From: alra@governance.net
Subject: This is important to all landowners nationwide.

Land Rights Network
American Land Rights Association
PO Box 400 – Battle Ground, WA 98604
Phone: 360-687-3087 – Fax: 360-687-2973 
E-mail: alra@landrights.org or alra@governance.net 
Web Address: http://www.landrights.org 
Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE – Washington, DC 2000
Rim of the Valley Will Put Landowners Under Siege

This is important to all landowners nationwide.

Massive new parks bill would eventually cost well over $2 billion and affect over 200,000 landowners (we have the list).

This is about converting 500,000 acres of ground into a huge new National Park.  It is about converting all or parts of two National Forests into National Parks.

The Forest Service is pushing people out but nothing like the Park Service.  They don’t want people.  They really hate private landowners.  

If we allow them to convert National Forests into National Parks in California, what will prevent them from taking your National Forest and making it a non use National Park.

The Park Service is famous for its land grabbing and regulatory technique.  
One example that Santa Monica Mountains NRA is well known for is for being the park where the Park Service was sued and ultimately had to pay large damages for initiating a raid against an innocent rancher, Donald Scott, who was killed in the raid.  All because the Park Service wanted his land.  The Park Service had claimed that Scott was growing marijuana on his land.  It was not true.  The agency was trying to gain the land using the drug forfeiture laws.

Think about this. 

They say it is just a study bill, so what’s the problem  

HR 355, the Rim of the Valley bill, funds a Park Service study to see if the Park Service should get more land, more money, more employees and more power.  

Let’s see.  Can anyone guess how this study is likely to come out?

What self respecting bureaucracy, when offered a chance for more land, more money, more employees and more power, would turn down this opportunity.

It almost never happens.  The Park Service always wants more land, more money, more people and more power.

And all of this is being done without the citizens of Los Angeles seeing a map of the proposed area.   You’ve got to insist that your Congressman get a map with showing that boundaries and all the private land.

Take a look at www.landrights.org.  We have good maps there.  Ask your Congressman to go to the website and print out the map.  If he wants a larger version, he can print it out if he has the equipment, or call us.  We’ll send a larger version.

155,000 landowners in LA County and 50,000 more landowners in Ventura County are affected.


Action Items:

----1.  Call your Congressman.  Ask for new hearings on the Rim of the Valley.  Any Congressman can be called at (202) 225-3121.  Urge them to vote no on spending as much as $2 billion on a Park Service of 500,000 acres in a new area when the Park Service cannot take care of the existing Santa Monica Mountains NRA or a lot of other areas.  It has not paid many landowners it has strangled in the Santa Monica Mountains yet after 27 years.  

Insist that your Congressman commit to voting against the Rim of the Valley until he sees a quality map and has a full understanding of the likely costs involved. 

The Park Service is behind by over $5,000,000,000 in just basic health and safety-deferred maintenance for parks nationwide.  They need to take care of our existing parks before they make big new ones.

If you live outside of California you have a lot of power.  As few as 10 calls to a Congressman from Virginia about an issue like this is enough to get him going on your side.

-----2.  Chuck Cushman just testified about abuses of eminent domain and condemnation by the Park Service on the Appalachian Trail.  Now the Park Service wants land acquisition and condemnation authority on many other trails.  The old saying is true, “Those that fail to remember history are bound to repeat it.”  Go to www.landrights.org on the home page to get a copy of the testimony.

-----3.  Want a map of the Rim of the Valley?  Go to www.landrights.org and you have a huge number of choices of maps.  Print one out and send it to your Congressman.

-----4.  If you live in California, call the following newspapers to ask them to publish a map of the proposed Rim of the Valley Park Service area.  A map is vital to local residents.  They have no idea what is coming at them.
Only the Daily News has even published a story about the Rim of the Valley to our knowledge.  And no paper has printed a map.  

When you call, ask for the editor who handles the National Park Service, or land issues, or Rim of the Valley.

