Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.
Oregonians for Food and Shelter
Please plan to attend Natural Resources Day on Tuesday, April 19th at the Oregon State Capitol. Click here for further information: http://www.growingoregon.org/
Enjoy your weekend!
Paulette, Terry & Sandi
This is a great explanation of the Senator Pat Roberts FIFRA/Clean Water Act fix that resembles HR 872. Please contact Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley to let them know you want them to support the Senate Bill.
Rep. Greg Walden’s statement and release on the inclusion of language in the Continuing Resolution agreement to delist wolves in the western United States.
Wolves to be delisted, management returned to states under agreement expected to be signed into law this week
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Language that provides for the delisting of the gray wolf population in the West, including eastern Oregon, is included in H.R. 1473, the FY2011 Continuing Resolution. The legislation would return management of wolf populations in eastern Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Washington, and Utah to the states.
The bill will be considered by both the House and Senate later this week and then will be signed into law by President Obama.
“By removing wolves from the federal ESA, we are putting them back in the control of local management, where they belong,” Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) said. “Our ranchers and local communities need to have the ability to protect their property and livelihood. Overarching federal protection does not provide the needed flexibility to provide holistic management for communities, wildlife and wolves.”
Wolf populations in the West have vastly exceeded recovery goals put into place in the 1990s. In March 2009, the Obama administration determined that the species were fully recovered and should be removed from the endangered species list.
However, a district court ruling in Montana relisted the entire population in August 2010, and another recent decision rejected a proposed settlement between environmental groups and the federal government to restore state management in Idaho and Montana.
Despite the support from President Obama to de-list the wolves, these court decisions made it clear that without congressional action, wolves would remain on the federally protected list indefinitely.
The language in the agreement reinstates the original determination by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to delist wolves in states with approved management plans in place. It returns management of wolf populations in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Utah to the states. The language also allows negotiations between the State of Wyoming and the Department of Interior to continue so that the entire population can be delisted.
Second Klamath salmon species may get federal protection Monday, April 11, 2011 By The Associated Press
Federal fisheries biologists have agreed to consider Endangered Species Act protection for a second salmon species in the Klamath River running from Southern Oregon across Northern California.
NOAA Fisheries Service says in a notice to be published Tuesday in the Federal Register that it accepted a petition filed by conservation groups on behalf of spring chinook, once the most prized and numerous of the salmon returning to the upper Klamath and Trinity rivers.
The Center for Biological Diversity and others blamed the declines on dams, logging, mining, water diversions, and overfishing.
Public Hearing and Chance to Review and Comment on the Final Supplement to Oregon's 2010 Integrated ReportDEQ is opening a public review and comment period on the Final Supplement to Oregon's 2010 Integrated Report. The supplement includes the results from the second and final phase of DEQ’s review of a focused set of data and information to assess water quality throughout the state and to identify impaired waters needing TMDLs. This effort is also commonly referred to as the development of the 303(d) list.
· The final supplemental data report is available for review beginning: Wednesday, April 13, 2011, 2011, 8 a.m. PDT
· The deadline for providing comments to DEQ is: Tuesday, May 3, 2011, 5 p.m. PDT
· DEQ will hold a hearing to provide information and to take public comment: Monday, April 18, 2011, 4 p.m. PDT at DEQ Headquarters - Room 10, 811 SW 6th Ave., Portland, OR 97204
Information and instructions on how to review and provide comments are available on the DEQ's website for Oregon's 2010 Integrated Report at: http://www.deq.state.or.us/wq/assessment/2010Report.htm
DEQ will consider public comments on the supplement and complete the report. DEQ anticipates submitting the final 2010 Integrated Report and 303(d) list to EPA in May 2011.
News from ODA:
April 8, 2011
NPDES Permit Deadline Extended
On March 28th, 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals granted EPA an extension to the original April 9, 2011 deadline to implement a NPDES permitting system for pesticide applications in, over, or near water. This order will effectively delay the federal requirement for NPDES permits for pesticide applications until at least October 31, 2011.
