News.bytes
News.bytes
A publication of
Bureau of Land Management in California


Issue date: 9/26/2002

This week in News.bytes:


- NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY this weekend
- DESERT PLANS, DUNES: controversy continues
- NOT FOR EDUCATORS ONLY:
     - PLANT OF THE WEEK - Jepson's onion
     - WILDLIFE TRIVIA: How many miles does a gray whale travel each year?
- SACRED SITES LEGISLATION: Tribes urge governor's signature
- VALLEY RAINBOW: Power line fight goes to Congress
- CADIZ WATER PROJECT: Unexpected delay
- WILDFIRE NEWS:
     - Snapshots: Hazardous fuel successes in California
     - Wildlands-urban interface" - California leads national efforts
- LAW ENFORCEMENT: Pot farms a danger to public
- GRAZING ON PUBLIC LANDS
- HEADLINES AND HIGHLIGHTS, including:
     - West Nile virus hits horses hard
     - "Real life" scenes from movies - on BLM-managed lands
     - Wild burros looking for homes
     - Time capsules
     - Grant money returned
     - Headwaters
     - Public meetings
     - ...and more
- SELECTED UPCOMING EVENTS


National Public Lands Day 2002 logoNATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY this weekend

"VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO HELP RESTORE POPULAR HIKING AREA" (BLM California news release, 09/19/2002)
Volunteers are needed to help clean up the Dead Indian Canyon area within the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument -- this Saturday, Sept. 28, National Public Lands Day.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/84_Monument_NPLD_Cleanup/Conv.htm

"NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY: MITCHEL RANGE IMPROVEMENT PROJECT" (BLM California Web site)
National Public Lands Day event by BLM California's Barstow Field Office.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/barstow/npl_day.html

discarded tires on public land"NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY: EAGLE PASS NEEDS YOUR HELP!" (BLM California Web site)
National Public Lands Day event by BLM California's Needles Field Office will be held Oct. 19, to give area's weather time to cool off for the year.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/needles/npld2002.html

Related: "EAGLE PASS ROAD TO BE CLEANED UP BY LOCAL VOLUNTEERS ON NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY" (BLM California news release, 8/12/02)
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/08/nr/CDDnews72_needles_NPLD_2002/Conv.htm


DESERT PLANS, DUNES: controversy continues

"RECREATION AREA STAYS CLOSED" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 09/26/2002)
Imperial Sand Dunes: "Nearly 50,000 acres of sand dunes popular with Inland off-road enthusiasts will remain closed when the desert recreation season begins on Halloween weekend, federal officials said Wednesday."
http://www.pe.com/localnews/stories/PE_NEWS_nadunes26.a1335.html

Related: "DUNES PLAN PROGRESSING TO REPLACE LAWSUIT'S INTERIM RESTRICTIONS" (BLM California news release, 09/25/2002)
BLM is working to complete land use plan for Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area, but interim restrictions that closed 46,000 acres to off-road use in November 2000, will remain in effect for opening of the recreation season.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/85_Dunes_Restrictions_Remain/Conv.htm

Related: "AREA OF DUNES TO REMAIN CLOSED FOR NOW" (Yuma Sun, 09/26/2002)
Imperial Sand Dunes.
http://www.yumasun.com/artman/publish/story_1842.shtml

"COUNTY PROTESTS FEDERAL DESERT PLAN" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 09/26/2002)
San Bernardino County Supervisors send letter of protest to BLM over proposed Northern and Eastern Mojave plan. "First District Supervisor Bill Postmus requested the protest letter be sent discussing the county's concerns regarding the plan, which range from possible loss of county tax revenue to livestock grazing issues."
http://www.desertdispatch.com/cgi-bin/newspro/viewnews.cgi?newsid1033057707,11278,

"LAWMAKERS PUSHING NORTON FOR ANSWERS ON DESERT MANAGEMENT" (Imperial Valley Press, 09/26/2002)
Congressional representatives send letter to Department of Interior Secretary Gale Norton, "calling for answers to hotly debated desert management plans, including the Imperial Sand Dunes Recreation Area Management Plan."
http://ivpressonline.com/display/inn_news/news04.txt
(Note: the newspaper's link to this article will change on Friday, 9/27/02. To find it again, search for the phrase "Bureau of Land Management" in the newspaper archives at:
http://ivpressonline.com/archives/.)


