Online petition re Canadian River

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SailAway
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Online petition re Canadian River

Post by SailAway »

Just got this via e-mail:

ATTENTION - ATTENTION - ATTENTION

<http://www.petitiononline.com/sb1335/>Continued Public Access on
Texas Owned Rivers Petition (http://www.petitiononline.com/sb1335/)

Your rights as a Texas citizen to access Canadian River are at risk. Many of our State Legislators are sponsoring House Bills 206, 305, and Senate Bill 155 that will eliminate your access to all Texas State riverbeds, which include the Canadian River. Please contact the Amarillo area motorcycle dealers, Amarillo Off-Road Supply, and Danny's Dune Buggies for information to help prevent this from occurring. It's imperative that you write Senator Teel Bivins and David Swinford, your state legislators to inform them that you are apposed to such legislation.

From: Joel Wolfson

ATTN: People that use the Canadian River:

Our rights to use the River area We have had for over 50 Years are being SERIOUSLY threatened by some powerful Texas politicians. This threat is VERY SERIOUS and We can easily LOSE our rights to play in the Canadian River area very soon!! THIS is a REAL THREAT to our rights to do as We have done for a long, long time!! Once again, please realize that this is NO JOKE!!. The Texas Agricultural Commissioner, SUSAN COMBS, has introduced House Bill #206 which is a serious attempt to CLOSE ALL TEXAS RIVERS TO OFF-ROAD USE. Please, let's ALL work together to stop this before it becomes law!! Every person, young, old, male or female should write to the legislators named below and tell them that WE are opposed to the closing of ANY OFF-ROAD Areas in the state of Texas! People, there is strength in numbers, and We have the numbers if We will organize and let these legislators in Austin know that We are serious about saving the land that We have enjoyed for such a long time. Don't sit on Your butts and do nothing or We will lose this WAR!! Please, WRITE LETTERS to all of the people named below and let them know how You feel about the closing of OUR favorite place to play!! What these people are trying to do is steal from the people, land that belongs to the people!! I, personally, love to ride in the Canadian River area and I know that there are thousands of US that use the Canadian River for recreation and it (the River) is a source of great pleasure and fun for Us and our families!! Lets don't let ourselves get screwed by some downstate politicians that are sucking-up to some rich ranchers that own land next to river areas. At this point, the Rivers of Texas STILL BELONG TO THE PEOPLE OF TEXAS!! Lets keep it that way!! Write letters, make phone calls, and TAKE THIS MATTER
SEROUSLY!!

Joel Wolfson, Amarillo jwolfson@arn.net
Vicki Warren
President of DUNERS and Friends of
Dumont Dunes user groups
http://www.duners.org
http://www.FriendsOfDumontDunes.org

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get the low down

Post by Dune Dragin »

For information check out Texas Legislature Online
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us

Find your Texas representatives
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/fyi/fyi.htm

Read the Senate Bill 155 for your self http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/cgi-bin/ ... N=1&TYPE=B

So state owned watercourses could be restricted or limited to vehicle usage...if there is destruction or polution to these watercourses a fine of $50 to $1000.00 and class B misdemeanor penalty enforced.
(misdemeanor...I know the more I miss de meaner I get!) :twisted:
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/cgi-bin/ ... N=1&TYPE=B
READ FOR YOUR SELF HOUSE BILL 206.

House Bill 305:http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/cgi-bin/ ... N=1&TYPE=B
Sec. 90.002. OPERATION OF MOTOR VEHICLE IN PROTECTED
FRESHWATER AREA PROHIBITED. No person may operate a motor vehicle in or on a protected freshwater area.

Sec. 90.005. PUBLIC ACCESS. (a) Except as otherwise
allowed by law, no person may restrict, obstruct, intefere with, or
limit public recreational use of a protected freshwater area.

:? So will someone explain to me what 90.005 is getting at?

Our Texas reps go to work Tues 1-14-03...they will be sworn in and an updated list of those guys and gals that have been elected will be available at the link above.
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Post by Sandy T. »

Thanks for the info! I'll pass it along to everyone I know who want's to be heard!
Sandy T.

