Eye On Boise

The state most affected

So why did U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman travel all the way to the Idaho state capitol in Boise today to announce the Bush Administration’s new version of the roadless rule?

“This is a state that is the most affected state by the roadless rule in the lower 48, so we thought it was appropriate to come to Idaho to make the announcement today,” Veneman said. “And we also have enjoyed a very close working relationship with both Gov. Kempthorne and Sen. Craig as we have addressed these issues.”

At the statehouse announcement, Veneman was flanked by Craig and Kempthorne, who both lauded the plan to give states a chance to petition for their own, state-specific roadless rules in the next 18 months. If states don’t petition, there’d be no roadless rule, and local forest plans would govern.

Idaho has more than 9 million acres of inventoried roadless land in its national forests, about 17 percent of the state’s land mass.

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Eye On Boise

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