Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2008

Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2008

November 11, 2008

To: All members, U.S. Senate

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid recently announced his plans to call back the Senate for a lame duck session to pass a massive land grab bill that will restrict property rights and hamstring energy exploration in the United States. On behalf of the undersigned organizations representing hundreds of thousands of taxpayers, small businesses, shareholders, consumers, and senior citizens, we strongly urge you to oppose the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2008.

This legislation contains over 1,000 pages and is comprised of more than 100 different land grab bills. From wilderness areas to heritage areas to wild and scenic rivers, this omnibus bill advances a centralized command-and-control vision of American lands. The federal government already owns over 650 million acres of land, much of which is experiencing severe maintenance backlogs or has already gone into disarray. We are concerned the omnibus bill would lock millions of additional acres of land into government regulation, preventing American citizens from exercising their right of property ownership.

By restricting access to land for energy exploration, this legislation is limiting the potential of the economy and directly interfering with America’s entrepreneurial drive. Through the creation of unnecessary new “conservation” programs, millions of additional acres of land will be managed by a vast government bureaucracy and its additional levels of “red tape.” This bill would ultimately force the American taxpayer to fund the purchase of land that could have otherwise been utilized in the private sector.

Furthermore, this $4 billion omnibus package contains a multitude of pork-barrel spending projects. At a time when taxpayers around the country are struggling to make ends meet, asking them to shoulder an even higher spending burden is unacceptable. Birthday celebrations for cities, tropical botanical gardens, and a study determining whether Alexander Hamilton’s boyhood estate is suitable to become a new National Park unit clearly are not national priorities, and treating them as such is an affront to your constituents.

As a matter of principle, property rights should be protected by recognizing the right of citizens to utilize and prosper from the land in this country. Legislation should never arbitrarily attempt to seize land from the public and restrict its use, as the omnibus package would. We urge you to stand up and reject Senator Reid’s effort to force this larded-up land grab down taxpayers’ throats.

 

Sincerely,

60 Plus Association, Jim Martin, President
Alaska Land Rights Coalition, Paula Easley, President and Ray Kreig, Vice Chairman
Albemarle Country Republican Committee, Christian J. Schoenewald, Chairman
Alliance for Worker Freedom, Brian Johnson, Executive Director
American Civil Rights Union, Susan A. Carleson, Chairman/CEO
American Conservative Union, David Keane, President
American Energy Alliance, Thomas Pyle, President
American Family Business Institute, Dick Patten, President
American Land Rights Association, Chuck Cushman, Executive Director
American Legislative Exchange Council, Alan B. Smith, Executive Director
American Policy Center, Tom Deweese, President
American Property Coalition, Linda Runbeck, President
American Shareholders Association, Ryan Ellis, Executive Director
Americans for American Energy
Americans for Forest Access, Inc., Eddie Philips, Sr., Chairman
Americans for Limited Government, William Wilson, President
Americans for Prosperity, Tim Phillips, President
Americans for Tax Reform, Grover G. Norquist, President
Americans for the Preservation of Liberty, Mark Chmura, Executive Director
Backcountry Horsemen of California, Redshank Riders Unit, Peter Spencer, Public Lands Liaison/State Director
Black Hills Regional Multiple Use Coalition, Tom Troxel, Executive Secretary
Buncombe County GOP Action Club, Kathleen R. Lack, President
California Land Institute, Sharon Bolton, President
Campaign for Liberty, David Wahlstedt, Congressional District 5 Coordinator
Center for Fiscal Accountability, Sandra Fabry, Executive Director
Center for Individual Freedom, Jeffrey Mazzella, President
Center for the Defense of Free Enterprise, Ron Arnold, Executive Vice President
Citizen Outreach, Chuck Muth, President
Citizens Against Recreational Eviction-USA, Candace Oathout, Chair
Citizens for Property Rights, Jack Shockey, President
Citizens for Property Rights, Loudon County, VA, Phil Sandoe
Citizens for Limited Taxation, Barbara Anderson, President
Citizens for Responsible Zoning and Landowner Rights, Inc., Marilyn F. Hayman, Chairman
Citizens United, David N. Bossie, President
Coalition for a Conservative Majority, Ken Blackwell, Chairman
Coalition of Concerned Citizens, Meade, KS, Ellen Verell, Chairman
Competitive Enterprise Institute, Myron Ebell, Director, Energy and Global Warming Policy
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste, Tom Schatz, President
Deschutes County Farm Bureau, Deschutes County, OR, Matt Cyrus, President
Empower Texans, Michael Quinn Sullivan, President
Environmental Community Outreach Services, Eureka, NV and Juno, AK, Liz Arnold
Environmental Perspectives, Inc., Michael S. Coffman, Ph.D., President
Ethan Allen Institute, John McClaughry, President
Fish & Wildlife Conservation Council, Leonard C. Harwood, Chairman
Formation Capital Corporation, US, “The Idaho Cobalt Project,” Jerry S. Hamilton, Environmental Coordinator
Freedomworks, Swain County Chapter, Bryson City, NC, William T. Dills
Free Enterprise Action Fund, Tom Borelli, Managing Partner
Frontiers of Freedom, George Landrith, President
Government Pirates: The Assault On Private Property Rights – And How We Can Fight It, Don Corace, Author
Gun Owners of America, Larry Pratt, Executive Director
Hocking Valley Motorcycle Club, Reynoldsburg, OH, James E. Kenny, Vice President
Idaho Valley Farm Bureau, Jeanne Amzen, Women’s County Chairperson
Illinois Policy Institute, Greg Blankinship, President & Founder
Institute for Liberty, Andrew M. Langer, President
International Liquid Terminals Association, R. Peter Weaver, Director of Regulatory Compliance and Safety
Iowa Wednesday Meeting Group, Dr. Don Racheter, Founder and Moderator
JB’S Construction, James Gallaway, President
League of Private Property Voters, Chuck Cushman
Let Freedom Ring, Colin Hanna, President
Liberty Coalition of Free Citizens, Dan Goulet, Chairman
Maryland Center-Right Coalition, Richard Falknor, Chairman
Merced Dirt Riders, Inc., Turlock, CA, Michael Damaso
Montana Association of State Grazing Districts
Montana Multiple Use Association, Tim Ravndal, Board of Directors
Montana Public Lands Council
National Center for Public Policy Research, Amy Ridenour, President
National Tax Limitation Committee, Lew Uhler, President
National Taxpayers Union, Duane Parde, President
NC OHV Association, Nancy Minard, President
New Jersey Off Highway Vehicle Association, James Parrinello, Vice President
New Mexico Cattle Growers’ Association, Alisa Ogden, President
New Mexico Federal Lands Council, Mike Casabonne, President
New Mexico Wool Growers, Inc., Joan Kincaid, President
North Dakota Farm Bureau, Brian Kramer, Public Policy Director
North Shore Road Association, Linda G. Hogue, Chairman
Northwest Mining Association, Laura Skaer, Executive Director
Oregon Cattlemen’s Association, Kay Teisl, Executive Director
Oregon Hunters Association, Fred Craig, President
Oregonians In Action, Bill Moshofsky, Vice President
People for the West – Tuscon, Inc., Jonathan DuHamel, President
People for Wyoming, Dorothy Bartholomew, President
Project 21 Advisory Council, Mychal Massie, Chairman and Deneen Borelli, Fellow
Property Rights Alliance, Kelsey Zahourek, Executive Director
Property Rights Foundation of America, Inc., Carol W. La Grasse, President
Providence City, Utah, Randy Simmons, Mayor
Public Lands for the People, Inc., Gerald Hobbs, President
Pulp and Paperworkers’ Resource Council, James Randy Bowen, Southern Pine Region Director
Rhode Island Wise Use, Brian Bishop
RI Farm Bureau, Al Bettencourt, Executive Director
RightMarch.com, Dr. William Greene, President
Ruffed Grouse Lodge, John D. Reardon
Rule of Law Committee, William H. Shaker, Volunteer President
Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council, Karen Kerrigan, President & CEO
South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, Margaret Nachtigall, Executive Director
Southern Appalachian Multiple-Use, Steve Henson, Executive Director
Stewards of the Sequoia, Chris Horgan, Executive Director
Take Back Pennsylvania, Fred V. Grau, Jr., Executive Director
Taxpayers for Accountable Government, Jim Vogt, President
Tennessee Tax Revolt, Ben Cunningham
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc., C. Preston Noel, III, President
Turn Bull Lumber Company, Doug Clark
U.S. Bill of Rights Foundation, Dane vonBreichenruchardt, President
Virginians for Property Rights, Patricia Bradburn, President
West 65, Inc., Carla Harper
Western Business Roundtable, Darrell Henry, Director of Federal Government Affairs
Washington Farm Bureau
Water for Life, Inc., Bill Wilber, President
Wisconsin ATV Association, Inc., Randy Harden, President and Rob McConnell, Vice President