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Post by Dune Dragin »

NOTE ON H.B. 155 substitute as of April 7, 2003
TPWC
effective Sept. 1, 2003


COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE FOR S.B. No. 155 By: Estes

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT

relating to the protection and use of public freshwater areas;
providing a penalty.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
SECTION 1. Title 5, Parks and Wildlife Code, is amended by
adding Subtitle I to read as follows:

SUBTITLE I. PROTECTED FRESHWATER AREAS

CHAPTER 90. ACCESS TO PROTECTED FRESHWATER AREAS
Sec. 90.001. DEFINITIONS. In this chapter:
(1) "Emergency" means a condition or circumstance in
which a person reasonably believes that an individual has sustained
serious bodily injury or is in imminent danger of serious bodily
injury or that property has sustained significant damage or
destruction or is in imminent danger of significant damage or
destruction.
(2) "Motor vehicle" means any wheeled or tracked
vehicle, machine, tractor, trailer, or semitrailer propelled or
drawn by mechanical power and used to transport a person or things.
(3) "Protected freshwater area" means the bottom, bed,
or bank of any navigable river or stream within the gradient
boundaries. The term does not include that portion of a bed,
bottom, or bank that lies below tidewater limits.
Sec. 90.002. STATEMENT OF POLICY. (a) The legislature
recognizes that navigable rivers and their beds are precious and
irreplaceable state resources that deserve protection. Public
access to these areas is a right and an important economic and
recreational interest of Texas and must be protected.
(b) The protection of public access under Subsection (a)
should not come at the cost of uncontrolled damage to these
resources or the infringement on private property rights.
Sec. 90.003. OPERATION OF MOTOR VEHICLE IN PROTECTED
FRESHWATER AREA PROHIBITED. On or after January 1, 2004, no person
may operate a motor vehicle in or on a protected freshwater area.
Sec. 90.004. EXEMPTIONS. (a) Section 90.003 does not
apply to:
(1) a state, county, or municipal road right-of-way;
(2) a private road crossing established before January
1, 2003; or
(3) operation of a motor vehicle by:
(A) a federal, state, or local government
employee if operation of a motor vehicle is necessary for
conducting official business;
(B) an owner of the adjacent uplands and the
owner's agents, employees, representatives, and lessees for
reasonable purposes related to usual and customary agricultural
purposes;
(C) an owner of the adjacent uplands and the
owner's lessees and sublessees, and their respective agents,
employees, representatives, licensees, invitees, and guests for
reasonable purposes related to usual and customary camp operations
at camps regulated under Chapter 141, Health and Safety Code;
(D) an owner of the adjacent uplands and the
owner's lessees and sublessees, and their respective agents,
employees, representatives, licensees, invitees, and guests for
reasonable purposes related to usual and customary operation of
retreat facilities owned by a Texas nonprofit corporation chartered
under the laws of this state before January 1, 1970;
(E) a person if operation of a motor vehicle is
necessary to and is authorized by a mineral lease or crossing
easement granted by the General Land Office under the Natural
Resources Code;
(F) a person if operation of a motor vehicle is
necessary to an activity authorized by Chapter 86;
(G) a person in response to an emergency; or
(H) a person if the operation of a motor vehicle
is necessary for the lawful construction, operation, or maintenance
of facilities used for:
(i) the production, transportation,
transmission, or distribution of electric power;
(ii) the provision of telecommunications
services;
(iii) the transportation of oil, natural gas, coal, and the products thereof; or
(iv) dredge material disposal placement.
(b) A person exempt under this section who operates a motor
vehicle in or on a protected freshwater area shall do so in a manner
that avoids, to the extent reasonably possible, harming or
disturbing vegetation, wildlife, or wildlife habitat within the
protected freshwater area. A person exempt under this section who
is crossing a protected freshwater area shall cross by the most
direct feasible route.
(c) This chapter does not apply to any river with headwaters
in New Mexico or Colorado and a confluence in Oklahoma.
Sec. 90.005. LOCAL RIVER ACCESS PLANS. (a) A county,
municipality, or river authority may adopt a local plan that
applies to protected freshwater areas within its jurisdiction.
(b) A local plan adopted under this section may:
(1) notwithstanding the prohibition in Section
90.003, allow for limited motor vehicle use;
(2) provide for collection of a fee based on the
limited use of motorized vehicles in protected freshwater areas
within its jurisdiction or access and services provided under the
local plan; and
(3) establish other measures consistent with the
policy and purposes of this chapter.
(c) A local plan adopted under this section is not effective
until approved in writing by the department.
(d) In determining whether to approve, disapprove, or
modify a local plan, the department shall consider whether the
plan:
(1) protects fish, wildlife, water quality, and other
natural resources;
(2) protects public safety;
(3) provides for adequate enforcement;
(4) coordinates with adjacent and overlapping
jurisdictions;
(5) provides for and publicizes adequate public access opportunities;
(6) provides for adequate public services; and
(7) protects private property rights.
(e) The department by rule may adopt additional criteria or
procedures to govern approval of local plans. Lack of rules adopted
under this authority is not a basis for rejecting a local plan.
(f) The department shall revoke its approval of a local plan
if the department finds, as the result of a periodic review, that
the plan as implemented fails to meet any of the criteria for
approval established under this section.
Sec. 90.006. ASSISTANCE FROM THE DEPARTMENT. (a) The
department shall assist counties, municipalities, and river
authorities in developing local plans.
(b) The department may conduct studies as necessary to
implement its duties under this chapter.
(c) The department shall prioritize the use of grant funds
under Chapter 24 to achieve the objectives of this chapter.
(d) A jurisdiction operating under a local plan shall remit
to the department 20 percent of its gross receipts, if any, from the
fees charged under Section 90.005(b) to offset the department's
administrative costs associated with implementing this chapter.
(e) The department shall seek and use available federal and
other funds and shall work with governmental entitites, landowners,
nonprofit groups, and other interested parties to identify and
facilitate development of sites for motor vehicle recreation other
than protected freshwater areas.
(f) The department shall provide a report to the legislature
regarding its activities under Subsection (e) not later than
September 1, 2004.
Sec. 90.007. LANDOWNER RIGHTS. (a) A prescriptive
easement over private property cannot be created by recreational
use of a protected freshwater area, including by portage over or
around barriers or by scouting of obstructions, or crossing private
property to or from a protected freshwater area.
(b) Nothing in this section shall limit the right of a
person to navigate in, on, or around a protected freshwater area.
Sec. 90.008. PUBLIC ACCESS. Except as otherwise allowed by law, no person may restrict, obstruct, interfere with, or limit
public recreational use of a protected freshwater area.
Sec. 90.009. ENFORCEMENT. All peace officers of this state
shall enforce the provisions of this chapter.
Sec. 90.010. PENALTY. (a) A person commits an offense if
the person violates Section 90.003 or 90.008.
(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), an offense under
Subsection (a) is a Class C misdemeanor.
(c) If it is shown on the trial of an offense under this
section that the defendant was previously convicted two or more
times under Section 90.003 or 90.008, on conviction the defendant
shall be punished for a Class B misdemeanor.
(d) Each day of a violation under this section is a separate
offense.
SECTION 2. This Act takes effect September 1, 2003.

