. Simultaneously, we are embracing communist ideologues (Honduras, Venezuela, Cuba) that 1930’s Germans hated and feared would conquer them eventually. In spite of being immersed in a never-ending apology for the worldwide and centuries-old practice of slavery and the conquest of European culture over the primitive culture existing in America circa 1492, we have no national delusion about “restoring” a racial culture of supermen that are superior to all other cultures. While government increasingly divides Americans with racial classifications and programs, no concentration camps or “final solution” are in evidence.

What we do share with Germany circa the 1930’s is a radical government agenda and a powerful central government completely controlled by a single party committed to implementing that radical agenda during a time of one economic crisis after another. A thumbnail summary of the domestic (within the country) portion of that agenda might include:

Central Government control of business, banks, health care, insurance and as much else of the economy as possible.

Read more at Klamath Basin Crisis.org

http://www.klamathbasincrisis.org/beers/reflectionsofNazi101809.htm

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Idaho Gov. Otter to feds: Pony up more cash for wolves

Federal gov & land grabs, State gov, Wolves

By SEAN COCKERHAM — scockerham@idahostatesman.com

Posted: 12:00am on Mar 8, 2012

WASHINGTON — Hunters, trappers and others wiped out nearly a third of Idaho’s wolves last year after the state took over management from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. But about 750 survived, and Gov. Butch Otter wants federal money as reimbursement for Idaho having to host them.

Otter says the federal government needs to give the state and ranchers more money to compensate for the wolves. Fish and Wildlife, though, wants to cut back on money for Idaho since the wolves are no longer on the endangered species list.

Members of Congress, led by Rep. Mike Simpson of Idaho, last year used a budget bill to effectively delist wolves in Idaho and Montana. The move gave the states the ability to manage their wolf populations, and Idaho has authorized hunting and trapping.

The federal government reintroduced wolves to Idaho in 1995. The Idaho Department of Fish and Game released a report Wednesday estimating the state wolf population at the end of 2011 was 746 and that biologists had confirmed the deaths of 296 during the year.

Hunters and trappers accounted for 200 of the known deaths, while most of the others came from government wolf control efforts and landowner actions taken in the face of livestock predation. The state doesn’t have a clear estimate of the current number of wolves in Idaho. But 169 more wolves have been killed in the state since the start of the year. So the population could be down in the range of 577, said Jon Rachael of Fish and Game.

“Thanks to Idaho’s hunters and trappers, we’ve made good progress in getting the wolf population under control and into better balance with prey species, such as elk, but we’ve still got a ways to go,” said Jim Unsworth, Fish and Game’s deputy director.

Wolves give birth to pups in April, and numbers will change then, but the population is down in Idaho for the second straight year. An estimate compiled by the Nez Perce Tribe at the end of 2010 put the number of wolves in Idaho at 777, down from a high of 856 the year before.

The state has to maintain a minimum of 150 wolves and 15 breeding pairs to prevent a review of whether they should again be a protected species.

OTTER: U.S. SHOULD PAY FOR DAMAGE

Otter complained to Congress about the wolves last week, testifying in Washington, D.C., that wolf reintroduction had been forced on the state and the federal government should be “exploring a long-term funding mechanism to mitigate this federal action.”

He argued that the feds should be paying for wolf and elk management costs in Idaho, and that “livestock producers should be reimbursed for confirmed and probable livestock losses.”

Otter’s office said the state was instead told to expect a gradual cut in federal wolf management dollars over the next four years from $704,000 down to zero.

“I hear from environmental groups all over the United States when we started our very successful wolf hunt, that, ‘Why was I killing all those wolves, and how beautiful they are,’” Otter told Congress. “You respond back to them and say, ‘When was the last time you came to Idaho and spent some money to look at a wolf?’”

AGENCY: MONEY NEEDED ELSEWHERE

U.S. Fish and Wildlife said a cut in federal wolf management funding comes along with taking wolves off the protected list.

“Now that wolves are recovered, the service funding that had supported recovery management efforts for wolves needs be re-directed to listed species that are at risk of extinction,” Fish and Wildlife spokesman Jason Holm told the Statesman.

The governor’s office said the federal government should also do more to reimburse ranchers. The state reports 71 cattle, 121 sheep, six dogs, three horses and two domestic bison were confirmed as wolf kills last year. A smaller number were considered to be “probable” kills.