In light of the Court's decision, DEQ has decided to delay the planned issuance of both the Pesticide General Permit (PGP) and the Irrigation
District General Permit. DEQ has been developing these permits in response to the Sixth Circuit court decision that required the EPA to develop permits for certain pesticide applications in, over and near water (National Cotton Council, et al. v. EPA).
The public comment period for the General Pesticide Permit (2300A) closed on March 7, 2011. The public comment period and public hearings for the Irrigation District General Permit (2000J) is now underway and will close on April 15, 2011. See DEQ's web site for more information on these general permits. http://www.deq.state.or.us/wq/wqpermit/pesticides.htm
In addition, a federal bill (HR. 872) exists that would eliminate or substantially change the requirement to have an NPDES permit. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill, also known as the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2011, to amend FIFRA and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (Clean Water Act). This bill may be found here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-112hr872eh/pdf/BILLS-112hr872eh.pdf
DEQ and ODA will continue to track developments with the EPA final permit and DEQ will not issue the general permits before EPA has a final permit in place. If H.R. 872 passes the U.S. Senate and is signed by the President, the impact will be reviewed regarding the necessity of a NPDES-PGP permit.
From Representative Dennis Richardson's Newsletter:
Oregon's Political War Has Begun
The “Co-Chairs Budget” was the subject of last week’s newsletter. It was signed by my two Democrat Ways & Means Co-Chairs, Senator Richard Devlin (D-Tualatin), Representative Peter Buckley (D-Ashland) and me.
This Co-Chairs Budget was agreed upon after weeks of daily meetings and negotiations between the Democrat and Republican Co-Chairs. It is a refreshing indicator that partisan politics can be set aside and your elected representatives can actually work together during these difficult economic times.
While Oregon’s fiscal problems are being addressed in a bipartisan manner requiring thoughtful and well-reasoned compromise, it was disappointing to learn that three of Oregon’s most powerful political groups, the Oregon Education Association (OEA), American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), are now trying to disrupt this bipartisan work through deception, intimidation and demagoguery.
Consider the deceit in their political attack ad now being aired from Portland to Ashland: To view the ad click here: http://www.youtube.com/user/OurOregon2011
For those who know me, such a negative political ‘hit piece” is comical. Unfortunately it has caused anxiety and fear for vulnerable and confused seniors who have been deceived by it.
We three Co-Chairs and the rest of your Democrat and Republican legislators on the Ways and Means Committee are working together to face the reality of a difficult state economy. Such is not the case with three of Oregon’s most powerful unions, the OEA, AFSCME and SEIU. Instead, they collaborate and propagate lies. Their ad says: “Richardson wants to make drastic cuts to services we depend on … so Richardson can keep more than $440 million in unspent funds for his political priorities.”
This statement is false. The ending balance belongs to all Oregonians for protection from further recessionary pain.
As far as I am concerned, the airing of this fear-mongering statewide political attack ad is intended as a warning to other Legislators. They want to scare them into dancing to the unions’ tune, or risk being the subject of the next attack ad. The goal is to motivate the “unions’ legislators” to abandon fiscal prudence and perpetuate Oregon’s history of unsustainable spending. It was this kind of denial of economic reality that has grown Oregon’s all-funds budget by 50% in just the last four years.
Meanwhile, these very same public employee unions stand against every government reform intended to stabilize Oregon’s out-of-control spending, including the reforms suggested by former Governor Kulongoski’s Reset Cabinet and those proposed in Governor Kitzhaber’s recommended budget.
People in Oregon are tired of such negative political smear campaigns, and long for truth, transparency and meaningful reform. For the past decade Oregon unemployment has been above the national average. Yet during this same period, Oregonians have watched state government spending balloon by more than 100% in only ten years.
While hundreds of thousands of Oregon workers have taken pay cuts or lost their jobs, these public employee unions have negotiated sweetheart benefit deals, automatic pay increases and lucrative retirement packages. Even Wisconsin’s employee unions have allowed something to be paid by their members toward their retirement plans and health benefits. But not Oregon.
The attack ad states, “Richardson wants to make drastic cuts to services we depend on….” It implies the “we” are seniors, kids and vulnerable Oregonians. In fact, the opposite is true. The unions are angry because I suggest that their union members pay something toward their retirement and group insurance plans, which would free-up hundreds of millions of precious dollars that could provide services vital for Oregon’s most vulnerable seniors, disabled and children.