 

Individuals:

Alice Jean Avery, Lava Hot Springs, ID
James & Joyce Bant, Hazelhurst, WI
Judy Boyle, Representative-Elect, Idaho Legislature
Robert E. & Carol L. Brown, Vancouver, WA
Shannon Chastain, AERC Member, AHA Member, MOTDRA Member
Odell Christman, Soda Springs, ID
Connie Cyrus
Genda Frei, Farm Bureau Member, Grangerville, ID
Kim Frei, Playwright, Grangerville, ID
Ronald Frei, Farm and Ranch Owner, Grangerville, ID
Diana Furchtgott-Roth
Ted Graham, NC Registered Forester
Boyd & Shirley Hardy, Farmers
Craig A Harber, Professor, Extension Wildlife Specialist, Department of Forestry, Wildlife, and Fisheries, University of Tennessee
Paul & Kathleen Hayden, Baker, NV
Sierra Dawn Stoneberg Hold, Ph.D.
John Hutchings, Las Vegas, NV
David B. Isner, North Carolina Registered Forester
Donald B. Jeakins, Mining Industry (Retired), Fallon, NV
Mary Ann Jeakins, Banking Industry (Retired), Fallon, NV
Maxine Korman, Korman Ranch, Hinsdale, MT
Dennis LaBare, Upper Tract, WV
Tim LaFarge, Ph.D., Forest Geneticist (Retired)
Nancy Landt, Santa, ID
Terry McKinney, American Motorcyclist Association Member, Blue Ridge Coalition Member, Tobaccoville, NC
Milari Madison, Property Owner, Waterford, PA
Ed Martin, St. Louis, MO
Carl Meyers
Vernon L. & Susan K. Moore, Phillips, WI
Mrs. Alexandra H. Mulkern, Mechanicsville, MD
Stephen L. Ralston, Columbia, PA
Floyd Rathbun, Fallon, NV
Tim Ravndal, Townsend, MT
Cliff Rexrode
Gary E. Sattler, Freelance Writer, AOL Network
R.J. Smith, Environmental Consultant, WDC
Rachel Thomas, Property Rights Leader, Huachuca City, AZ
Teresa & John Whitmore