The environmental group Defenders of Wildlife was paying for livestock reimbursement until September 2010. Otter spokesman Jon Hanian said Congress appropriated money to reimburse ranchers, but the fund is now down to just $20,000 after paying out $100,000 last year.

Hanian said the federal government is talking about putting more into the fund, but only half the new money would go to ranchers, and the other half for nonlethal control of wolves.

The concerns about federal funding have become an issue in the Idaho Legislature. A House committee has introduced a bill to divert $8 from every wolf hunting tag sold in Idaho into an account for livestock reimbursement and wolf management.

Read more here:

http://www.idahostatesman.com/2012/03/08/2026038/otter-to-feds-pony-up-more-cash.html#storylink=cpy

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Salazar Announces More than $4.2 Million in Conservation Grants to Native American Tribes

Federal gov & land grabs, Julie Kay Smithson - research property rights, Julie Kay Smithson -property rights research, Sheriffs

 $4.2 Million goes to Tribes  in AL/AK/AZ/CA/CO/FL/KS/ME/MI/MT/ND/NM/NV/OR/TX/WA/WI

March 16, 2012

From: interior_news@ios.doi.gov

http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/AMERICAS-GREAT-OUTDOORS-Salazar-Announces-More-than-4-point-2-Million-in-Conservation-Grants-to-Native-American-Tribes.cfm

Contacts:

Adam Fetcher (DOI) adam_fetcher@ios.doi.gov or 202-208-6416 (Washington, D.C.)

Noemi Perez (FWS) noemi_perez@fws.gov or 703-358-2688 (Virginia)

Washington, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced more than $4.2 million in Tribal Wildlife Grants to 23 Native American Tribes in 17 states to fund a wide range of conservation projects ranging from salmon restoration to invasive species control.

“Native American tribes have a deep and abiding knowledge of the land and its wildlife handed down from generation to generation,” Salazar said. “Through these grants, we are building on our longstanding partnership with tribal nations to manage our wildlife and its habitat more effectively across the country.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has distributed more than $54 million to Native American Tribes through the Tribal Wildlife Grants Program since 2003, providing support for more than 350 conservation projects administered by participating Federally-recognized tribes. The grants provide technical and financial assistance for the development and implementation of projects that benefit fish and wildlife resources and their habitat, including non-game species.

“Native American Tribes manage more than 100 million acres of vital fish and wildlife habitat across the nation and have a long heritage as stewards of the land and its wildlife,” said Fish and Wildlife Service Dan Ashe. “These grants will help ensure that they have the resources to tap into their vast knowledge and experience to best manage these lands.”

For example, the Miccosukee Tribe of Florida will be a partner in efforts to restore Everglade snail kite habitat on the Miccosukee Reservation and surrounding lands totaling more than 260,000 wetland acres. The tribe is also pursuing its ability to restore and enhance aquatic habitat for native fisheries, and reduce mercury exposure for Tribal members in the heart of the Florida Everglades, where nearly 90 percent of the waters are covered by consumption bans due to toxic levels of mercury in fish. A $199,000 grant will help the tribe increase its fish-rearing and stocking capability. “The Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida looks forward to the development of the Aquatic Repopulation Center funded through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service,” said Miccosukee Tribe Chairman Colley Billie. “The project will allow our Tribal members to enhance endangered species habitat, create opportunities for our youth, preserve cultural knowledge, facilita te training opportunities and provide subsistence resources to the Tribe.”

Other examples of this year’s Tribal Wildlife Grants include:

Swinomish Indian Tribe of Washington

The Swinomish Indian Tribal Community will inventory, manage, protect, and enhance wildlife and habitat resources on the 118 acres of tidelands, nearshore, and old growth forests of Kukutali Preserve on the Swinomish Reservation. A key element will include the creation of a 50-year management plan for the Kukutali Preserve by the Tribe and Washington State Parks as co-owners and managers of the Preserve. The restoration project is designed to protect the threatened Skagit Chinook salmon by providing protection to critical rearing habitat.

Chickaloon Native Village of Alaska

Continued funding for the Chickaloon Native Village supports the Matanuska Watershed Salmon Habitat and Restoration Project which serves as a broad initiative to restore natural landscapes, habitats, species and traditional cultural practices. Previous grants have been utilized to conduct salmon restoration in Moose Creek, restore and evaluate side channel habitat in the Matanuska River for salmon. The crowning jewel of this project was the restoration of Moose Creek – a critical salmon spawning route which was disrupted in the early 1900s when blasting for a locomotive rail cut off fish passage. Tribal leaders now comment that they are seeing salmon in upstream reaches that they had only heard about from their elders.

