Feds are foes to recreational forest access
Friends of Tahoe Forest Access v. U.S. Department of Agriculture
Contact: Ted Hadzi-Antich
Status: Complaint filed on July 17, 2012. Plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on liability filed May 16, 2013.
PLF attorneys represent Friends of Tahoe Forest Access and other recreational enthusiasts in challenging the United States Forest Service’s illegal decision to bar recreational vehicles from hundreds, if not thousands, of miles of roads and trails in the Tahoe National Forest that were previously open to off-road enthusiasts.
The Service’s action came through its implementation of the 2005 Travel Management Rule for the Tahoe National Forest.
PLF argues the Service violated the National Environmental Policy Act by failing to adequately analyze the human impacts of prohibiting access to more than 800 miles of formerly accessible trails, failing to conduct a site-specific analysis of the routes at issue, and improperly prejudicing off-road recreation in developing the purpose and need for the regulatory decision.
Friends of Tahoe Forest Access as well as other recreation groups and individuals participated throughout the NEPA process, and are deeply concerned with the outcome of the regulatory decision-making. Several individuals volunteered much time filing the groups’ administrative appeal and turned to PLF because they do not have the resources to carry forward the litigation on their own. As these groups consist of individuals and families who enjoy off-road recreation and the outdoors experience, they fear the Forest Service’s implementation of the Travel Management Rule will significantly reduce their access to the Tahoe National Forest.