Friends of Plumas Wilderness hold informational meeting on national monument proposal in Chester
By Gregg Scott
In an attempt to propose a National Monument in the Feather River watershed the Friends of Plumas Wilderness (FoPW) has hosted four town hall meetings over the past couple months. The last one was in Chester on April 6 at the Chester Memorial Hall. About 50-55 people were in attendance, not including the FoPW staff and board members. Executive Director Charles Schrammel began the meeting with a brief overview of the goals of this project and then introduced Conservation and Planning Director Elizabeth Ramsey to provide more details.
Ramsey spent quite a lot of time going over a map of current protections and management control agencies, which also included several potential changes proposed by FoPW. According to Ramsey, the management agencies would not change, but there would be more seats at the table including the Maidu Tribe.
The largest looming questions about the project seemed to be regarding the specifics such as exactly who would be impacted and exactly what locations would be targeted. Several questions were raised about the lack of specific details: Who exactly is funding this drive and who will benefit from the project and who will be negatively Impacted in the process?
By the end of the meeting, some of the FoPW folks seemed to understand that they were going to have to offer more detailed plans and more in-depth information on the true agenda of the organization before they can get a majority of the Plumas communities to support them. Ramsey told the audience that she thought they needed to go back and take a new look at their proposal. At least one member of the audience agreed when they commented, “Your proposal needs to specify your exact goal as well as how it will benefit the community it will impact”.