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Old 04-11-2012, 09:18 AM   #1 (permalink)
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California Motorized Recreation Council Employs Top Washington, DC Lobbyists to Help

http://offroadpress.com/2012/04/the-...lley-ohv-area/

The California Motorized Recreation Council Employs Top Washington, DC Lobbyists to Help Save the Johnson Valley OHV Area


The California Motorized Recreation Council (CMRC), an umbrella group of the eight largest OHV access groups in California, has agreed to contract terms with the Livingston Group, LLC in Washington, DC to help stave off the expansion of the 29 Palms Marine Base. The move comes on the heels of the expected April 27th, 2012 release of a Final Environmental Impact Study (FEIS) by the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps wishes to annex approximately 160,000 acres of the Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle area, which is the largest open OHV area in the United States and contributes over $70 million dollars into the economy of the surrounding High Desert communities annually.


The Marine Corps proposal would limit motorized recreation to less than one percent of the entire California Desert, a move in which the Off-Road Business Association (ORBA) contends will cripple the already battered off-road manufacturing industry, and increase the likelihood of resource damage and safety concerns at the remaining OHV areas. “Our industry has continued to grow at steady pace since the late 1970s, while in that same time period we have lost 48% of the recreational opportunities in the California Desert.” Fred Wiley, the president of the Off-Road Business Association went on to say, “While we support the training needs of our military, it is a bitter pill to swallow losing such a massive piece of our public lands, considering the limited time the Marine Corps plans to utilize this portion of the desert.”


According to a draft EIS, the Marine Corps only plans to hold training exercises 24 days each year in Johnson Valley. While the expected proposal does allow for a limited shared use of a portion of the OHV area, event promoter Dave Cole, who produces a large off road race in Johnson Valley, believes, “ The current shared use alternative has no language for securing the perimeter of the expansion, and that’s a set up for a dangerous situation for the public. They don’t currently secure the base line now, and most of the public has no idea they are wandering on to the base. It will be 10 times worse if they expand.”

“Our primary objective was to figure out a way in which everyone could get what they needed. Rather than draw a line in the sand, we are proposing the Marine Corps work with us to meet those needs. To accomplish our goals, we had to pass our message to professionals in DC, and that’s where the Livingston Group comes in.” Jerry Grabow, American Motorcyclists Association District 37 Off-Road President, went on to say, “It’s a departure from our normal way of dealing with the loss of OHV recreational opportunities.”

Unifying a diverse group of OHV enthusiasts from across the state, CMRC delegates voted overwhelmingly to support the contract with the Livingston Group. The move supports a re-enforced position by off-roaders who are willing to go all the way to Washington, DC to maintain motorized recreation in Johnson Valley. A strategy that hopefully provides for future generations to experience the last great expanse of desert that OHV users may enjoy.


There are a number of issues that will need to be addressed if the Marines wish to push forward with their expansion into Johnson Valley, among them the demonstration of need. With tremendous budget cuts looming for our armed forces, there remains a question of weather the Marine Corps can even afford to assemble the troops they hope to train in the new expansion area, and then there is the changing mission of the Marine Corps that appears to be a return to their amphibious roots. The 29 Palms Marine base currently claims title of the second largest military base in the world, and presently resembles the sheer size of ¾ the state of Rhode Island. Only the neighboring Fort Irwin Army base is larger, which is located only miles away.


For more information about the efforts to save the Johnson Valley OHV area or make a donation, please visit www.savethehammers.org
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Old 04-11-2012, 06:11 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Nice.

Lobby is what we need at a Fed level for OHV...just like NRA.
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I'm attempting to understand what this paragraph alludes to:

Quote:
“Our primary objective was to figure out a way in which everyone could get what they needed. Rather than draw a line in the sand, we are proposing the Marine Corps work with us to meet those needs. To accomplish our goals, we had to pass our message to professionals in DC, and that’s where the Livingston Group comes in.” Jerry Grabow, American Motorcyclists Association District 37 Off-Road President, went on to say, “It’s a departure from our normal way of dealing with the loss of OHV recreational opportunities.”
[Emphasis Added]

I'd think when the lobbyist are working the Senate and the House, they would have a concept to sell.

This being said, what does the group that has hired this firm find that would be an acceptable compromise?
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:08 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm attempting to understand what this paragraph alludes to:

[Emphasis Added]

I'd think when the lobbyist are working the Senate and the House, they would have a concept to sell.

