Wednesday, January 15, 2020

CA OHV BUDGET UPDATE - Governor’s Proposed Budget for 2020-2021



On January 10, 2020, Governor Newsom released his Proposed Budget which highlights the Governor's goals and objectives for the forthcoming year.  For OHV recreation, the proposed budget indicates the administration’s fiscal commitment to programs and departments including the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) program at the California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR).

LINK TO DPR PROPOSED BUDGET

Upon initial review, it appears the Governor is supportive of the OHV program with a proposed budget for 2020-2021 of $108,387 million dollars which includes $36 million for the OHV grants program.  In 2018-2019 the actual budget was $104,596 million. The estimated budget for 2019-2020 is $108,315 million. 

While this is good news for OHV, the motorized recreation community must remain engaged with the OHMVR program and DPR due to potential impacts from the Parks Transformation Process.

As most of you know, the OHMVR Division has a distinct mission that is carried out by a highly-skilled team of OHV-related trail specialists, environmental scientists, law enforcement personnel, and grant administrators.  The Division Deputy Director position has been vacant for over a year and recently the acting deputy went back to his previous duties, leaving the Division without a leader.  How long it takes the governor to fill this essential position will go far to gauge his support for the program.

We should remain concerned about the potential dilution of those aforementioned skillsets that would devastate the OHMVR Division’s ability to manage its highly acclaimed system of State Vehicular Recreation Areas (SVRAs).  It would also impact the grant program that supports managed OHV recreation on Forest Service and BLM lands and related restoration projects, law enforcement, and safety programs.

QWR believes that OHV advocacy efforts in 2020 should remain focused on Park Transformation to help ensure the OHMVR Division retains those aforementioned skillsets.

# # #

Thursday, January 9, 2020

NATIONAL LE APPRECIATION DAY - Say Thanks to our Law Enforcement Officers

FS Law Enforcement Officer
Mendocino National Forest

On National Law Enforcement Day 2020, QWR would like to express our sincere appreciation to all the local, state, and federal law enforcement officers who dedicate their life to our protection and safety.
BLM Ranger at OHV Event
BLM Chappie Shasta OHV Area


 
CA State Park Ranger


QWR also extends our gratitude to those officers who work on OHV details to protect natural resources, ensure that OHV regulations are followed, and educate riders on public safety issues. 

Plumas County Sheriff

Their efforts are a critical component of successful OHV programs and help ensure that we have continued access to sustainable motorized recreation on designated roads, trails, and areas.

Thanks to all who serve!


Tuesday, January 7, 2020

2020 VISION FOR OHV


OP-ED
By Don Amador
Date: 1/7/20

2020 VISION FOR OHV

Will Rogers, a famous cowboy, actor, and social commentator, once said, “Don't let yesterday take up too much of today."

As OHV leaders, advocates, clubs, riders, and consultants prepare to address ongoing or much anticipated challenges or opportunities in 2020, I believe it is important for us to embrace those efforts with renewed energy and enthusiasm.

Certainly it is important to remember and utilize successful strategies that have helped support access to existing OHV recreation opportunities or have created new sustainable trails and route networks.

However, it has been my experience that OHV advocates can often get bogged down and discouraged by negative experiences incurred in the many battles we fight with ourselves, agencies, politicians, environmental groups, and courts.

Each one of us only has so much gas in our emotional tank.  I believe its best – and also more productive – to ride forward in our advocacy journey than to backtrack in search of mistakes we may have made or to dwell on discouragements.

Resolve in 2020 to be that eternal optimist who stays positive regardless of challenges or hurdles placed in their path.   Visualize a positive outcome for OHV this year.  It’s our best option.

# # #

Don Amador writes on recreation and land-use issues from his office in Oakley, CA.  Don may be reached via email at: damador@cwo.com



Friday, December 6, 2019

QWR NEWS RELEASE - Tribute to Access Icon Clark Collins

Clark Collins (C) on Trail Ride in Tahoe National Forest
Photo: Rick Guidice

NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Don Amador
Phone: (925) 783-1834
Date: December 6, 2019


CLARK COLLINS TRIBUTE – ICONIC VISIONARY, MENTOR, AND FRIEND

OAKLEY, CA - Iconic visionaries are few and far between in the land-use arena.  John Muir, an avid naturalist, was an early visionary and is considered the father of the modern environmental movement.   Aldo Leopold, a U.S. Forest Supervisor and forester, was also a visionary who promoted a strong land stewardship ethic and fought for creation of federal Wilderness Areas.