NOT FOR EDUCATORS ONLY:

Jepson's onion - Plant of the WeekPLANT OF THE WEEK - Jepson's onion
A perennial herb standing 10-16 inches (25-40 cm), with single cylindric leaf more or less the same length as the stem. Inflorescence consists of 20-60 flowers 1/4 to 3/8 inches in length and are white in color with deep pink midveins. Grows from a bulb, 5/8 to 1 inch in size with a red-brown to gray outer coat. ("Special status plants" are those plants whose survival on BLM-managed lands is of concern."
http://www.ca.blm.gov/folsom/folalje.html


Wildlife Trivia - Question markGray whale - trivia questionWILDLIFE TRIVIA QUESTION: How many miles does a gray whale travel each year?"
---->
Anticipated questions: "What do whales have to do with BLM-managed lands?" "How many whales can there be in the desert?" "...or even in Headwaters Forest Reserve?"
Please bear in mind that BLM California also manages the California Coastal National Monument: http://www.ca.blm.gov/coastal/.


SACRED SITES LEGISLATION

"AMERICAN INDIANS PUSH FOR CALIFORNIA BILL TO PRESERVE SACRED SITES" (Associated Press, in San Francisco Chronicle, 09/26/2002)
About 30 American Indians start 700-mile run from Sacramento to site of proposed Glamis, Inc. gold mine on BLM-managed lands in the Imperial Valley. The run publicizes their call for California Gov. Gray Davis to sign SB1828, which "would require local governments to notify a tribe of proposed construction within 20 miles of a reservation and protect from development sacred sites that tribes have used for generations."
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/news/archive/2002/09/26/state0430EDT7796.DTL

Related: "INDIAN RUNNERS STOP AT PECHANGA ANCIENT OAK" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 09/25/2002)
Indian runners pressing Gov. Gray Davis to sign bill further protecting their sacred lands, gather at sacred oak that is in one proposed route for San Diego Gas & Electric power line. Route would cross BLM-managed land and require BLM right-of-way permit.
http://www.pe.com/localnews/southwest/stories/PE_NEWS_nsrunnin2.a1c9a.html

Related: "CALIFORNIA NATIVE AMERICANS WANT LAW PRESERVING SOME LAND AS SACRED" (Fox News, 09/23/2002)
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,63874,00.html



VALLEY RAINBOW: Power-line fight goes to Congress

"POWER LINE LEGISLATION SUBMITTED" (North County Times, 09/20/2002)
San Diego Gas & Electric's Valley Rainbow Interconnect: U.S. Rep. Darryl Issa's proposed legislation would combine two proposed power lines into one route to avoid populated areas, and provide right of way through the Cleveland National Forest. Bill would create an exception to the Forest Service ruling for the proposed power line or lines. Exact route would be determined by BLM and U.S. Forest Service. (This also relates to story above, "Indian runners stop at Pechanga ancient oak.")
http://www.nctimes.net:80/news/2002/20020920/54602.html

Related: "ISSA TURNS TO CONGRESS TO END POWER-LINE FIGHT" (The Press Enterprise, 09/20/2002)
"A two-year war over a San Diego utility's plan to string high-voltage power lines through the Temecula Valley could end before Congress adjourns in November. Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista, said he believes his colleagues will vote to give San Diego Gas & Electric a power-line route on public land through the Cleveland National Forest, far to the west of the miles of populated private property the utility had first targeted."
http://www.pe.com/localnews/southwest/stories/PE_NEWS_nslines20.58221.html


CADIZ WATER STORAGE PLAN

"MWD EXECUTIVE URGES PROJECT DELAY" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 09/26/2002)
"A controversial plan to store water in the S.B. County desert faces an unexpected hurdle .... The top executive of the Metropolitan Water District, in a letter Wednesday to board members, said that concerns over the drought, increased costs and environmental impacts should postpone the Cadiz project indefinitely."
http://www.pe.com/localnews/stories/PE_NEWS_nacadiz26.ee2e.html

"CADIZ DELAY URGED" (Los Angeles Times, 09/26/2002)
Proposed underground water supply plan: "The Metropolitan Water District staff recommended Wednesday that the district's board indefinitely defer the controversial Cadiz water storage program in the Mojave Desert because environmental concerns and a drought on the Colorado River have dramatically reduced the chances it will provide useful quantities of water to Southern California."
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-water26sep26.story


WILDFIRE NEWS

"SNAPSHOTS: SUCCESSES OF BLM HAZARDOUS FUELS PROJECTS: California" (BLM California news, 09/24/2002)
PDF file, 108 kilobytes: Update on BLM California efforts to reduce the threat of wildfires.