For more information on the Fish and Wildlife Service Tribal Wildlife Grant Program:
http://www.fws.gov/nativeamerican/grants.html

Below is a state-by-state list of the grants announced today:

ALABAMA

Poarch Band of Creek Indians ($200,000) Rivercane Reintroduction and Longleaf Pine Restoration

ALASKA

Sun’aq Tribe of Kodiak ($200,000) Sun’aq Salmon Enhancement Planning Project

Chickaloon Native Village ($199,728) Matanuska Watershed Salmon Habitat and Restoration Project

ARIZONA

San Carlos Apache Tribe ($200,000) San Carlos Apache Eagle Aviary

CALIFORNIA

Cahto Indian Tribe ($130,312) Salmon Habitat Enhancement

Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay ($200,000) Kumeyaay Heritage and Habitat

Yurok Tribe ($192,217) Hunters as Stewards: Effecting Positive Change in the Perception of Non-lead Ammunition

COLORADO

Southern Ute Indian Tribe ($186,707) Roundtail Chub Conservation Management

FLORIDA

Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida ($199,458) Mercury Safe Fisheries and Snail Kite

KANSAS

Prairie Band Potawatomi ($133,645) Buffalo Preservation Project

MAINE

Penobscot Indian Nation ($194,798) Aquatic Furbearer Population and Contaminant Assessment on Trust and Reservation Lands

Passamaquoddy Tribe – Indian Township Reservation ($119,544) A Program to Study the Effectiveness and Viability of Next Boxes for American Marten

MICHIGAN

Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians ($199,978) Development of the Michigan Walleye Population Model for the 1836 Ceded Territory

MONTANA

Gros Ventre and Sioux Tribes ($200,000) Eagle Rehabilitation Program

NEVADA

Summit Lake Paiute Tribe ($200,000) A Strategy to Promote Conservation of Sage Grouse on Homelands of the Summit Lake Paiute

NEW MEXICO

Pueblo of Santa Ana ($200,000) Assessment of Woodrat Population, and Habitat Use on the Pueblo of Santa Ana

NORTH DAKOTA

Spirit Lake Nation ($200,000) Management Plans, Wildlife Data and Regulations

OREGON

Cow Creek Band of Indians ($200,000) Lamprey Conservation in the Umpqua Basin Project

TEXAS

Ysleta del Sur Pueblo ($188,273) Mule Deer and Pronghorn Conservation Plan

WASHINGTON

Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe ($199,389) Duckabush Elk Home Range, Herd Structure and Habitat Assessment Project

Swinomish Tribe ($200,000) Kukutali Preserve

WISCONSIN

Ho-Chunk Nation ($200,000) Development of Ho-Chunk Nation Wildlife Management Plan and Native Species Restoration Plan

St. Croix Chippewa ($200,000) Common Carp Research/Mitigation and Wild Rice Restoration on the Clam River System and Clam Lake

DOI News Releases: http://www.doi.gov/news/index.cfm and http://www.doi.gov/news/pressreleases/index.cfm

USFWS Virtual Newsroom: http://onlinepressroom.net/fws/

Julie Kay Smithson, researcher since 1999. Subscribe today & receive carefully researched property rights / natural resources research delivered to your inbox! propertyrights@earthlink.net Websites: http://www.propertyrightsresearch.org http://propertyrightsresearch.blogspot.com http://wigglesblueheeler.blogspot.com & http://tips2ussavethem.blogspot.com Also: http://ourcommunitynewspaper.com

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More than $4.2 million in enviro grants to Native American Tribes

Federal gov & land grabs, Threats to agriculture, Tribes

Secretary Salazar Announces More Than $4.2 Million in Conservation Grants to Native American Tribes
More Than $722,000 to Four Tribes in California and Nevada

Secretary of the Interior today announced the award of more than $4.2 million in Tribal Wildlife Grants to 23 Native American Tribes, including 3 Tribes in California and one in Nevada, to fund a wide range of conservation projects ranging from salmon restoration to invasive species control.

