Access Issues

Cal4Wheel meets with CA State Parks Director Lisa Mangat

Today Cal4Wheel met with California State Parks Director Lisa Mangat and Deputy Director Maria Mowery.  We wish to thank them for the opportunity to meet and listen to issues of concern to Cal4Wheel members.

Cal4Wheel provided a briefing paper outlining our points of concern that was used as the basis of the discussion.  Cal4 is calling for a permanent Deputy Director and a full complement of administration and staff to manage the nationally recognized OHMVR Program.

The discussion focused on the importance of the OHMVR Grants and Cooperative Agreements component.  Within that framework, while the 9 State Vehicle Recreation Areas are an important part, the partnership with federal partners is the main beneficiary of the OHMVR Grants program.

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Military exercise set for August in Johnson Valley

John Stewart and others review maps of Johnson Valley

Reprinted from the Lucerne Valley Leader, April 12, 2016

Additional public meeting set for June 25

The month-long closure of an area of Johnson Valley popular among off-roaders is essential to preparing our nation's military for battle, according to representatives of the Marine Corps Logistics Operations Group.

The Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms was initially built in 1952, but a lot has changed in more than 60 years. Weapons, both on the ground and in the air, have vastly improved, and the battlefield has become dramatically larger.

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Rep. Paul Cook introduces California Minerals, Off Road Recreation and Conservation Act

Today, Rep. Paul Cook (R- Apple Valley) introduced HR 3668, the California Minerals, Off-Road Recreation, and Conservation Act. This bill presents a balanced approach to protecting, managing, and using our desert and forest areas in San Bernardino and Inyo Counties. This bill would deal with the management of existing federal land and would not result in an increase in federal landownership.

This bill establishes a Mojave Trails Special Management Area (SMA) in an area south of the existing Mojave Preserve and northeast of the Twentynine Palms Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center. This designation protects existing mining operations and allows for future mining exploration as long as mining projects never exceed ten percent of the total acreage. It would also prevent the installation of any industrial-scale renewable energy projects. Additionally, this bill would protect from development any lands within the management area donated to the federal government for conservation purposes. Over 1,200 miles of roads and off-road vehicle trails are written into law as well.

This bill establishes five new National Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Areas in Spangler Hills, El Mirage, Rasor, Dumont Dunes, and Stoddard Valley, together creating the first system of National Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Recreation Areas in the nation. Additionally, it redesignates Johnson Valley as a National Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area and expands it by nearly 20,000 acres. This bill affords additional protections to OHV users and ensures that these areas cannot be closed administratively. In total, this legislation preserves a total of 300,000 acres for OHV recreational use.

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