Oregon has great teachers who are members of the OEA, and dedicated public servants who are members of AFSCME and SEIU. These teachers and public workers should be embarrassed. While they work hard and earn their pay, their union bosses and lobbyists wield political power like aristocrats and take home six-figure paychecks, while acting as if they have actually contributed something to society.
Maybe the attempts to defang the public unions in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana and California are not so radical after all. I was an apprentice with the Carpenter Union as a young man and my father was a union champion back in the dark days of the 1930’s. Back then unions represented the interests of labor to counterbalance the profit-seeking interests of business-owning capitalists. It was a fair match.
Today, those private sector unions have lost much of their power and, for the most part, their relevance. Public policy over the years has resulted in laws that now offer most of the benefits and protections previously advocated by unions.
The public sector unions are another matter entirely. They obtain better and better deals for their members by negotiating against representatives of public employers who have no real “skin in the game.” Time after time the public unions come away from the bargaining tables as obvious victors. The losers are the unrepresented taxpayers who get stuck with the bill.
The public sector unions get their employers to collect their union dues for them, which they use to recruit, fund and elect “their legislators.” These legislators pass pro-union legislation that gives the union members favored pensions, positions and pay. Such “sweetheart” union power brokering is incestuous and is threatening the financial stability of our local, state and federal government.
Unfortunately, in Oregon there is little we can do to curb it. The newly elected leaders in Wisconsin are trying to break up the union cartels. Consider the consequences in Wisconsin and other courageous states: Thousands of demonstrators march on their state capitols, sing songs of freedom-denied, and act the part of oppressed workers. In the presence of national media cameras and microphones we hear the chants of “power to the people,” orchestrated by union bosses and lobbyists who are really working to maintain “power over the people.”
Political war has been declared against me and other fiscal conservatives by the OEA, AFSCME and SEIU. I am unimpressed. I will continue to work with Republicans and Democrats to pass a balanced budget that will meet the needs of Oregon’s most vulnerable citizens with the revenue we have available.
I expect the current ad campaign is merely the opening salvo in this political war.
If the forces determined to undermine reform and bipartisan cooperation are successful, you will know it by what occurs in the next eight weeks. If they win, the political process will break down, budgetary impasse will ensue, and partisan posturing will once again, reign supreme.
If we win, we pass the best balanced budget possible, end this legislative session and go home. In short, if we win, Oregon wins.
Nursery Growers Reminded of Upcoming Sales Closing Date for Insurance Coverage
Spokane, Wash., April 4, 2011 ---- USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) advises Pacific Northwest nursery growers of the Monday, May 2, 2011 sales closing date for 2012 Nursery Multi-Peril Crop Insurance (MPCI) coverage. MPCI Nursery insurance provides protection for wholesale nurseries producing and marketing nursery plants grown in standard nursery containers or in the field. Coverage is based on a plant inventory value report (PIVR) declaring a value of insurable plants (the lower of a nursery grower’s own prices or prices contained in a Plant Price Schedule maintained by USDA). New policy applications may be filled at any time; however, all applications, including those for new or amended coverage, are subject to a 30-day waiting period before commencement of coverage. Current nursery policyholders may request changes in coverage and/or obtain the Pilot Nursery Grower’s Price Endorsement (NGPE) in Oregon and Washington, prior to the May 2 sales closing deadline. Local crop insurance agents are available to provide program details that reflect the grower’s nursery inventory. A list of crop insurance agents is available at all USDA Service Centers throughout the U.S. or at the website address: http://www3.rma.usda.gov/tools/agents/ USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (80) 795-3271 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD). # Jo Lynne, Spokane RMAJo Lynne Seufer, Risk Management Specialist USDA/Risk Management Agency Spokane Regional Office (Serving Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington) 11707 East Sprague Ave, #201 Spokane, WA 99206 (509)228-6320 Office 800-205-9953 (in AK, ID, OR, WA) Toll Free (509)998-6902 Gov't Cell (509)228-6321 Fax email@example.com www.rma.usda.gov
American Farmers, Truckers, & Small Business Jobs Threatened By Obama Admin’s Anti-Energy Policies
From Speaker John Boehner's Office, April 1, 2011
Representatives of American farmers, truckers, and small businesses from across the country told the House Natural Resources Committee yesterday that skyrocketing gas prices are threatening jobs and placing an added economic burden on American families and job creators – and that the Obama Administration’s anti-energy policies are making things worse. Yesterday’s hearing underscored the need for the American Energy Initiative, an ongoing effort by Republicans to stop Washington policies that are driving up gas prices, and expand American energy production to help lower costs and create jobs. Here are a few of the highlights:
THE PROBLEM: Skyrocketing Gas Prices Are Raising Costs for Job Creators & Increasing the Economic Burden on American Families:
· For America’s farmers and ranchers, the increase in fuel costs is making everything from fertilizer to tractor fuel substantially more expensive. According to a USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) study cited by Colorado Farm Bureau President Don Shawcroft, “farmers can expect to pay almost 85 percent more than they paid in 2000 just to put their crops in the ground this spring.”
