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7 days to save the Hammers.

August 6th2012
 By Thom Kingston on 2012-08-06T07:55:50-06:00 | King of the Hammers, Ultra4

SaveTheHammers.org has started a new campaign, and they need our help. For those that aren’t familiar, the largest and most fantastic Ultra4 off-road race of the year, aka King of the Hammers, takes place on BLM land in Johnson Valley, CA. The Marines are trying to acquire this land, and if allowed King of the Hammers as we all know it will cease to exist. So while Congress is on recess this week and, as such, in their District Offices, SaveTheHammers is urging us to contact one legislator a day, by phone or fax, and let them know just how important the use of Johnson Valley is to all of us. SaveTheHammers has detailed who to call, phone numbers, fax numbers, talking points, basically everything you need to help spread the message. Below is a repost of their campaign, which starts TODAY.

Enter SaveTheHammers.

August 6 at 9:00am until August 14 at 5:00pm in PDT
This is a 7 day campaign designed to help spread the word to our legislators who are home for 5 weeks on the importance of Saving Johnson Valley!

We need every Off Roader starting August 6th to participate in a targeted outreach. One phone call or fax a day is all we ask. Talking points can be found below the phone list. Contact name is underlined. Congress is on recess this week, they should be in the District Office. Every Off Roader must participate!

If you’d like to call, email, fax them all in one day, you can, or just one a day. In an effort to help spread the importance of Johnson Valley to our legislators!

Monday August 6th, 2012 Please call:
Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA) or
District Director Tevor Daley
Los Angeles 310-914-7300 fax 310-914-7318

Tuesday August 7th, 2012 Please call:
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA 22) or
District Director Vince Fong Bakersfield 661-327-3611 fax 661-637-0867

Wednesday August 8th, 2012 Please call:
Rep. Buck McKeon (R-CA 25) or
Deputy COS Bob Haueter
Santa Clarita 661-254-2111 fax 661-254-2380

Thursday August 9th, 2012 Please call:
Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA 41) or
DistrictDirector Rachel Khalili
Redlands 909-862-6030 fax 909-335-9155

Friday August 10th, 2012 Please Call:
Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-CA 45) or
District Director Marc Troast
Palm Desert 760-320-1076 fax 760-320-0596

Monday August 13th, 2012 Please call:
Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA 44) or
District Director Jolyn Murphy
Corona 951-784-4300 fax 951-784-5255

Tuesday August 14th, 2012 Please Call:
Rep. David Drier (R-CA 26) or
District Director Mark Harmsen
San Dimas 909-575-6226 fax 909-575-6266


Johnson Valley OHV Area
Talking Points
ISSUE: Marine Corps plans to acquire 160,000 acres of BLM land next to Marine Corps Ground Air Combat Center (MCGACC) Twenty Nine Palms eliminates most of the land available under the California Desert Conservation Plan (1980) available for to off highway (OHV) recreation impacting OHV activity and the local and national economy.

Johnson Valley OHV recreation area is 189,700 acres that develops at least 300,000 visitor days per year and is world renowned as an OHV recreation area..

Economic impact: BLM estimates $71.5 million annually into the local economy and $191.2 Million into the national economy.

USMC has a new requirement for MEB level maneuver training and intends to acquire 160,000 acres of this the land from BLM and conduct live fire on all but 40,000 acres – permanently closing access to 120,000 acres.

Local authorities and State authorities and thousands of citizens are opposed to the transfer of this land.

USMC is well into the EIS process and could issue a Record of decision as early as this summer.

Options other than those in the Draft EIS need to be considered:
Permitted use of land from BLM (like at other BLM sites used for training)
Other BLM land in the region (not necessarily adjacent).

More time needed for deliberation and seeking options on both sides and with the State.
Not urgent since Marines have been deploying to combat for 10 years without this extra range – should have more time to seek a broader solution set.
Once live fire starts the land is permanently lost. We need to find accommodation for OHV needs and that will require BLM and State officials.

The US House of Representatives passed an Amendment to the Fiscal Year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act that requires, prior to transfer, the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on the new Marine requirement for this land and on the economic impact and on other potential solutions to the elimination of recreational land.

In spite of this Congressional interest, the Secretary of the Navy just entered the final Environmental Impact Statement into the Federal Register and can now within a short time announce his “Record of Decision” to acquire this land.

The intent of the House of Representatives was to slow this down to have a better look at it. The Navy has run roughshod over the House and ignored their intent. The House should be angry. We are.

Please call the Secretary of the Navy and tell him to stop this provcess until all the stakeholders – including federal legislators – have had their voices heard.

If the Marines went through 10 years of war without this extra land, it surely could wait a few months until all interests could be accommodated.

Source: 7 Days to Save the Hammers