This being said, what does the group that has hired this firm find that would be an acceptable compromise?
That's an easy question.
No base expansion into Johnson Valley.

You'll need to check with your association on the fine details. We have been working on this almost weekly since October.

I think your a member of CORVA right? CORVA is part of the group and should be sharing whats going on with its members. Has Jim Woods shared whats going on with CORVA membership?

If not maybe a member of PFJV? Harry Baker should be sharing with that group.

I ask this because it has been stressed in all the meetings that each of the groups needs to make sure and share whats going on with its membership. Its even part of the strategic plan that each group must keep its membership in the loop on this subject so we don't end up in debates among ourselves on the web. This is a unified effort, not a select group.

Please don't try and paint this as a secret group making a deal. Its far from that and i personally have worked hard to make it a unified effort.

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Old 04-12-2012, 10:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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That's an easy question.
No base expansion into Johnson Valley.

You'll need to check with your association on the fine details. We have been working on this almost weekly since October.

I think your a member of CORVA right? CORVA is part of the group and should be sharing whats going on with its members. Has Jim Woods shared whats going on with CORVA membership?

If not maybe a member of PFJV? Harry Baker should be sharing with that group.

I ask this because it has been stressed in all the meetings that each of the groups needs to make sure and share whats going on with its membership. Its even part of the strategic plan that each group must keep its membership in the loop on this subject so we don't end up in debates among ourselves on the web. This is a unified effort, not a select group.

Please don't try and paint this as a secret group making a deal. Its far from that and i personally have worked hard to make it a unified effort.
Empahsis added.

Interesting choice of words here Jeff.

I've looked at CORVA's web site and don't see a thing about this.

I've talked with one in the CORVA leadership and they don't know a thing about this.

I've yet to talk to Jim about this, but rest assured that I'll be talking with Jim tomorrow.

I've yet to hear from the Bakers about this. But rest assured I'll be talking with them tomorrow.

I've read the Political section of D-37's web site and don't find one word about this on their site.

I'm not attempting to down this effort.

It may indeed be a good one.

Yet, not one of the groups above have posted this information on their web site.

I'm just very concerned about Jerry's statement in the press release and what he is alluding to.

Its rather simple here Jeff. The ONLY option for motorized recreation is the USMC moving east. Otherwise, we lose.

BTW... I'm hearing from insiders that CBD is being courted by the USMC to make a deal. Something to the effect of making JV, once taken by the USMC, into a "limited use area".

I find it rather odd, just like the silence of CBD on the Ivanpah solar site, that CBD has been quiet on the JV expansion.

My concern, as shown in the past (D-37 deal on the California Desert Protection Act of 1994) that a secret "backroom deal" is not being attempted and the vast majority of the rest of off-highway motorized recreation is precluded in such a "deal".

Please send this message to Fred.
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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"limited" and/or "shared" use is a red herring. We all know that will NEVER work. The Marines are not in the business of land management.

29 Palms does NOT need to expand. Esp. With the DID budget coming down and the task force review. That is our winning play IMO....not them going east.
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Old 04-13-2012, 08:53 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Empahsis added.

Interesting choice of words here Jeff.

I've looked at CORVA's web site and don't see a thing about this.

I've talked with one in the CORVA leadership and they don't know a thing about this.

I've yet to talk to Jim about this, but rest assured that I'll be talking with Jim tomorrow.

I've yet to hear from the Bakers about this. But rest assured I'll be talking with them tomorrow.

I've read the Political section of D-37's web site and don't find one word about this on their site.

I'm not attempting to down this effort.

It may indeed be a good one.

Yet, not one of the groups above have posted this information on their web site.

I'm just very concerned about Jerry's statement in the press release and what he is alluding to.

Its rather simple here Jeff. The ONLY option for motorized recreation is the USMC moving east. Otherwise, we lose.

BTW... I'm hearing from insiders that CBD is being courted by the USMC to make a deal. Something to the effect of making JV, once taken by the USMC, into a "limited use area".

I find it rather odd, just like the silence of CBD on the Ivanpah solar site, that CBD has been quiet on the JV expansion.

My concern, as shown in the past (D-37 deal on the California Desert Protection Act of 1994) that a secret "backroom deal" is not being attempted and the vast majority of the rest of off-highway motorized recreation is precluded in such a "deal".

