Albuquerque, New Mexico - August 20, 2012 - The Village of Jemez Springs and the Jemez River Basin Coalition of Acequias have joined with the New Mexico Off Highway Vehicle Alliance (NMOHVA) in filing an appeal against the Santa Fe National Forest. The groups oppose the Travel Management Decision made by Forest Supervisor Marcia T. Garcia. The decision eliminates all public motorized use on more than 75% of the existing roads and trails in the Santa Fe National Forest. It also bans using a vehicle to retrieve game and vehicle camping on more than 99% of the Forest.
"Most people have no idea how much of the Forest is lost with this decision or how much it will affect them. For example, the decision bans ALL car-camping along Forest Road 376, even on the side of the road opposite the river. That's the most popular camping area in the whole Forest," said Mark Werkmeister for NMOHVA. "This isn't just about OHV's."
"The Village of Jemez Springs views the Travel Management closures as a drastic measure that we believe will have severe economic consequences for the Village," said Mayor Edmund Temple. "As the Village exists as an in-holding within the Santa Fe National Forest, these restrictions to the public's access to public lands pose a threat to the very existence of the Village. Fishermen, hunters, wood cutters, campers, families on day trips, and tourists from around the United States and the world are the life blood of the Village. The Village supports responsible and reasonable restrictions to protect the health of our national forests, but the Village believes these proposed regulations go far beyond that standard.
We are proud the Village and Acequia Coalition joined with us to oppose this decision," said Werkmeister. "We must all work together to protect everyone's right to use our public lands."
The Appeal will be decided by the Regional Forester's office in Albuquerque. The 45 day deadline for ruling on the Appeal is October 4th.
More information is available by visiting www.nmohva.org or by contacting NMOHVA at 505-321-3155.