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I need your thoughts, ideas, direction and input

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Tonight I found out about the fees the BLM is extorting from one of our promoters for a ride. Nine thousand dollars. 9 grand for a hundred or so riders to ride thru our desert on public roads and trails. Ten thousand people could ride the exact route tomorrow without permits if it wasnt a promoted ride. But let 100 riders go thru on a commercial venture and we need to have studies to study the impact of the dust or the tires or the fleas or...........make something up, they do.

We've been hearing about the coming day when we wouldn't be able to ride our deserts. The day seems fast approaching.

I've sat on boards, commitees, and associations before. There's nothing worse than someone coming in and pounding the table and not knowing what they want. I'm pissed off right about now. I had to wait 3 hours to write this post just to calm down. I want to go pound on a table, I want to let people know this isn't acceptable, fair, or perhaps even legal. Buddy Percin, past President of District 37 Dualsport, put it in plain english. We have to sue them, and that takes money. Groups like the Center for Biological Diversity are filing lawsuits and closing deserts, mountains trails, canyons, and anyplace else people go to commune with nature.

I'm going to Washington D.C. on March 6th to participate in the AMA intro to Washington seminar. I'll have an opportunity to meet congressional members from CA. The problem is, I'm new to this. I need some info from you guys that have been at this a while. I'm trying to get up to speed as quickly as I can, but for $h*t$ sake, we're running out of time.

I need to develop an outline of what we want, why we are entitled to it, plans allready in place that may need to be revisited, or any other thoughts you may have. I'll put things in an outline before I go. Possibly an info sheet, something easy to read, maybe a few bullet points. I dont want to get too wordy in print, it'll end up in the trash anyway. But I would like to drop an info sheet on a desk or two. That way if I do get a minute of someones time I can show them we arent a rag tag bunch of hooligans ranting and raving. A sense of organization would go a long way.

In the immediate sense of things, who is the person that sets the fees, and where is their schedule of fees. The fee schedule seems to be highly subjective. For example, they charge us to monitor an area, but use volunteers. Using taxes as a way to deprive the citizenry use of a public area is unacceptable. Fees are understandable. But a reasonable person in this circumstance wouldnt expect to pay nine thousand dollars to ride a trail that anyone else can for free. Fees are another way to close off riding areas. That works out to about $100.00 dollars for every rider on this particular ride. We allready pay a gas tax, green sticker fee and since this is a street legal vehicle ride only, license fee and road tax. This is equivelant to charging tour bus operators a fee to drive tourists into the Grand Canyon, or to Death Valley. They do pay fees, but not $100.00 per person.

I want to go pound (in a nice way) on someones desk next week. I think it's the Barstow office. I want to go meet these people, good or bad, friend or foe. I know we have both in the BLM. They're people doing a job. I like people. Maybe they have some ideas how we can help them help us.

I look forward to your ideas, direction and insight.

Kieth Huff

AMA District 37 Rider Rep/Newsletter Ed.

(562) 598-9748

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Keith, not to stir up the pot more, but I came across this and about stopped my heart:

http://www.calwild.org/responsiblerecreation.php

I ride out in Joshua Tree and surrounding areas all the time as I have a place in Palm Desert. It is unbelievable riding and not real popular destination for dualsports and OHV's so I thought I was safe for a while.

I think you and Buddy are correct when you say we have to sue them! I can't see coming to some agreement with these enviros...they are just too well funded. They spread lies to scare people but you gotta hand it to them, they are very well organized and have "creative" ways to raise money. I heard that the Sierra Club Calendar sells millions. People get something for their "donation"...a calendar with great photography and care little to learn about what they really stand for.

I think our industry needs more fund rasing ideas. People have a hard time just cutting a check wihout seeing some benefit in return. Giving to the BRC, AMA, etc. is great but it seems like guys have no problem dropping $8K + for a new KTM but won't give $100 to groups like this. I think more pressure needs to be on the manufacturers to donate a portion of sales to these groups...like FMF does with the sales of the Q pipe. I just bought one for the DRZ not because it's the best pipe, but because it's a good pipe and they support our sport! Hell, even hike up the fees a couple hundred on a new bike to cover it. I think Cycle Gear even donates a portion of their total sales each year to BRC. If all parts shops donated a small portion of sales to one group like BRC..think about how many parts shops are out there and how much gear they sell!

Anyway, just my opinion, but I think we need a good plan of organization and a means of raising the appropriate cash. I have been working hard at getting the word out about petitioning the Gov to remove the CARB emmisions restrictions here in CA but somehow I think that we are just too small of a group to be heard. We will see. I have a close relative who works in Sacramento with the Governator and it's been tough getting info/advice out of him. Politicians won't stick their necks out to support small groups...especially those seen as anti-environment.

Kudos to you for doing so much! We need more people with ideas and time to get pissed! :)

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Buddy Percin, past President of District 37 Dualsport, put it in plain english. We have to sue them, and that takes money

This has been my crusade for years. Gentle persuasion does not work. We must litigate to defend our rights, while keeping up with the political and public relations effort. I give to the BRC, CORVA and ORBA.

My question on the current issue is "what has changed, if anything, recently?" If the $9k bill is a recent demand from the BLM, then what caused then to suddenly hike the fees? A new law, a decision to enforce or reinterpret an old law? The BLM and all govt. agencies are very legalistic. They are rule obsessed. It should be possible to find out why the bill is now so much larger than in the past.