Please send this message to Fred.

We are long past the Marines moving East Steve. They are not going to do that. The only option is NO base expansion at this point. If you or anyone else had a plan of attack on how to make them go east That card should have been played, because from my dealings with Legislators on this subject, I don't feel we can win with that argument.

In about 14 days this thing will start moving toward congress. So I am not sure what the CBD is doing, but I am sure we will find out soon.

I am also not sure how much more transparent this campaign can be?

CORVA, AMA national, AMA D36, AMA D37, ORBA, ASA, and CNSA all voted on every action taken. The direction was (and is) being debated at almost weekly meetings of the JV sub committee. The Sub Committee includes members of the race community, Hammerking, PFJV, and folks like Kurt, and Del Albright. Even Bob Ham was at a few meetings on the subject. Sub committee presents the ideas to CMRC for approval, so there are a few checks and balances.

Its a very diverse group of OHV people.

CMRC position is No base expansion. Sorry your associations have not communicated whats going on. I would suggest you make that point clear to those in leadership.

If you would like to send a message to Fred his email is fwiley@orba.biz

Steve,
"The past is useful only as a ways and means for progress."(Ford) I can't dwell on what any of the groups might have done wrong in the past, I can only base my opinion on what they are doing correctly now.

If you care to share what you know about the CBD please drop me a line, it maybe helpful in our work with the Lobbyists. We need to be unified on this subject, and every bit of intelligence is needed.

Sorry I can't take the time to spell out the last 6 months for you but I have to keep moving forward and debating on the web is a poor investment of my time.
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Old 04-13-2012, 09:29 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Steve I just went to CORVA's website and read the latest newsletter (April). Jim Woods president report should have included the work being done by CMRC, but it does not. I am disappointed that they are not sharing information from those meetings. I am not going to assume why?
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:47 AM   #9 (permalink)
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So Jeff...

What I hear you saying is that Jerry's statement below is not confusing with what you are now posting?

..."everyone could get what they needed."

..." work with us to meet those needs."

Quote:
“Our primary objective was to figure out a way in which everyone could get what they needed. Rather than draw a line in the sand, we are proposing the Marine Corps work with us to meet those needs. To accomplish our goals, we had to pass our message to professionals in DC, and that’s where the Livingston Group comes in.” Jerry Grabow, American Motorcyclists Association District 37 Off-Road President, went on to say, “It’s a departure from our normal way of dealing with the loss of OHV recreational opportunities.”
So how does this square with your comment:

Quote:
That's an easy question.
No base expansion into Johnson Valley.
More to the point, how in the world is the USMC going to get their "needs" met when you provide for "No base expansion into Johnson Valley."

Since you like quotes about history, please allow me to provide one too:

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Sir Winston Churchill
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Old 04-13-2012, 11:37 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by aphantomduck View Post

More to the point, how in the world is the USMC going to get their "needs" met when you provide for "No base expansion into Johnson Valley."
Becuase they no longer NEED Johnson Valley.


Edit: I dunno what Graybow is talking about.
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Old 04-13-2012, 11:39 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Since you like quotes about history, please allow me to provide one too:

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Sir Winston Churchill

“An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile - hoping it will eat him last” Sir Winston Churchill.

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Old 04-13-2012, 11:48 AM   #12 (permalink)
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“an appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile - hoping it will eat him last” sir winston churchill.

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Old 04-13-2012, 12:55 PM   #13 (permalink)
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So Jeff...

What I hear you saying is that Jerry's statement below is not confusing with what you are now posting?

..."everyone could get what they needed."

..." work with us to meet those needs."


So how does this square with your comment:



More to the point, how in the world is the USMC going to get their "needs" met when you provide for "No base expansion into Johnson Valley."

Since you like quotes about history, please allow me to provide one too:

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Sir Winston Churchill
I like that quote also.


Since I crafted the press release I can tell you I needed certain quotes to send our message. Its a shame I should have to explain every aspect of what that is.( the message should have already trickled down.) My goal is for this press release to reach beyond the OHV community. Do I really need to dissect the entire subliminal message here?
Here goes;
We support the Military but don't want them to take our public land away. Black and white enough?

Steve you really seem to be concerned that Jerry Grabow is going to throw you(OHV ers that you represent) under the bus, but what have you done to make sure that has not happened? Do you not support the donation into this effort that PFJV is making? Have you engaged in any conversations about the subject with Harry and/or Jim Woods? They both had input into this unified effort.