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Post by Dune Dragin »

I also found this to be interesting:

http://www.audubon.org/chapter/tx/tx/Co ... 0Final.doc

April 22, 2003


Committee on State Cultural and Recreational Resources
Honorable Harvey Hilderbran, Chair
Honorable Charlie L. Geren, Vice-Chair
Honorable Kevin Bailey
Honorable Byron C. Cook
Honorable Dawnna M. Dukes
Honorable Edmund Kuemple
Honorable Larry Phillips



A JOINT LETTER SUPPORTING PASSAGE OF SB 155 AND HB 305



Dear Representatives:

The undersigned individuals, representing our respective organizations, would like to convey our full support for the passage of Senate Bill 155 and House Bill 305, each relating to the protection of freshwater areas. These important pieces of legislation would ban the use of off-road vehicles within the state’s rivers and streams.

Not long ago, there were very few vehicles driving in Texas rivers. However, in the last few years our rivers and streams have become the playground for thousands of off-road enthusiasts. The result is alarming. One site study by Texas Parks and Wildlife Biologist Dr. Gary Garrett, reported, “Their (off-road vehicles) impact was dramatically evident. There was little to no aquatic vegetation, virtually no riparian vegetation, and the substrate had the appearance of heavy scouring.” In addition, comparisons of fish populations at pristine locations and vehicle-traveled locations reflected a sharp disparity.

Also at issue is the safety of other river users who enjoy such traditional activities as swimming, canoeing, fishing, and picnicking. These traditional uses of Texas rivers are all but taken away when faced with an oncoming caravan of 4x4 vehicles.

As you will note, our organizations represent a wide variety of interests. We are united in our support for these bills because they represent a balanced approach to a serious problem. Please note Section 90.005 that states, “…no person may restrict, obstruct, interfere with, or limit public recreational use of a protected fresh water area.” While these bills do limit the means by which one may access a river, they do not limit access.

In conclusion, our rivers are not roads and should not be treated as such. Thank you for your consideration of this legislation. If we can ever be of assistance on this or any other issue, please let us know.