R

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I just want to explode :thumbsup::thumbsup::cry::):D:lol: we have to become as united as posssible and get this stuff in court! BRC all the way... Keith your the man thank you for the fight, EM I would love to get us all together and plan a fight that will stop these Bastards in there tracks. :):p:D:D:o;):D:D

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Welcome to Kaliforniastan! :) :) :p:D:D:o

I bet they dont charge the Eco Nazis $9,000. to have a large group of hikers go through BLM land! ;):D:D

I agree 100% with a litigation strategy. Pumping thousand of dollars into a BRC program without a heavy litigation strategy is pointless! I am not impressed with the current BRC strategy!

I have yet to hear them defend out trails by arguing that we are preserving the environment around our trails systems and that 100 miles of 30" single track only takes 30 acres (the equivelant of a good size Super Walmart) and not 20,000. acres as the Eco Nazis claim we use up for those same 100 miles of trails! :D:thumbsup::thumbsup::cry::lol:

They are also not defending our OHV fees and taxes collected for managing the OHV trails & use. It is not for lack of effort but the success that the BRC can claim is insignificant. AMA is mostly sitting back and providing mild lip service. :D:lame::lame::lame:

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EM I would love to get us all together and plan a fight that will stop these Bastards in there tracks.

This is something I've been thinking about quite a bit lately. We have a lot of like minded folks on TT that are willing and able to get involved, but are also lacking information and direction about what exactly they should do. All of us here ride bikes for fun and have busy lives. Unlike the enviros, activism is not our reason for being here. But as we've seen over and over again, without money and involvement, we are unlikely to make any progress on public land use issues.

I think it would be helpful for a TT group (and folks from any other board) to meet and discuss strategy. But I also feel that we need to have some BRC, CORVA, CTUC and perhaps ORBA involvement too. I'd like to hear their input on this stuff because they do have experience and also just ranting among ourselves probably won't accomplish much. I am especially interested in hearing about why these organizations have not taken a more aggressive approach to litigation. Bill Dart and I have traded emails on this topic and he does have some good points that I had not considered. It all comes down to making the most of the available resources. Maybe a TT+ conference call would work best because it would minimize the time burden on everyone. I could arrange this.

Afterwards, I think it would be worthwhile to contact and speak with BLM, USFS so that we can at least understand why things are the way they are. Before we can move for change, we must understand how we got here in the first place. I've found USFS folks to be very helpful and reponsive on these issues. No experience with the BLM.

Thoughts?

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On line Chat room meeting would make more sense. :)

AT&T and others charge insane rates for conference calls! :)

The thousand dollars saved on a conference call could easily go towards BRC litigation efforts if they have any active case. :p

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talk with some one from NOHVCC (sp?) and Bill Chapin from cycle conservation club in michigan. they do alot of work like this.

in the mean time i am joining brc. i am sick of this crap.

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The thousand dollars saved on a conference call could easily go towards BRC litigation efforts if they have any active case.

Ugh, maybe in 1960, but not today. It would be an 800 number anyways so not a problem.

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I beg to differ I had a 1 hour long session with 4 members on an ATT conference call last year that cost $230.00 . Charge per minute was $0.77 per line. The total minutes used was 262 minutes. Just looked at my bill saved on my PC. Oh Yeah it was an 800 number! :)

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I still ride with guys that bristle about the thought of spending 50 bucks on an AMA or BRC membership. They drive out to the desert in a 30K truck, a 10K trailer and another 10-15K in bikes. All we can do is keep talking to them, hopefully they'll get the message. We (District 37 Dualsport) completely depleted our LA-B-Vegas fund last year on this type if litigation. I sat there in the room and saw the checks being written to fight specific lawsuits. I know the AMA does something. I'm the AMA, I've done something. If you've ridden a promoter ride here in District 37, you're the AMA and you've done something, a portion of your entry fee goes to legal defense. If you benefitted from the grace period to get a street license plate on your dirtbike here in CA, thank BRC and the AMA. They put pressure on the state to give a grace period. It's a big country, there are regional fighs everywhere. The AMA and BRC are funded by us.

The number one enemy to our cause is us. Riders are independant by nature. But if we can become a voting body we'll have clout. I've been to Sacramento, I've talked to high level directors. They are sticking their neck out if they support offroades. They know it. We have to make it worth their while.

It's not just dirbikers. It's Jeepers, snowmobiles, mountain bikers, and even hikers in some places. We need to unify. We need to vote, and let them know we're voting.

Now who set the friggin fees here in CA on this desert ride? I need a name, a bosses name, addresses, phone numbers, fax numbers.

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Keith - I think you need to get your hands on the law or BLM policy that allows Motorcycle groups to be financially abused like this. You could then look to see if this policy or law is applied even handedly to other groups. For example: What is the fee for the Audubon Society to drive their vehicles into areas for large bird watching gatherings? The Sierra Club for it's Hikes and other events? If we are being treated unfairly, it will be apparent.

Good luck and Thanks for stepping up top the plate.

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Keithco,

Talk with Mr. Tonkiss on Tuesday. The info I heard is the offending BLM office is the Needles division. The BLM Barstow office has treated Mr. Pilon the same way the as District for the LAB2V permits. This was a discussion topic at the Ocotillo Club ride Friday and Saturday nights.

I agree that it's an outrage for an organized tour to be charged nearly $10k to use public roads.

I think this would be the best approach to take in DC with folks we elect to represent us.

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