The Rescue Tellico Coalition battle plan for the 30 day comment period following the Forest Service (FS) Environmental Analysis (EA), what YOU can do! Of course you can write, call or visit elected officials and Forest Service (FS) representatives all through the process!
Week 1 - Feb 28- March 8
This has already passed! Hopefully you have already written at least one letter and made one phone call!
Week 2 - March 9 - March 15
This week SFWDA wants us to focus on personal contact, phone or visit, with your own U.S. Senators and U.S. Representative (congressman) and state government officials. If you do not know who your elected officials are go here to find out: Project Vote Smart - American Government, Elections, Candidates and Voting
. If you put in your complete nine digit zip code it will tell you exactly who your Senators and Congressmen are.
You can then go to their individual web pages and find their phone numbers. Make a call to their office. You will not speak to the official but you will get one of their staff. Usually an aide fresh out of college so don't be intimidated.
Tell them that you are concerned that the U.S. Forest Service has betrayed all your hard volunteer work at the Upper Tellico OHV and now wants to close the trails you have worked and ridden on for years. Their reasons hinge on old and infrequent scientific studies which new, independant research shows is flawed, and on the Forest Service's contention that The Forest Service Management Plan trail density specifications are being exceeded. The FS drew a small circle around the existing trails and use that acreage instead of the total 8,000 acres that the Upper tellico OHV area encompases to determine the trail miles to square miles of acreage ratio, trail density.
They are required by law to note your concern, look into it and respond to you via phone, snail mail or email.
An actual face to face would be even better but very few of us have the time, money, resources to make this happen. You may be able to have a face to face with your state elected officials though, depending on where you live.
Week 3 - March 16 - March 22
This week focus on letters to ALL of your elected officials, both federal and state! We are focusing on elected officials because we believe that the FS will listen to "top down" dialogue better than "bottom up" dialogue. Using the same "talking points", stress to them that the FS has betrayed 30 years of volunteer man hours and millions of dollars in donations by our 4x4 organizations and taken the easy way out rather than work with us on a compromise solution to benefit ALL Americans!
Week 4 - March 23 - March 29
This week we will focus on letters and calls to the U.S. Forest Service, North Carolina Forest Service Supervisor Marisue Hilliard, Upper Tellico Project Manager Candace Wyman and Tusquitee District Ranger Steve Lohr. This week we will use ALL of the different "talking points" that we develop to flood them with a barrage fo letters and calls in support of keeping the Upper Tellico OHV area open for ALL Americans to enjoy!