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Old 11-11-2010   #11
hojo's Avatar
Lakewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,234
I would warn that TU could easily come out against boaters with the claim that boats and paddles harm the trout habitat. I'm not suggesting that boaters do any such thing. It is easy, however, for a group with an agenda and funding to see boaters as competition to fishing and use an attack scheme that I suggested above. Think Baptists & Bootleggers. Shaw could throw money and nonsense "research" at an organization like TU in an effort to "protect" a stretch of water.

On the river, I can abandon who I am and what I've done. However brief it lasts, while on the river I am nothing important and everything insignificant. I am flotsam, and happy to be so.
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Old 11-11-2010   #12
They call me Jon
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 07
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 65
I signed it, I would like the plate, being a kayaker and fisher in the CO rivers.


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Old 11-11-2010   #13
The next zone, .
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,200
Originally Posted by Meng View Post
Thanks to those above posting on what they know about TU/CTU!

Personally, as long as the organization stays out of the right to float issue and does not support the Shaw side of the debate I am fine with backing 'em.

River issues extend beyond access and there are organizations like AW that direct their focus there. Frankly, keeping goals focused in the NGO world allows more of an opportunity to accomplish those goals. You cant work on everything. I back the conservation, water quality and restoration component of their mission. It might not contribute to where I put in and takeout but it makes a good contribution to healthier river systems which benefits everyone.

Chris - TU"s position on the "right to float" discussion is NOT on the side of boaters.. In reality TU is controlled by a good ol boy - shaw type of contingent that would like nothing more than to limit access to all private sections of water to who the landowner feels should be on/over it... If they change this position TU themselves say they will loose about 50% of their paying membership....

It it correct to say that TU does not support anyone's "right to float" and never will. More likely any money they gain will help the fisherfolks who own river front property (like shaw who is a TU member) exclude boaters from boating over their fishin property..

I would be careful what you wish for as I have seen first hand what TU is all about and TU does not support any type of boating access...

So if you want to support TU fine but dont think that this plate in any way helps us boaters gain any right to float and your money will most likely work against the next right to float push..
"I feel better than any other time when I am in the mountains and uh I cant explain it ya know...." - Shawn Farmer..........
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Old 11-11-2010   #14
nmalozzi's Avatar
Front Range, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 330
No offense, but a lot of what I'm reading here sounds like speculation. The only thing I am seeing is that they want to protect rivers and the ecosystems in and around them. Also, it seems to me like there are a number of fisherman who float while fishing. So the argument on right to float could go in that direction as well.

Personally, if I loose my right to float because a riverway is being hurt by said floating (and can be scientifically proven) then I am fine with that. I would rather not float a river if it means that ecosystem will be destroyed because of it. Not saying floating does in fact the cause this harm. However, if it was presented to me that it does, and the facts were in order then I'd happily refrain.

If anyone has some direct proof (more then he said she said) that TU has funneled money into efforts that prevent people from floating then I'll happily turn down the $25 fee to get the plate, and add that money to my yearly AW donation. Otherwise, it seems to me like they are just trying to conserve wildlife and rivers, and I see nothing wrong with that.
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Old 11-11-2010   #15
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Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 683
Where is Ole' river? Being a fly angler and someone at the forefront of access issues in CO it would be good to get his perspective.
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Old 11-11-2010   #16
Meng's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 787
Red - you know I would be on the frontlines of fighting threats to our right to float and I would never give anything to individuals, companies or organizations that opposed a right to float!

CTU is officially NEUTRAL on the issue. The plate funds will go to river restoration. From speaking with an individual who has been a professional river advocate in CO for decades, I feel comfortable saying that the access issue will remain a neutral one at the CTU board level. This does not mean individual members won't have personal opinions.

I support AW through direct membership donations. I am not a CTU member and wont become one. However, I appreciate much of the good work they do for river protection and yes, I do endorse a license plate effort that will generate funds to work on river restoration in Colorado. Good for the economy, good for rivers, no increased threat to access.
American Whitewater's website and river stewardship projects are funded by paddlers. Please join, renew, or make a donation to help us protect whitewater rivers in Colorado and nationwide.
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Old 11-11-2010   #17
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 350
I had already signed the petition early on. After reading this thread now, I decided to look for Trout Unlimited's stances on various issues, and could not find anything that conflicts with CWA. To the contrary, here is Colorado Whitewater Association supporting the signing of this petition, through Facebook:

CWA on Facebook
"Please sign the Colorado Trout Unlimited petition for a "Protect Our Rivers" license plate - it will help support CTU's work with rivers, and Colorado Whitewater too! They need signatures ASAP!"-CWA
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Old 11-11-2010   #18
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 113
Here's a link to the Colorado Council of TU (CTU), they are the ones pushing for the plate.
CTU - Home

To give a couple examples of CTU's work
-Defeating Two Forks
-Mitigation to "use it or lose it" water rights, basically makes it easier for a water owner to leave the water in the river.
-Abandoned mine clean up liability, now volunteer groups can work to clean up mine sites, previously prevented by liability.

Make no mistake, they are trout/salmon conservation group with most members being fly fisherman. Not class V boaters. If you want a boater plate, get your butt involved with CWWA or AW and lobby for that plate.
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Old 11-11-2010   #19
Eagle, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 185
FWIW... Paul Tudor Jones II - owner of the Blue River Ranch between Spring Creek and Gore putin -AKA Jurassic Park - is a regular $10K plus donor to TU.

And Texas developer Lewis W. Shaw II is a Life Member.
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Old 11-11-2010   #20
Randaddy's Avatar
Eastern Slope, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1980
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,406
There's fifty different plates in Colorado. All you need are the requisite signatures and a legislator to sponsor the bill (or they might have to put it in the general file with a certain number of signatures, I'm not sure about Colorado law) and it gets voted on just like the rest of them were, yes, yes, yes. If it supports a charitable contribution and can fund itself they all vote yes in Colorado.

If the signatures for a "Whitewater" Colorado license plate were collected, I bet lots of people would vote for it, including legislators that voted against the Shaw-inspired House bill last year. It's an easy way to show that they support whitewater recreation without having to turn on their rich constituents and their riverside mansions.

The money could go to Colorado Whitewater, or something general enough to not conflict in the right to float issue. Either way, I'd love to see a raft or kayak running a waterfall on a Colorado license plate!

Anyone interested in putting this together with me send me a PM. I've worked in an out-of-state state legislature and am sure I can navigate the process. I'd just love to have anyone who knows a legislator who supports this kind of thing, or just someone committed to some grassroots signature gettin' to team up with so it can happen sooner than later.

Let Shaw keep his "Protect Our Rivers" plate. I want a plate that says "Whitewater" or "Paddling Rivers" or "Huck That Shit". The picture could be a play park in a Colorado town with people drinking beer on the river bank....

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