Sincerely,


AUDUBON TEXAS

HILL COUNTRY CONSERVANCY

LONE STAR CHAPTER, SIERRA CLUB

NATIONAL WILDLIFE FEDERATION

NUECES RIVER AUTHORITY

SAN MARCOS RIVER FOUNDATION

STEWARDS OF THE NUECES

TEXAS CHAPTER OF THE WILDLIFE SOCIETY

TEXAS FARM BUREAU

TEXAS RIVERS PROTECTION ASSOCIATION

TEXAS SHEEP AND GOAT RAISERS ASSOCIATION

TEXAS AND SOUTHWESTERN CATTLE RAISERS ASSOCIATION

TEXAS WATER CONSERVATION ASSOCIATION

TEXAS WILDLIFE ASSOCIATION

Each entity has given express written consent to be listed as may be confirmed by contacting the Nueces River Authority or the individual entity.
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Post by Crowdog »

Off-road ban legislation may exclude Canadian River

By JESSICA RAYNOR
jraynor@amarillonet.com


Off-road riders in the sandy and muddy Canadian River bed won't be getting in legal trouble anytime soon thanks to a Senate bill tentatively passed Wednesday that excludes the river from an off-roading ban.

The bill, introduced in December, prohibits the operation of motorized vehicles in public fresh waters or on the bed of navigable waters above tidewater limits with certain exceptions. Offenders would be charged with a Class C misdemeanor.

Sen. Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls, added a chapter to the bill excluding the Canadian River while the bill was in the Senate's Natural Resource Committee, said Lewis Simmons, Estes' district director.

Rep. David Swinford, R-Dumas, said he worked extensively with lawmakers and concerned parties to make sure the Canadian River wasn't affected. He felt it was public land, and the public should have a say.

"I didn't feel like it was right to take that away from our citizens without them having comment (before the bill was brought)," he said.

That didn't stop off-roaders from making their voices heard after the bill became public.

Thousands signed petitions around the area at off-roading bike and all-terrain vehicle shops, including Danny's Volks Stuff and Route 66 Cycle World in Amarillo, said Danny Phillips, the shop's owner.

"They're very excited about it," Phillips said of his customers. "About half of my customers that come in, they're happy that it's not going to be closed down."

The Canadian River, north of Amarillo, provides the only outlet in the area for off-roading enthusiasts, he said.

"It's important to the community," he said, "even people going out there stopping at the convenience stores, besides the merchants that sell the bikes and ATV's (all-terrain vehicles).

Agriculture Commissioner Susan Combs lobbied for the bill, worried that damage from off-roading was most severe at the Nueces, Canadian and Llano rivers.

However, Swinford said the damming of the Canadian River at Lake Meredith made its stream negligible, making the environmental effects negligible as well. But that's as long as the off-roaders clean up their mess, he said.

"They're (off-roaders) organized," he said. "I asked them to make a commitment to be good neighbors to make sure of people's fences, to get their trash cleaned up."

The bill passed Thursday will undergo revisions before being brought to the Senate floor Tuesday for a final vote, Swinford said. From there it will go to the House of Representatives, where Swinford expects it to pass pretty quickly.

"It's a real big deal for nothing," he said.

"They're taking away the public's right to use the public's land."

http://www.amarillonet.com/stories/0418 ... dban.shtml

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Post by Dune Dragin »

"They're taking away the public's right to use the public's land."
Yea, I call that a big deal.

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Post by Dune Dragin »

(d) A jurisdiction operating under a local plan shall remit
to the department 20 percent of its gross receipts, if any, from the
fees charged under Section 90.005(b) to offset the department's
administrative costs associated with implementing this chapter.
How happy are you Amarillo? :lol: $$$$$$$$$$$ :shock:
How about you folks in South TX, East TX, West TX? No access :!:

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Post by Dune Dragin »

In a letter form THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS, Senator Teel Bivins responded to me concerning SB 155 "River Rights".
I would like to share some of that with you:

...SB155 was passed by the Texas Senate on April 24. The bill is now pending in the Texas House, where it has been assigned to the State Cultural and Recreational Resources Committee.
Ultimately, I felt comfortable voting for this bill since its language appears to exempt the Canadian River. I have received a large amount of input from off-road enthusiast and other recreationists in my district who did not want the bill's restrictions to be applied to the Canadian. I'm glad SB 155 accommodateds their wishes.

I must admit that it is nice to hear directly from Teel Bivins. Know he is on the job and listening to the people. He is the kind of represenative the people need.
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Post by LoBuck »

Brenda,

Thanks for sharing the news. The only thing better than knowing your govt reps are listening to you, is getting word back from them telling you that they in fact did listen. Do your best to make sure all of your friends know who Senator Teel Bivins is. :D
Glenn Montgomery - KE7BTP
'79 CJ5
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DAC ISDRA Sub Group Member - AZ OHV Rep BLM ISDRA DSG webpage

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