Originally Posted by Paddle Iraq
Its unfortunate that AW pulled their support for the bill. My guess is that they received pressure through the Outdoor Alliance from other conservation groups because of the opinions of non-boating big dollar donors.
The real issue is that the general public has a vision that Yellowstone's rivers (roadside rivers in particular) will be filled with multi-colored rafts like areas such as Brown's Canyon and the Snake River Canyon. The reality is that no one is advocating for that, but the park service has refused to have a conversation about boating at all and therefor the only options are either legislative or judicial.
This bill forces NPS to have a conversation about boating. It does not open the floodgates to unlimited boating, but rather requires the park service to allow boating in accordance with the NPS mission of preserving our national parks for the enjoyment of this generation and generations to come.
Now would be a great time to contact AW and let them know that you support the River Paddling Protection Act. Contact your senator too, especially if you live in Montana, Oregon, Washington or Louisiana.
Any evidence to support the accusations against AW? You yourself mentioned the wildly inconsistent components attached to the current bill...even though that could change in conference.
Also one other caveat...the park service doesn't have a mandate to preserve our parks for our enjoyment.....they have a conflicted mandate for visitor experience and resource protection. It may seem small but it is not worded, as I understand, for one to inherently support the other. Its a reality that has haunted the park service and its decisions for decades.
I would like to think the park could open the rivers/creeks/canyons to specific use that does not affect the resource or other users in a deleterious manner. Unfortunately I have seen consistent evidence that such an ideal isn't always easily met with the NPS complex culture, history and influences. This bill has components that are prime example of how complex something simple can be. IMHO.
Also out of curiosity....why the interest in the specific states?