Monday, 15 July 2024

Brandon: First Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument public meeting a success

On Sept. 14, the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service co-hosted a most interesting and engaging public meeting in Upper Lake, as the first of three important community conversations to discuss the management plan for the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument. 

Attendance was so large most of the agency representatives remarked on it, but given the tremendous community support for the proper protection and management of these lands that was expressed during the campaign for permanent protection a large turnout probably should have surprised no one.

The format did not include a formal presentation. Instead, the plan was to give people from our community an opportunity to talk face to face with the folks from our federal agencies, and to examine an impressive array of maps, fact sheets, photographs and other resources, including such specialized items as a rainfall map of the national monument, and a map showing fire scars on the landscape.  

These conversations are powerful opportunities for the public to express what they value most in the management of this region. 

Public input – both oral and written – was requested continually, and agency staff displayed an obvious keen interest in what we had to say.

For those who were not able to attend, do try to get to one of the remaining meetings: Sept. 28 at the Winters Community Center, 201 Railroad Ave;  and Oct. 4 at the Holiday Inn Express, 545 N. Humboldt Ave in Willows. Both take place from from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Victoria Brandon is chair of the Sierra Club Redwood Chapter. She lives in Lower Lake, Calif.

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