The Mono County Supervisors have directed staff to write a letter stating their support for the Boxer/McKeon Wilderness Bills, and to place it on the regular agenda for August 19th.
Congressman McKeons staffer Bob Hauter was present to explain some last minute changes, and explained to the Supes that their support amounts to a lot in Washington. The support of the local governing bodies is crucial information for other congressmen and women who may not be familiar with the areas in question, Hauter said.
According to comments made at the meeting, the letter of support should earn a unanimous 5-0 endorsement from the Board.
Chairwoman Bauer, who respectfully asked the roomful of citizens to forego comments unless they had not already been heard, went on to say that she supported the bill, and that she appreciated the level of detail that went into the newest version.
For Supervisors Farnetti and Hunt in Mammoth, the decision was easy. Both acknowledge that their constituencies overwhelmingly support the legislation, and they have supported it from the beginning.
For other Supervisors, an endorsement has been more difficult.
Supervisor Hazard explained that his constituents are evenly divided between the two sides. Hazard explained that he was not ready to move forward at the June meeting because of lingering concerns. He was told at that time they would be addressed, and they have been. I cannot ask for any more, Hazard said, and is now ready to sign on.
Reid believes the majority of his constituents are against this bill, but explained that those same constituents have been largely absent from the public debate on the issue when the supporters of the bills have been a visible presence throughout. Im personally not a big fan of Wilderness, Reid told the room, but has said in the past that the legislation did not include any deal breakers for him, and he is ready to sign on.
The Supervisors’ 5-0 vote directing staff to prepare the letter was greeted with hearty applause.