I believe the history books will also recognize Clark Collins as a similar visionary that founded a national grassroots movement to promote access to, and responsible recreational use of, federal lands.

  
For me, Clark’s biggest contribution was securing a permanent seat at the national “land-use table” for managed OHV recreation.  In the B.C (before Clark) era, OHV was largely ignored by other well established federal land stakeholders such as the U.S. Forest Service, BLM, environmental groups, resource industry, and Wilderness advocates.  When those groups met, OHV was often not at the table.  Today we are.


Clark also worked hard to inspire the recreation community to become substantively engaged with land agencies, conservation organizations, elected officials, and other user groups as a way for them to help secure recreational access to designated roads, trails, and area for future generations.


Finally, Clark took it upon himself to mentor budding recreation advocates such as myself and many others.  That effort may be Clark’s most significant contribution to land-use in that it helped father today’s volunteer and professional OHV advocacy corps that is seeded in numerous local, state, and national organizations.


* Clark’s funeral is December 10, 2019 at 1:30 p.m at the Holy Spirit Catholic Church, St. Anthony Chapel, 524 North 7th Ave., Pocatello, Idaho 83201

# # #

Don Amador has been in the trail advocacy and recreation management profession for almost 30 years. Don is President of Quiet Warrior Racing/Consulting. Don is President/CEO of the Post Wildfire OHV Recovery Alliance. Don served as a contractor to the BlueRibbon Coalition from 1996 until June, 2018. Don served on the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission from 1994-2000. He has won numerous awards including being a 2016 Inductee into the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame and the 2018 Friend of the AMA Award. Don currently serves as the government affairs lead for AMA District 36 in Northern California and also serves as the OHV representative on the BLM’s Central California Resource Advisory Committee.  Don writes from his office in Oakley, CA and can be reached via email at: damador@quietwarriorracing.com


Thursday, November 28, 2019

GIVING THANKS FOR ED WALDHEIM




SPECIAL THANKSGIVING REQUEST FOR A SPECIAL PERSON


THANKFUL FOR ED WALDHEIM – Being thankful for family and friends during this holiday season is important.  Expressing that thankfulness is also important especially for those who play or have played an important role in our lives.

With that thought in mind, I want to share a message (see below) from Ed Waldheim’s OHV network about expressing a kind note to Ed as he is placed on Hospice. As part of that network, I want to thank Ed in public for his friendship and leadership over the years.

Ed was an important mentor for me when I first got started in OHV advocacy about 30 years ago.  Ed set an example for me and many others.  Listed below are some terms that I like to use to describe Ed.

Visionary

Show up at meetings/work parties

Educate elected officials

Facilitation/organization of meetings

Servant leadership

Commitment

Passion for the sport

Growing role for non-profits

Engage with land managers

Communication

Don’t take no for an answer

Never give up

Present solutions

Have fun with family and friends

The bullet-points listed above are just a few of the personal and professional tenets that Ed helped instill in me.

If you are one of the many folks in OHV recreation that Ed has touched either directly or indirectly, please take time to read the message below and send Ed a message that will be read to him over this holiday season.


MESSAGE FROM ED’S OHV NETWORK (and where to send thank you notes)

Hello,


As we enter this Thanksgiving season of giving thanks for our many blessings, we have a special request from anyone who has been touched by Ed Waldheim.
Ed's three years of treatment for stage IV lung cancer has ended and he has been placed on hospice.
Ed has impacted many people on his life’s journey, whether it was in the off-road community, the S.O.I. Motorhome club, or groups such as the Optimist Club, Relay For Life, and many other circles.

We are requesting thank you notes or cards to be sent to Ed to remind him how thankful we are of his help, support, and guidance along the way.
These will be delivered and read to Ed during this holiday season.

You can mail letters to:
Ed Waldheim
3550 Foothill Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91214

Or email to:
ChrisWFO@aol.com





Tuesday, November 26, 2019

ROV DRIVER EDUCATION - Biologists Complete SxS Training

Biologists Complete ROHVA Basic Driver Course


QWR congratulates the biologists and specialists from AECOM and Applied Technology & Science (A-T-S) who recently completed the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA) ROV Basic DriverCourse (RBDC) taught at the Diablo MX Park located in Brentwood, California. 