The ball is in the air we are down to the 4th quarter.


What do you propose is the best course of action regarding Johnson Valley?
You mentioned Go East a few posts above, how can the OHV industry accomplish this? I truly don't want to miss anything with this effort. Its 160,000 acres we are talking about. What is your plan?

I can tell you each of the leaders of the various groups has our complete plan, and they should be able to share it with you. Its a 16 page document, plus another 12 page document that spells out economic impact, plus the 6 page proposal from the Livingston Group. I almost forgot the one page summary.

That's 35 pages total. Each group has a copy of it from its inception to completion. Harry and Jim both have copies as does BRC, and a host of others. I don't believe we have missed anyone, but they're is always a chance.

This is why I am so concerned about information getting spread down the trail to the groups members. One person can raise questions of doubt on the web, and it starts a ball rolling of distrust, and starts to unravel the entire process and work that has been done. Don't believe me Steve? Explain the text messages I keep getting with questions about this thread, and your posts.

I get it you don't like some of theses people, or maybe even me, but the people from the groups you belong to were sitting at the table. They failed to inform you, that's the issue here.



Steve I humbly ask you to please obtain a copy of the strategic plan and related paperwork from either Harry, or Jim before you continue raising suspicions. Read the document and you will understand where this thing is going.

Back to work for me, lunch is over.
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Old 04-13-2012, 02:33 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Becuase they no longer NEED Johnson Valley.


Edit: I dunno what Graybow is talking about.
I agree 100% with you Kurt. Due to what you found out the mission of the USMC changing (thanks for that head's-up) to more of an amphibious mission than that of a desert expedition unit.

As the Graybow quote, this is my precise question.

I'm just attempting to understand what he provides in this quote.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:32 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I like that quote also.


Since I crafted the press release I can tell you I needed certain quotes to send our message. Its a shame I should have to explain every aspect of what that is.( the message should have already trickled down.) My goal is for this press release to reach beyond the OHV community. Do I really need to dissect the entire subliminal message here?
Here goes;
We support the Military but don't want them to take our public land away. Black and white enough?

Steve you really seem to be concerned that Jerry Grabow is going to throw you(OHV ers that you represent) under the bus, but what have you done to make sure that has not happened? Do you not support the donation into this effort that PFJV is making? Have you engaged in any conversations about the subject with Harry and/or Jim Woods? They both had input into this unified effort.

The ball is in the air we are down to the 4th quarter.


What do you propose is the best course of action regarding Johnson Valley?
You mentioned Go East a few posts above, how can the OHV industry accomplish this? I truly don't want to miss anything with this effort. Its 160,000 acres we are talking about. What is your plan?

I can tell you each of the leaders of the various groups has our complete plan, and they should be able to share it with you. Its a 16 page document, plus another 12 page document that spells out economic impact, plus the 6 page proposal from the Livingston Group. I almost forgot the one page summary.

That's 35 pages total. Each group has a copy of it from its inception to completion. Harry and Jim both have copies as does BRC, and a host of others. I don't believe we have missed anyone, but they're is always a chance.

This is why I am so concerned about information getting spread down the trail to the groups members. One person can raise questions of doubt on the web, and it starts a ball rolling of distrust, and starts to unravel the entire process and work that has been done. Don't believe me Steve? Explain the text messages I keep getting with questions about this thread, and your posts.

I get it you don't like some of theses people, or maybe even me, but the people from the groups you belong to were sitting at the table. They failed to inform you, that's the issue here.



Steve I humbly ask you to please obtain a copy of the strategic plan and related paperwork from either Harry, or Jim before you continue raising suspicions. Read the document and you will understand where this thing is going.

Back to work for me, lunch is over.
Jeff... please allow me to be more to the point.

I'm not attempting to discourage this effort. I like the direction and support the concept.

I've been doing this land use stuff for nearly 35 years. I have read likely over 100 + NEPA documents and thousands of pages of legal brief's and Court decisions. I've been closely involved in legislative efforts both on the state and federal level.

I read things much closer than most and attempt to see areas that might get us in trouble. For good or bad, I'm one who works very hard to expore documents much deeper than most.

I'll get your documents from Jim and read them.

