"GOP Plan Would Open More Public Land To Off-Road Vehicles"

"Motorcyclists and ATV riders are revved up by a Republican plan that would remove restrictions on motorized access to 43 million acres of public land nationwide, while environmentalists say it would be a big mistake.

It's part of a broader debate on Capitol Hill over whether Congress should move to increase recreational opportunities on the nation's vast holdings of public land.

"Our public lands are intended to be multi-use in order to give the public full access to America's great outdoors," said Republican Rep. Doc Hastings of Washington state, the chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee. ...

Opponents of the legislation say it eventually could lead to opening up more public land to oil and gas extraction, mining and logging, among other things."

Rob Hotakainen reports for McClatchy Newspapers June 22, 2011.

Thursday, June 23, 2011