Delegation: Public input is crucial
The Wyoming delegation today urged the U.S. Forest Service to take seriously the need for public input in the possible relocation of the Bridger-Teton National Forest supervisor's office in Jackson.
The delegation wrote a letter to Regional Forester Harv Forsgren, urging the Forest Service to hold public meetings in addition to stakeholder meetings. A copy of the letter is below.
Nov. 29, 2007
Dear Regional Director Forsgren,
We continue to be interested in the potential relocation of the Bridger-Teton National Forest supervisor's office. In our September 13, 2007 letter to Regional Forester Jack Troyer, we encouraged the Forest Service to gather public input on the potential move. While we appreciate your willingness to hold "stakeholder meetings," we are disappointed that you have not agreed to hold public meetings in all of the potentially affected communities.
The potential move of the supervisor's office will impact all of the communities who are served by the Bridger-Teton National Forest. Many of our constituents are concerned that the Forest Service is not providing opportunities for them to comment on the impacts of this decision. In order to make a sound decision, we once again strongly encourage you to hold public meetings. We hope that you will continue to hold stakeholder meetings with interested community members, county and town officials, local organizations, and representatives from state agencies.
We are also concerned by reports that you have sent a "conveyance proposal" to your Washington, DC office before you have completed the outreach process. Such an action could be interpreted as a decision having been made in the matter before all the facts are known. We hope this is not the case and look forward to working with you to meet Congressional requirements that are in place while meeting the needs of affected communities.
As the Forest Service moves forward, it is critical that you continue to consider the concerns of the community and gather local input before making a decision. We appreciate your consideration of this recommendation and look forward to your prompt response.
Michael B. Enzi
United States Senator
United States Senator
Member of Congress