My concern was about Jerry's statement in the press release and, at least to me; I was attempting to understand how both goals can be achieved without loosing what we have in JV today.

Again, I'm not attempting to bad mouth or keep folks from supporting an effort that you and others have been working on - if indeed the goal is to not lose one square inch of what JV has today.

I like Jerry and perhaps his words were not conveying the message as he intended it to come out.

Finally Jeff, I worked my ass off from 1986 - 1994 to keep the California Desert Protection Act of 1994 from happening.

The California Desert Coalition was a broad based group that worked rather well together with its goal to defeat the Alan Cranston proposal. We were successful in that endevor.

It was only when AMA National and D-37 cut a deal with the key Senator's in DC (which was not known by the rest of the Coalition) did the bill move towards becoming law. Both AMA and D-37 told the Senators that they represented ALL motorized recreation in California. This was told to me by Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell the day after the deal was stuck.

So perhaps now you can understand some of the concept I use of "trust but verify" as I read Jerry's comments. I know fully well that Jerry was not in a leadership position of leadership in that day.

I just don't want to see history repeat itself where a group goes on its own instead of staying in lockstep with the united approach formed by this effort.
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Old 04-13-2012, 05:51 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Jeff... please allow me to be more to the point.

I'm not attempting to discourage this effort. I like the direction and support the concept.

I've been doing this land use stuff for nearly 35 years. I have read likely over 100 + NEPA documents and thousands of pages of legal brief's and Court decisions. I've been closely involved in legislative efforts both on the state and federal level.

I read things much closer than most and attempt to see areas that might get us in trouble. For good or bad, I'm one who works very hard to expore documents much deeper than most.

I'll get your documents from Jim and read them.

My concern was about Jerry's statement in the press release and, at least to me; I was attempting to understand how both goals can be achieved without loosing what we have in JV today.

Again, I'm not attempting to bad mouth or keep folks from supporting an effort that you and others have been working on - if indeed the goal is to not lose one square inch of what JV has today.

I like Jerry and perhaps his words were not conveying the message as he intended it to come out.

Finally Jeff, I worked my ass off from 1986 - 1994 to keep the California Desert Protection Act of 1994 from happening.

The California Desert Coalition was a broad based group that worked rather well together with its goal to defeat the Alan Cranston proposal. We were successful in that endevor.

It was only when AMA National and D-37 cut a deal with the key Senator's in DC (which was not known by the rest of the Coalition) did the bill move towards becoming law. Both AMA and D-37 told the Senators that they represented ALL motorized recreation in California. This was told to me by Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell the day after the deal was stuck.

So perhaps now you can understand some of the concept I use of "trust but verify" as I read Jerry's comments. I know fully well that Jerry was not in a leadership position of leadership in that day.

I just don't want to see history repeat itself where a group goes on its own instead of staying in lockstep with the united approach formed by this effort.
I know full well the feeling, it happened to me in DC last month when a member of McKeon's staff said a deal had already been struck with OHV leadership on this subject on a conference call. If I was to believe this person and get more pissed off about it, there is a possibility I would be counterproductive. So I do my best to make sure those that think a deal had been struck are informed that was incorrect. If I dwell on that I will unravel. The implication of who was perceived as making a deal might surprise you.

Like I said I am going to assume it was a misunderstanding and move forward. I cant imagine keeping that mistrust for 35 years. We are humans and we make mistakes. Our associations change in leadership, and players come and go.

So what exactly can be done to make sure it never happens again?

Saying a Senator told you something does not give me a lot of faith he was telling you the truth. The aid told me who had made a deal, as well, but who knows if that was the truth. Chess game after all.
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Old 04-13-2012, 07:56 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I know full well the feeling, it happened to me in DC last month when a member of McKeon's staff said a deal had already been struck with OHV leadership on this subject on a conference call. If I was to believe this person and get more pissed off about it, there is a possibility I would be counterproductive. So I do my best to make sure those that think a deal had been struck are informed that was incorrect. If I dwell on that I will unravel. The implication of who was perceived as making a deal might surprise you.

Like I said I am going to assume it was a misunderstanding and move forward. I cant imagine keeping that mistrust for 35 years. We are humans and we make mistakes. Our associations change in leadership, and players come and go.

So what exactly can be done to make sure it never happens again?

Saying a Senator told you something does not give me a lot of faith he was telling you the truth. The aid told me who had made a deal, as well, but who knows if that was the truth. Chess game after all.
I'm hearing what you are saying Jeff.