These ROHVA classes were offered in recognition of the growing partnership between the scientific community and OHV professionals that both share a common commitment to managed and sustainable high quality recreation opportunities for both non-motorized and motorized activities.

Students Practice Exercise 4
  
As many land agencies and environmental consulting firms know, Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles (ROVs) or Side-by-Sides (SxSs) are becoming increasingly popular and are the fastest growing segment of the powersports market.  These useful vehicles are also becoming an important land management or research tool.

QWR offers the RBDC course for agency staff, contractors, and 1st responders that need to get certified or recertified before operating a government or corporate SxS. 

QWR believes that external partners will have an increasingly important role to play in helping provide access to certified safety instruction for staff that needs training.

Don Amador, President of Quiet Warrior Racing/Consulting, states, “It is a privilege and also fun to help train agency or corporate employees about how to operate their SxS vehicles in a safe and environmentally sound manner.”

“I really enjoyed seeing the RBDC students (many of them were new to driving SxSs) gain confidence over the course of the day using the skills they learned to safely operate their vehicle,” Amador concludes.

QWR appreciates the dedication of the biologists who want to protect natural resources for future generations.  And on recreation projects to ensure that units are maintained in a sustainable manner.

LINK TO ROHVA (Go ahead and take the free online ROHVA E-Course)
http://www.rohva.org/

*If you are interested in having Don teach a ROHVA ROV Basic DriverCourse, contact him at: damador@quietwarriorracing.com

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

HONE OHV LEADERSHIP SKILLS - Apply for the Mendocino RAC

RAC Appointment Letter

QWR believes it is important for OHV club representatives, leaders, or those looking to become leaders to develop their public land advocacy skill-set by serving on boards, commissions, or resource advisory councils (RAC).

By serving on a local RAC, you will meet and work with agency, government, and community leaders.  It is a great way to learn about land management issues, government and stakeholder collaborative processes, and grant funding opportunities.

The Mendocino National Forest, which is a premier destination OHV recreation area, is looking for a person to represent OHV recreation on the RAC.  Please consider applying for this position as it is a great way to serve the OHV community.

Please review the FS News Release below for information.  Please feel free to contact QWR/Don Amador if you have any questions.  Contact via email at: damador@quietwarriorracing.com

FOREST SERVICE RAC NEWS RELEASE

Officials of the Mendocino National Forest are conducting public outreach to fill four permanent seats and two replacement members to establish a full federal advisory committee for Glenn and Colusa Counties.

Once appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture later this spring, the RAC will solicit projects for implementation.  RACs were established as a provision of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000.  By law the 4-year term, fifteen-member committee is composed of a wide representation of National Forest interests organized into the three categories below. An additional member is also appointed as a replacement should a committee member leave for any reason.

The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 or Public Law 110-343 replaced an arrangement that gave counties 25% of Forest Service receipts from logging, grazing, recreation and other activities on national forest lands.

RAC projects must have broad community based support with objectives that may include, but are not limited to: road, trail, and infrastructure maintenance or obliteration; soil productivity improvements; improvements in forest ecosystem health; watershed restoration and maintenance; restoration, maintenance, and improvement of wildlife and fish habitat; control of noxious and exotic weeds; hazardous fuels reduction; and reintroduction of native species. Projects must be on public land but can occur on private land if it can be demonstrated that there is a benefit to public land resources.

Interested applicants can apply for the Glenn\Colusa County RAC membership.  An interest form is available on the Mendocino National Forest website at: http://fsweb.mendocino.r5.fs.fed.us
Applicants must complete a cover letter and the short interest form.  Please address your correspondence to Ann Carlson, Forest Supervisor, 825 North Humboldt Ave., Willows, CA 95988.   Once committee members are selected an additional background screening will occur by the FBI. 

For additional information about the Secure Rural Schools legislation, including Titles I, II and III, please visit the SRS website at www.fs.fed.us/srs.  For further information or questions please contact, Christine Hill, District Ranger or Zach Rich, RAC Coordinator at (530) 934-3316 or Zach at-zachary.j.rich@usda.gov

###

Thanks for your review of this RAC opportunity.

Don Amador
Member, BLM Central CA RAC
Member, FS Region 5 Recreation RAC (2011-2015)