· According to Bill Graves, President & CEO of the American Trucking Associations, “a one-cent increase in the average price of diesel costs the trucking industry an additional $356 million a year in fuel expenses.” Graves notes that the trucking industry “cannot simply absorb these rapid increases in fuel costs and eventually these costs must be passed through to our customers,” forcing Americans to “pay higher prices for food, clothing and other basic necessities.”
· Karen Alderman Harbert, CEO of the Institute for 21st Century Energy (an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce) testified that “the average American household is expected to spend $2,800 on gasoline this year, $850 more than 2009.”
THE CAUSE: The Obama Administration’s Anti-Energy Policies Are Hamstringing U.S. Energy Production & Destroying Jobs:
· Harbert says a large share of the current energy crisis is a “direct result of federal policies.” “From its earliest days, the Obama administration has continually taken land off the table for oil production, most notably the Gulf of Mexico,” says Harbert. As a result, “the Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently projected that by 2012 U.S. crude oil production will decrease by more than 90 million barrels, almost all of which is directly attributable to an expected 30% decrease from the Gulf of Mexico.” According to a study cited by Harbert, the de facto moratorium in the Gulf will “cost nearly 25,000 jobs in the region and 35,000 nation-wide.”
· According to Graves, “an increasing number of trucking companies” – 96 percent of which operate 20 trucks or less – “are expected to fail” due to skyrocketing fuel costs. Graves also faults the Obama Administration for the spike is fuel costs, explaining that “drilling moratoria, the refusal by the Department of the Interior (DOI) to process drilling permits, multi-year environmental impact studies, and political decisions that declare vast amounts of American energy resources on federal lands off limits to energy production have all taken their toll on U.S. petroleum production and – will have an even greater impact on future production.”
THE SOLUTION: Increase American Energy Production to Address Rising Prices & Create Jobs:
A Wood McKenzie study cited by Harbert estimates that “increasing access to federal energy resources would create more than 500,000 jobs, increase domestic production by 35%, and provide an additional $150 billion in government revenue.”
· Graves also called for “increasing access to – and production of – American crude oil supplies” to help lower fuel prices, urging Congress and the Obama Administration to “reverse the current policies that have declared vast areas of American energy resources off-limits and have led to the perception that the U.S. will begin to produce even less oil and become increasingly dependent on imports to satisfy the demand for transportation fuels.”
· Shawcroft echoed the call for more domestic energy production, saying “we must renew America’s commitment to domestic oil and gas production. Energy rich repositories such as the Outer Continental Shelf, the Bakken Oilfields and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge must be explored and opened for oil and gas production.”
This week, the new House majority moved the American Energy Initiative forward with the introduction of three bills that will reverse the Obama Administration’s job-crushing policies and put us on a path toward expanding American energy production. Visit the House Natural Resources Committee page to learn more about these proposals, and stop by the American Energy Initiative facebook page to keep up with our progress.SPEAKER PRESS OFFICE REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH) H-232, THE CAPITOL (202) 225-0600 | SPEAKER.GOV
Page Updated: Sunday April 17, 2011 02:30 AM Pacific
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