“Native American tribes have a deep and abiding knowledge of the land and its wildlife handed down from generation to generation,” Salazar said. “Through these grants, we are building on our long-standing partnership with tribal nations to manage our wildlife and its habitat more effectively across the country.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has distributed more than $54 million to Native American Tribes through the Tribal Wildlife Grants Program since 2003, providing support for more than 350 conservation projects administered by participating Federally-recognized tribes. The grants provide technical assistance for the development and implementation of projects that benefit fish and wildlife resources and their habitat, including non-game species.

“Native American Tribes manage more than 100 million acres of vital fish and wildlife habitat across the nation and have a long heritage as stewards of the land and its wildlife,” said Fish and Wildlife Service Dan Ashe. “These grants will help ensure that they have the resources to tap
into their vast knowledge and experience to best manage these lands.”

This year’s Tribal Wildlife Grants awards in Pacific Southwest Region are:

California

Cahto Indian Tribe of the Laytonville Rancheria ($130,312)
Cahto Creek Salmon and Steelhead Habitat Enhancement

This project involves the restoration, enhancement, and protection of one mile of Cahto Creek and 12 acres of adjacent riparian habitat. The project benefits Coho and Chinook salmon and steelhead. Project activities include the placement of large wood for stream habitat enhancement, riparian planting, and the development and implementation of a habitat conservation plan.

Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation ($200,000)

Kumeyaay Heritage and Habitat Conservation Project
The Kumeyaay Heritage and Habitat Conservation Project will integrate Kumeyaay cultural knowledge into land management practices throughout its trust land and native homeland. This project will provide for baseline surveys, habitat mapping, and the development of adaptive management plans for tribal lands along the Sweetwater River. This project benefits the arroyo toad, least Bell’s vireo, coastal California gnatcatcher, and southwestern willow flycatcher.

Yurok Tribe ($192,217)

Hunters as Stewards: Effecting Positive Change in the Perception of Non-lead Ammunition
The primary goal of this project is to reduce lead contamination from hunting ammunition within the historical range of the California condor. The project includes educational outreach and training to promote voluntary use of non-lead ammunition and exchanges of lead for non-lead ammunition. This effort will reduce health risks associated with lead for both wildlife and humans and support ongoing efforts to reintroduce California condors in northern California and southern Oregon.

Nevada

Summit Lake Paiute Tribe ($200,000)

A Strategy to Promote Conservation of Sage Grouse on Homelands of the Summit Lake Paiute
The Tribe will initiate a monitoring program to identify seasonal habitat use of greater sage grouse populations inhabiting the Summit Lake Paiute Reservation and surrounding area. Results from this project will help guide management recommendations for sage grouse and their key habitats on the Reservation. An additional goal of this project is to expand Tribal capacity for natural resource management through the training and education of Tribal staff and members.

Additional information about Native American conservation projects nationwide go to http://www.fws.gov/nativeamerican/grants.html.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen in the Pacific Southwest Region visit www.fws.gov/cno . Connect with our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/usfwspacificsouthwest, follow our tweets at http://twitter.com/#!/usfwsPacSWest, watch our YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/usfws and download photos from our Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfws_pacificsw

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Repeal of rural fire fee goal of bill; LaMalfa, Nielsen back legislation

Assemblyman/Senator Jim Nielsen, CA Sen Doug LaMalfa, Fire Fees, State gov

A group of California Republican lawmakers, including Assemblyman Jim Nielsen and Sen. Doug LaMalfa, introduced legislation Thursday that would repeal the state’s firefighting fee on rural homeowners.

They called the fee an unconstitutional tax. At a news conference Thursday morning, the lawmakers were joined by representatives from the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, an anti-tax group that says it will sue as soon as property owners are hit with the fee of up to $150.

“Many rural Californians already pay taxes for their local fire protection district, in addition to state taxes, so they won’t see any new service at all from this tax,” said LaMalfa, of Richvale. “Rural residents already are required to keep their homes fire safe, but the state government’s failure to safely maintain public lands directly contributes to the size of wildfires. Taxing Californians more won’t do a thing to change that.”

State Democrats passed a budget in June that included a provision that imposed a fee of up to $150 on buildings on the 31 million acres that fall under the protection of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

READ it at:

http://www.redding.com/news/2012/mar/15/repeal-of-fire-fee-goal-of-bill/?partner=newsletter_headlines

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