"CALIFORNIA LEADS NATION'S EFFORTS ON 'WILDLANDS-URBAN INTERFACE' " (BLM California news release, 08/23/2002)
PDF file, 45 kilobytes: Op-ed article by BLM's national director, Kathleen Clarke, has appeared in a number of news publications.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/newsbytes/2002/pdf_2002/CAFireOp-ed_kclark_092502.pdf


LAW ENFORCEMENT: Pot farms a danger to public

"POT INVASION STUNS PARK OFFICIALS" (Fresno Bee, 09/25/2002)
In the past month, law enforcement officers from BLM and other agencies helped destroy more than 35,000 marijuana plants -- with a street value of more than $140 million -- in Sequoia National Park alone. Pot gardens are often guarded with heavy weapons, and pose a danger to visitors as well as the environment. Tighter security on Mexico-U.S. border has moved more operations north into California, authorities say.
http://www.fresnobee.com/local/story/4540630p-5560042c.html

"FOREIGN DRUG CARTELS IN NORTH STATE INCREASING" (Red Bluff Daily News, 09/25/2002)
Law enforcement authorities across northern California say organized criminal drug activities pose a danger to users of BLM-managed public lands and national forests.
http://www.redbluffdailynews.com/archives/index.inn?loc=detail&doc=/2002/September/25-3803-news3.txt


GRAZING ON PUBLIC LANDS

"MORE THAN DROUGHT HARMS RANGELAND, OFFICIALS SAY" (LA Times, 09/22/2002)
Congress, the public and ranchers blame drought for the bare ground where grasses and other plants once grew on western rangelands. Some career federal land managers say it is instead the result of overgrazing, and decades-old policies by federal land management agencies.
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-grazing22sep22.story

"LIVESTOCK BOOTED TO PROTECT TORTOISE" (Farm Progress, 09/24/2002)
"For the third time, eight public lands livestock grazing permittees must move their cattle on drought-stricken public lands to protect the threatened desert tortoise. Under the terms of the California Desert Conservation Area (CDCA) court order, Interior Secretary Gale Norton and her ...BLM ... must ensure cattle do not graze on nearly half a million acres of public lands from now until Nov. 7."
http://www.farmprogress.com:80/frmp/articleDetail/1,1494,10227+19,00.html


HEADLINES AND HIGHLIGHTS

excerpt from West Nile virus cycle"HORSES HIT HARD BY NILE VIRUS; 5,300 infected, mostly in Midwest -- hundreds killed " (San Francisco Chronicle, 09/22/2002)
"As the human cost of West Nile virus creeps toward 100 deaths this year, the mosquito-borne scourge is taking an unprecedented toll on horses, alarming veterinarians and spreading grief among horse owners throughout America's heartland. " No cases of West Nile virus among horses or wild birds has been reported in California, but Los Angeles County woman somehow contracted the disease last month.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2002/09/22/MN192880.DTL

Related: "FACT SHEET - WEST NILE VIRUS" (BLM national Web site, 09/04/2002)
All wild horses and burros in the Bureau of Land Management's Adopt-a-Horse or -Burro program are being vaccinated for West Nile virus prior to adoption .. and more information on the West Nile virus.
http://www.wildhorseandburro.blm.gov/spotlight/westnile.htm

"PUBLIC MEETINGS SET FOR CACHE CREEK MANAGEMENT PLAN" (BLM California news release, 09/23/2002)
Anyone interested in commenting on the plan can participate in sessions at three locations, on Oct. 11, 15 and 16.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/cachecreek_meetings/Conv.htm

"THE REAL-LIFE LAND OF FAMOUS MOVIE SCENES" (Los Angeles Times, 09/26/2002)
Look carefully enough, and you'll see the same landmarks in an old James Stewart movie, and a Tom Mix Western 25 years earlier. Just one example among dozens of movies shot on lands in the Eastern Sierra managed by BLM California or the Metropolitan Water District. Volunteers for the upcoming Lone Pine Film Festival have set up photo markers at dozens of sites among these hills, so visitors can see scenes from movies alongside the actual sites where they were shot. (Includes photo gallery of movie scenes vs. actual sites.)
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-surround26sep26004439.story

Related: "THE ALABAMA HILLS" (BLM California Web pages)
Includes list and map of some of the movies and commercials filmed or photographed in these public lands managed by BLM California's Bishop Field Office.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/bishop/alabamas.html

"BLM ANNOUNCES FALL HIKING SCHEDULE FOR HEADWATERS" (BLM California news release, 09/21/2002)
BLM park rangers will lead outings into the southern portion of the reserve on Saturdays and Sundays through Nov. 15, or until heavy rains begin. Those interested must make a reservation for a specific day.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/headwatershikes_fall02/Conv.htm