The difference for me was it was told to me by a respected Senator (not an aid) who's vote in Committee was swayed by what he was told.

The leadership of the California Desert Coalition questioned both AMA National and the rep from D-37 and was initially mislead. Then, the Executive Director of the Coalition did her own research on the matter and found what I was told to be true. The interesting part of this is that it was only after I made the revelation public did D-37 pull out of the Coalition.

Your right. What happened nearly 18 years ago is a long time to hold hostile feeling for. I can only hope that those who read this forum learn from what I provided and watch closely to make their leadership accountable for what the members desires.
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Old 04-13-2012, 08:25 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I'm hearing what you are saying Jeff.

The difference for me was it was told to me by a respected Senator (not an aid) who's vote in Committee was swayed by what he was told.

The leadership of the California Desert Coalition questioned both AMA National and the rep from D-37 and was initially mislead. Then, the Executive Director of the Coalition did her own research on the matter and found what I was told to be true. The interesting part of this is that it was only after I made the revelation public did D-37 pull out of the Coalition.

Your right. What happened nearly 18 years ago is a long time to hold hostile feeling for. I can only hope that those who read this forum learn from what I provided and watch closely to make their leadership accountable for what the members desires.
I hope so as well. We agree on that.
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Old 04-13-2012, 08:31 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I would think that CBD would choose OHV over tanks, troops and bombs rolling though Johnson Valley. It "should" be about the impact to the environment for them.

Right?
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:32 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I would think that CBD would choose OHV over tanks, troops and bombs rolling though Johnson Valley. It "should" be about the impact to the environment for them.

Right?
+1 on that, I was at a Buggy/Truck event in Spangler area in the Ridgecrest
district, The area for the most part is as pristine as the "limited use" classified
lands I live near

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Old 04-15-2012, 11:25 AM   #21 (permalink)
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There is more than one way to tackle the problem of Johnson Valley, as there is often more than one way to look at an issue.

One group has already spearheaded the way by hiring a lobbyist in Washington DC to do what lobbyist know how best to do. Congratulations to Jeff and ORBA - I'm eager to see what happens.

There are other ways to tackle Johnson Valley as well - by concentrating on the NEPA process, working with local governments and forming coalitions of all the on-the-ground users to form a big base of support. That's what CORVA does - we form large coalitions of like-minded people. We have worked on this for the last few years. Randii and I spearheaded that effort by teaching classes to enthusiasts and local representatives for the Johnson Valley draft documents, and we have accumulated many NEPA violations that could result in an eventual court case. Would that cost money? Of course, as we see by the cost of hiring professional lobbyists, there can also be a high cost of hiring experienced, knowledgeable attorneys who have a history of winning NEPA lawsuits.

The two methodologies don't conflict with each other, they compliment each other and bring strength to the community as a whole. Too often we have followed only one path, or concentrated on bringing together only off-roaders, without reaching out to hunters, miners, rural residents....the large community of people who use off-road trails and areas.

Let's watch the success of the lobbyists, while preparing our NEPA objections and appeals. I am happy to work with Steve, Randii, and all the other "NEPA Nerds" to prepare the best comments possible and see where that course leads. NEPA is a process-related approach with a defined timeline. We have to participate in the process now, as the process is happening. Environmentalists have been using (and abusing) NEPA for years and years to win lawsuits, and it works. These same organizations also engage powerful lobbyists in Washington DC, that's why that approach is also needed. We are emulating successes that can be defined, sometimes we don't need to reinvent the wheel.

Let's support all the different actions by people who care about and are concerned about Johnson Valley. And please, stop the rumor-mongering, the negative innuendo and the criticism by focusing on the common good and our common goals.

Someone intimated a couple of weeks ago the CORVA had reached some sort of agreement to give away Johnson Valley. Nothing could be further from the truth, or further from reality, but was formed of what I chose to believe is a misunderstanding. But when I received the questions, I couldn't help but ask myself how this was helping our ultimate goal? How were these accusations helping us defeat the expansion? How was fracturing people, raising ire and frustration, helpful to keeping off-road viable in California?

We may have our different opinions and difference methodologies, but by embracing our differences we can end up with a stronger defense for off-road access. This way everyone wins.
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Old 04-16-2012, 05:10 PM   #22 (permalink)
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There is more than one way to tackle the problem of Johnson Valley, as there is often more than one way to look at an issue.

