Bureau of Land Management & United States Forest Service Leaders Meet RAF on Same Day

On Tuesday, September 20, 2011 Dan Prill, RAF Vice President, Pete Smith, RAF BLM liaison, and John Hudson, Montana Pilots Association President, met with the Director of the BLM, Bob Abbey in Great Falls, Montana.   As quoted from the Great Falls Tribune,” The director, who arrived in the state Sunday, is visiting BLM lands across the West and talking with its users and employees who oversee it.”

Mr. Abbey urged the RAF to continue to be involved in the early scoping phases of Resource Management Plans (RMP) on BLM lands.  Part of the BLM mission is multiple use on the public lands they administer.  Aviation is a valid use of those public lands and it takes you, our members, to monitor the RMPs that are happening at the BLM and the Travel Plans that are happening at the US Forest Service.  With your volunteerism and donations the RAF can continue to grow and have more influence in these plans with the final result being additional recreational and backcountry airstrips.

Director Abbey thanked the RAF and the MPA for standing with them as interveners in the lawsuits filed against them concerning the procedures they used in writing the Upper Missouri Breaks National Monument RMP.  On August 9, 2011 Judge Sam Haddon ruled for the BLM, MPA and the RAF.

While Dan, Pete, and Jon were meeting with Director Abbey in Great Falls, RAF President, John McKenna, was in Washington DC meeting with BLM Recreation and Visitor Service department head Andy Tenney.   Later that same day John McKenna also met with USFS Chief, Tom Tidwell.  Mr. Tidwell also encouraged the continued involvement of the RAF on matters relating to USFS lands.

Clearly the RAF has achieved a milestone in its life cycle when meetings with the heads of the two largest public land agencies take place on opposite sides of the country on this “Super Tuesday. ”

Submitted on October 4, 2011.

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