April 30, 2010

Boulder-White Clouds Bill Introduced In The Senate

Crapo, Risch bring Simpson's CIEDRA legislation before colleagues

Washington, D.C. - Idaho Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch today introduced Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson's CIEDRA bill on the Boulder-White Clouds in the U.S. Senate. The Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act (CIEDRA) seeks to bring certainty to land management questions in the Boulder and White Cloud Mountains while preserving livelihoods and recreational access for sportsmen and off-road vehicle users.

"We have been working with Idaho leaders to make sure that water language in the new bill maintains state water sovereignty and supports existing water agreements in Idaho," said Crapo.
"This CIEDRA bill releases over 130,000 acres of central Idaho wilderness study land that has been managed as de facto wilderness. Returning it to multiple use will provide recreational and economic opportunities. It is also important to note that we will continue to work with all stakeholders to make improvements as this legislation moves forward."

Like the CIEDRA legislation that Simpson has introduced in the U.S. House, the Senate version of the bill releases 131, 616 acres of wilderness study areas (WSAs) back to full multiple use and creates three wilderness areas in the Sawtooth and Challis National Forests. As part of the agreement, local counties and communities have received approximately $6 million for economic development efforts and various projects including recreational access and medical equipment and services. The legislation codifies recreational, outfitting and grazing opportunities, as well as offering some ranchers the option of retiring grazing permits for private compensation. As part of the agreement, the Sawtooth National Recreational Area has also received recreational grants total totaling $1.6 million.