One group has already spearheaded the way by hiring a lobbyist in Washington DC to do what lobbyist know how best to do. Congratulations to Jeff and ORBA - I'm eager to see what happens.

There are other ways to tackle Johnson Valley as well - by concentrating on the NEPA process, working with local governments and forming coalitions of all the on-the-ground users to form a big base of support. That's what CORVA does - we form large coalitions of like-minded people. We have worked on this for the last few years. Randii and I spearheaded that effort by teaching classes to enthusiasts and local representatives for the Johnson Valley draft documents, and we have accumulated many NEPA violations that could result in an eventual court case. Would that cost money? Of course, as we see by the cost of hiring professional lobbyists, there can also be a high cost of hiring experienced, knowledgeable attorneys who have a history of winning NEPA lawsuits.

The two methodologies don't conflict with each other, they compliment each other and bring strength to the community as a whole. Too often we have followed only one path, or concentrated on bringing together only off-roaders, without reaching out to hunters, miners, rural residents....the large community of people who use off-road trails and areas.

Let's watch the success of the lobbyists, while preparing our NEPA objections and appeals. I am happy to work with Steve, Randii, and all the other "NEPA Nerds" to prepare the best comments possible and see where that course leads. NEPA is a process-related approach with a defined timeline. We have to participate in the process now, as the process is happening. Environmentalists have been using (and abusing) NEPA for years and years to win lawsuits, and it works. These same organizations also engage powerful lobbyists in Washington DC, that's why that approach is also needed. We are emulating successes that can be defined, sometimes we don't need to reinvent the wheel.

Let's support all the different actions by people who care about and are concerned about Johnson Valley. And please, stop the rumor-mongering, the negative innuendo and the criticism by focusing on the common good and our common goals.

Someone intimated a couple of weeks ago the CORVA had reached some sort of agreement to give away Johnson Valley. Nothing could be further from the truth, or further from reality, but was formed of what I chose to believe is a misunderstanding. But when I received the questions, I couldn't help but ask myself how this was helping our ultimate goal? How were these accusations helping us defeat the expansion? How was fracturing people, raising ire and frustration, helpful to keeping off-road viable in California?

We may have our different opinions and difference methodologies, but by embracing our differences we can end up with a stronger defense for off-road access. This way everyone wins.
While I agree the rumors are undoing any good that comes from hard work, I must point out something of importance. Jeff and ORBA is not the driving force, its the umbrella group of CMRC that is doing this. A unified effort of all the different groups (of which CORVA is part of) is how we are making progress. This is not strictly an ORBA campaign, but I can tell you; its killing our time management as we have invested a ton of time on it.

I think most are sick too death of the different groups backstabbing, and innuendo. The facebook posts, the fake screen names, and the shake your hand with one, and stab you in the back with the other mentality that runs repent among the different players and groups. Posturing, propaganda, and release of half truths seems to be the norm for all of the groups.

With this post it appears you would rather save CORVA money for a lawsuit? Why would this not ever be brought up in one of the meetings we have had since last October? (I hope I wrong in this assumption) Why does it have to be those guys are doing it this way... We are doing it this way? While I don't believe a lawsuit is the best answer right now, perhaps in time that may be the case, but why would we wait until action has been taken, and than gamble on a lawsuit, when we can be proactive and try and stop it from ever happening? CORVA has a seat at the table, why would they not discuss this at a meeting and then come and sell the idea as separate on a forum?

Perhaps CORVA needs to be better educated on what we (CMRC) are trying to accomplish, it appears the lines of communication at CORVA in regards to the items discussed at CMRC meetings are not making it back to its membership. This is of serious concern because Jim Woods the CORVA delegate to CMRC, and CORVA president is the CMRC Secretary in so far as I know?

I will take this, and the posts by others as a clear warning that I need to do a better job in making sure all parties understand what is going on with this effort.


Since the question of a NEPA lawsuit is now made present here, I must ask how this could assist in the preservation of Johnson Valley OHV access? I ask this not of malice but of ignorance. My understanding is that most NEPA lawsuits have resulted in a correction of the process and they still took the land in the end even if a lawsuit was successful.

Since this has not been debated in our JV subgroup I think it would be fine to educate me and those watching on how this can help the battle, because I agree, no stone should be left unturned in looking for a solution to the expansion of 29 Palms into the Johnson Valley.