Los Angeles Daily News – (818) 713-3000 or (661) 257-5251

Los Angeles Times – (213) 237-7000

Ventura County Star –  (805) – 650-2900 and (805) 494-0730

The Acorn – (818) 706-0266

Associated Press – (213) 626-1200

-----5.  Send a copy of this message to at least 5 other people.

-----6.  Rep. David Drier (R-CA) is a co-sponsor of the Rim of the Valley.

As such, to some degree he makes the bill bi-partisan and insulates it from criticism.   His Republican allies will sign on without reading the bill carefully or looking at a map.  

You must deluge his office with calls, faxes and e-mails over the next week and then do it at least once a week urging him to drop his sponsorship and withdraw his support.  Phone: (202) 225-2305.  FAX:  (202) 225-7018.
E-mail:  Internet:  http://drier.house.gov/

Key Staff:
Brad Smith – brad.smith@mail.house.gov
Ryan Maxson – ryan.maxson@mail.house.gov
Alisa Do – alias.do@mail.house.gov

Vince Erfe – vince.erfe@mail.house.gov
Robert Lawrence – Robert.Lawrence@mail.house.gov
Lindsay Moorhead – lindsay.moorhead@mail.house.gov
Ryan Rogers – ryan.rogers@mail.house.gov

Mark Harmsen  - mark.harmsen@mail.house.gov
(626) 852-2626
Donna Jimenez – donna.jimenez@mail.house.gov
(626) 852-2626
Cheryl Lynn – Cheryl.lynn@mail.house.gov
(626) 852-2626

-----7.  Contact American Land Rights at alra@landrights.org if you have information or contacts with e-mail addresses in the LA area.  The key is to get a map in the hands as many people as possible.  The threat is looming and the locals have never been told.

-----8.  Call American Land Rights at (360) 687-3087 for films, books and copies of Congressional Testimony regarding National Parks and land acquisition.  We have 27 years of history saving landowners in giant Federal land grabs.

Besides calling, faxing and e-mailing your personal Congressman, it is especially important to make calls to the Congressmen listed below.  If you don’t have your Congressman’s fax number, call and ask for it.  Remember, any Congressman may be called at (202) 225-3121.

Of particular importance are David Drier, Chairman Pombo, and Parks Subcommittee Chairman Stevan Pearce.

Rep Adam Schiff (D-CA) (Author)
Rep David Dreier (R-CA)     
Rep George Miller (D-CA)
Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA)

House Resources Committee members listed below.


You might say, they’ll never buy all those people out.  That is likely true.  But they’ll buy a lot of them out.  Certainly all the vacant land as happened in the Santa Monica Mountains NRA.  But they’ll take many properties with homes on them.

Then they strangle the rest with red tape and new regulations.  Even additional costs and taxes.

The Park Service has been a nightmare for landowners in Santa Monica Mountains.  Relations with landowners and others who traditionally used the area have always been bad and continue that way.

Santa Monica Mountains NRA was supposed to be a “string of pearls” with most land left in private hands.  But that concept largely went away as the Santa Monica Mountains NRA gradually grew.  More and more landowners were wiped out.  

The National Park Service promised they would protect private property owners and that most private land would not be purchased.  However, they continually expand their appetite so the scope and cost of the NRA just keeps increasing.

The Park Service said Santa Monica Mountains would cost $155 million dollars in 1978.  Today it is over $1 billion . . . . and counting.

The Santa Monica Mountains NRA surrounded thousands of landowners preventing them from getting access.  Then they bought out the major landowners and just left the small landowners to twist in the wind unable to sell or use their land.  Numerous complaints have been filed about the Park Service creating hardships and doing nothing about it.

That is what will happen in the Rim of the Valley Corridor.  It will start with a small scope and gradually increase over time until the Federal Government and the National Park Service take over huge portions of the mountains around Los Angeles.