"BOARD WEIGHS LAND RESTRICTIONS" (Bakersfield Californian, 09/24/2002)
Kern County Board of Supervisors hears 3-1/2 hours of public comment from crowd of over 100, for and against Sen. Barbara Boxer's proposed wilderness bill that could affect much BLM California-managed land. Attendees hoped board would send message to Boxer urging local control over federal designation. Resolution required unanimous approval that failed by one vote, of supervisor who said both sides raised valid points. Boxer aide says bill is not likely to get Congressional hearing this year.
http://www.bakersfield.com/local/story/1837856p-1952685c.html

"ROOM FOR ALL ON THE TRAIL" (Los Angeles Times, 09/21/2002)
EDITORIAL: "Forget geopolitical animosities. For real conflict, watch hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers battle over who has the right to use the nation's trails and ... roads that crisscross public land. Fortunately, the [BLM], which oversees 14 million acres in California alone, has just introduced guidelines that should help bring peace to wild America."
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-ed-mtbike21sep21.story

"BLM WILL HOST PUBLIC MEETING ON FORT SAGE BIRD STUDY" (BLM California news release, 09/23/2002)
Meeting Oct. 10 will highlight Information on a bird nesting and demographic study now underway in the Fort Sage Off Highway Vehicle Area.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/birdmeeting_sept/Conv.htm

"BLM RESOURCE ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETS OCT. 17-18 IN SPARKS" (BLM California news release, 09/27/2002)
Land use planning issues highlight the agenda of BLM's Northeast California Resource Advisory Council.
http://www.ca.blm.gov/news/2002/09/nr/racmeeting_october02/Conv.htm

"BLM SHOWCASES WILD BURROS IN ORLAND" (Red Bluff Daily News, 09/26/2002)
About 15 wild burros will be looking for new homes at BLM public adoption Saturday, during the third annual "Longears Cele'bray'tion," a show and competition event for donkey and mule owners.
http://www.redbluffdailynews.com/display/inn_news/news52.txt

"BOARD RETURNS GRANT MONEY" (The Sacramento Bee, 09/24/2002)
"Residents and farmers on an Auburn-based conservation panel are sending a $554,500 state grant back to Sacramento, saying the money would go toward duplicating existing studies of the American River watershed. The U.S. Forest Service, federal Bureau of Land Management, California Regional Water Quality Control Board and El Dorado County Planning Department all wrote letters of support for the grant."
http://www.sacbee.com/content/news/environment/story/4528577p-5548084c.html

"TIME CAPSULE FASCINATION IS A CULTURE THING" (Imperial Valley Press, 09/21/2002)
BLM's El Centro Field Office archaeologist among those commenting on Brawley's planned time capsule.
http://ivpressonline.com/archives/index.inn?loc=detail&doc=/2002/September/21-1012-news04.txt


Wildlife Trivia - Question markWILDLIFE TRIVIA ANSWER: How many miles does a gray whale travel each year?"
Gray whales travel over 6,000 miles a year, migrating from Baja California to Alaska. {:-)}<-
Learn more about gray whales in the BLM California wildlife database:
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmcawildlife.nsf/siteurl/34909591?OpenDocument
(See note under "Selected Upcoming Events" below about following links to our secure database server.)


SELECTED UPCOMING EVENTS
(Note: the Upcoming Events Web site is now on a more secure server, and your browser may state that "You are about to view pages over a secure connection" and ask you to "Trust a Security Certificate" from the Department of Interior that hosts this site. To view the pages, you must select "Yes" or "OK" for both questions.)

09/26/2002 - Ridgecrest Steering Committee
BLM Ridgecrest Field Office
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/23127947?OpenDocument

09/28/2002 - Dead Indian Canyon Cleanup - Volunteers Needed
Palm Desert
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/16391852?OpenDocument

10/04/2002 - Rails to Trails Festival- 2002
Historic Susanville Railroad Depot
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/29349051?OpenDocument

10/05/2002 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Advisory Committee Meeting
Palm Desert City Hall Council Chambers
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/89730831?OpenDocument

10/10/2002 - Fort Sage Bird Study Public Meeting
Susanville
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/17968414?OpenDocument

10/11/2002 - Central California Advisory Council public meeting
Bishop
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/13190662?OpenDocument

10/11/2002 - Cache Creek Management Plan Public Meeting
Lakeport
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/66894027?OpenDocument

10/15/2002 - Cache Creek Management Plan Public Meetings
Woodland
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/67853972?OpenDocument

10/16/2002 - Cache Creek Management Plan Public Meeting
Colusa
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/46930190?OpenDocument

10/17/2002 - Northeast California Advisory Council meeting
Sparks, Nevada
https://doi1.ios.doi.gov/blmEvents.nsf/siteurl/67111010?OpenDocument

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