Edit, I felt I should point out that the CMRC JV strategic plan has a line item in the budget for $25,000 in start up capitol in the event the plan fails. At that point it would trigger a new plan be developed to fight the expansion via a lawsuit. All parties voted to support this plan, including CORVA.

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Old 04-16-2012, 06:19 PM   #23 (permalink)
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These are complementary efforts: lobbying and commenting. Both deserve our support. This seems simple enough, especially since both of these efforts are complementary with the original efforts to educate the armed forces and structure the question in scoping so that it really addressed OHV use.

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Since the question of a NEPA lawsuit is now made present here, I must ask how this could assist in the preservation of Johnson Valley OHV access?
At worst, we're delaying the takeover, at best, we're finding fatal flaws that require starting the analysis over again... something that the greenies have used to their advantage before. Sometimes the project is seen as so flawed, that it never moves forward. In the midst of this, we're providing comments on how to make the project less impactful for OHV -- one comment on the Eldorado made the forest reconsider and re-open multiple routes. NEPA-based comments aren't about punctuation (that's be a waste of time) they are about improving the analysis of the document, and failing that, setting it up for appeal.

I appreciate CAMRC, CORVA, and ORBA ... and I know that Cal4, AMA, and other organizations are working together to defend JV, as well.

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Old 04-16-2012, 08:46 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Old 04-16-2012, 09:11 PM   #25 (permalink)
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These are complementary efforts: lobbying and commenting. Both deserve our support. This seems simple enough, especially since both of these efforts are complementary with the original efforts to educate the armed forces and structure the question in scoping so that it really addressed OHV use.


At worst, we're delaying the takeover, at best, we're finding fatal flaws that require starting the analysis over again... something that the greenies have used to their advantage before. Sometimes the project is seen as so flawed, that it never moves forward. In the midst of this, we're providing comments on how to make the project less impactful for OHV -- one comment on the Eldorado made the forest reconsider and re-open multiple routes. NEPA-based comments aren't about punctuation (that's be a waste of time) they are about improving the analysis of the document, and failing that, setting it up for appeal.

I appreciate CAMRC, CORVA, and ORBA ... and I know that Cal4, AMA, and other organizations are working together to defend JV, as well.

Randii

I think I may not have properly expressed my point.

Unified strategic plan created by a large group of OHV users that covers pretty much everything Amy is presenting in a unified voice. CORVA has been part of that discussion. Unity means together not separate.

The plan is not just hire a Lobby firm guys; its an all encompassing document created to allow each group to present the body of work at any time to its membership. That means every detail of the effort to save JV from Lobbying, to Op Ed pieces, to gaining support from local cities, to petitions, to the printing of 22,000 comments to flaws in the Draft EIS, to you name it...Its in there including what we do if we win and have money left, and what we do if we lose and have to file a lawsuit. But we do it together as a unified voice, not as one group doing one thing and another doing something different.

Unified voice as CMRC. Together we are strong, divided we will fail....Again.

This is not an ORBA plan, its a plan created and/or endorsed by ORBA, CORVA, Cal 4Wheel, ASA, AMA national, AMA D 36, AMA D37, CNSA, Hammerking Productions, PFJV, ISA, SEMA, MIC, ARRA, BRC has given input, and a couple Senators and Congressman have even helped craft some of it unknowingly.

I am over it. I can't keep defending a plan your association has not made available to you. I will see what I can do to correct that at our next meeting that's all I can do at this point.

Am I emotional attached to this idea of unity? Maybe so I have worked very hard on it, but its not my plan, its a plan created by a lot of people I hold in high regard, it represents something that excites me, it represents some of the greatest minds in OUR sports working together bouncing ideas, and thinking outside the box. It represents some new ideas from some younger less bitter people who want to help but hate the drama, it represents the first time in my life of off roading not feeling like its a lost cause to fight a land closure, so I get a little fired up.

We can win if we stand together, but its gonna be a hell of a fight, and I want to spend my effort on fighting to save JV, not fighting to keep a group working together.

I have asked a number of questions in this thread and none have been answered but I will ask another. Why do we not have offers of help from specialists in NEPA if it can save JV? I am only the manager I am not a specialists in any of this.

My only Job is to write a monthly Newsletter for the Off Road Business Association after all.
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