Why else is the Rim of the Valley Corridor bill (HR 355) so important?

It will threaten thousands of landowners and permittees in the mountains around Los Angeles.  It will threaten private owners and Forest Service permittees in the Angeles National Forest and may threaten owners in the Los Padres and San Bernardino National Forests as well.  

When the Park Service takes over a Forest Service area, landowners and recreation users lose.  The Park Service does not like private uses and has almost no permit system.  

HR 355 will set a standard nationwide for corridor and greenway bills involving many urban and rural communities.  It will likely lead to corridor measures in other National Forests.  If you like the notion of viewsheds and soundsheds, you love the Rim of the Valley Corridor bill.   If they pass it in California, it will be hard to stop in other areas.

HR 355 is a “study” bill.  But it is much cheaper and easier to stop the study bill than to stop the authorizing bill that will almost certainly come later.  

If you don’t live anywhere near Los Angeles, why should you care?  Because these studies are the first step toward a Federal land grab in your area.  They are the camel’s nose under the tent.   

Even if you live in Maine, Utah or South Carolina, a few calls to your Congressman can make a huge difference.  As few as ten letters in a Congressional district will get that Congressman thinking about why he should vote for this bill.  Usually he will get very few calls in support from greens in your state.  So a few calls like yours really count.

Any Congressman can be reached at the same number by calling the Capital Switchboard at (202) 225-3121.  Ask for the Congressman you are calling when the switchboard operator answers. When their staff answers the phone, ask for the person who handles National Parks or Resources Committee matters or HR 355.

HR 355 passed the Senate last year so we’ll have our work cut out for us.  It also passed the Resources Committee last year.  The new Committee list is below.   It is vital that you contact the Committee Members.

HR 355 is really creating a monster new national park.  The size is huge and the cost will be even larger.   The size could be a series of corridors with a total length over 300 miles and costing you, the taxpayer over $2 billion dollars.  

Ultimately what the Park Service will want is a giant network of corridors, some very wide, covering all the mountains around the North and West parts of Los Angeles and part of Ventura Counties.  Some of these corridors will likely mean the conversion of multiple-use lands managed by the US Forest Service to the National Park Service management.   

The proposed new Park Service area is likely to cost over $2 billion in additional dollars.  That could be grossly understated.  The funding required would detract from existing National Parks that are already strapped for funds for basic health, safety maintenance and visitor services.

House Resources Committee -  

All can be called at the Capital Switchboard at  (202) 225-3121.  You can fax the committee at (202) 225-5929.  Be sure to put the Congressman’s name on it.  (We’re only listing those Members who may be open minded about this issue and willing to listen)  It is good to follow up your call with a short e-mail or fax.  Surface mail takes as much as four to six weeks to arrive because the Anthrax inspections.


Richard Pombo (R-CA)  Chairman
Don Young (R-AK)
Elton Gallegly (R-CA)
Ken Calvert (R-CA)
Barbara Cubin (R-WY)

George Radanovich (R-CA)
Walter Jones Jr. (R-NC)
Chris Cannon (R-UT)
John Peterson (R-PA)
Jim Gibbons (R-NV)

Mark Souder (R-IN)
Greg Walden (R-OR)
Tom Tancredo (R-CO)
J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ)
Jeff Flake (R-AZ)

Rick Renzi (R-AZ)
Stevan Pearce (R-NM) – New Chairman of the Parks Subcommittee.
Devin Nunes (R-CA) 
Henry Brown (R-SC)
Thelma Drake (R-VA)

Luis Fortuno (R-PR)
Cathy McMorris (R-WA)
Bobby Jindal (R-LA)
Louie Gohmert (R-TX)


Solomon Ortiz (D-TX)
Charlie Melancon (D-LA)
Dan Boren (D-OK)
Stephanie Herseth (D-SD)
Dennis Cardoza (D-CA)

If you live in California, call at least three friends to ask them to call.

Please forward this message as widely as possible.

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