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 Post subject: Ester Valley Road
PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 3:53 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 9:03 pm
Posts: 434
Location: Fairbanks
The latest from Geoff Orth:


Hi Folks,

The Ester Valley Road is still blocked by a locked gate at the entrance. The strategy of Largent is to delay, delay, then file more paper, and make it as costly as possible. He has filed 12 motions, including three requests for summary judgment (failure to join the state and borough as indispensable parties, federal preemption, and a ruling of law). No matter how frivolous these motions are, we must give a strong and detailed response. This is getting expensive, but I believe we will be successful with the Ester Valley access, as we were with the Eva Creek Trail. As of 11 March, my costs:

Donations Received 19,026.73
Eva Creek Trail Legal Fees -9,082.45
Eva Creek Settlement Compensation 2,000.00
Ester Valley Trail Legal Fees -30,893.39
Current Balance $ -18,949.11

As you can see, we’re in the hole…

A short recap. This email is going out to 134 individuals and 13 local user groups. We have received funding from 39 sources, averaging $556 each. So far the largest donation is over $4,400 from a local trail organization. For the record, my wife and I have contributed $4,000. Beyond this contribution and my time in litigation, we are personally financially responsible.

Obviously, with litigation, there are no guaranteed outcomes, but I feel we have a good position; and if we don’t act, we are setting a precedent and are guaranteed to lose access to these trails. The bottom line: I’ve lived in Ester for over 30 years. Like many of you, the quality of life here, including its close proximity to trails, is important to me. Now, looking back, a $1,000 donation works out to $33/year… a reasonable amount to ensure access is maintained to this resource we all enjoy. If you’ve already donated, then stand aside for now… if you haven’t, then now would be a good time to reach for your wallet.

Remember, this is a multi-use, multi-season trail/road providing critical access to public lands further west in Ester Valley and Ester Dome. The Ester Valley Trail/Road has existed since 1906, prior to any mining patents being granted, thus establishing a R.S. 2477 designation (R.S. 2477 status creates a right-of-way before the land was private). In addition, there has been open and continuous use by the public since the 1960’s, thus creating a prescriptive easement (AS 09.45.052 (d)). There are also right-of-way easements in recorded warranty deeds. These are right-of-ways, granting public access, that are dominant over the landowner. The Largents, by blocking access, are in effect trying to privatize a public resource. As a side note, the Largents in 2006 assured me that they realized that the road was a public right-of-way. If you have any questions, want more information, or would like to see a copy of our Opposition to their requests for Summary Judgment, drop me an email.

Your donations have gone a long way in preserving access rights for future generations; I greatly appreciate your financial support in this effort. Send donations payable to Law Offices William Satterberg, 709 4th Avenue, Fairbanks, AK 99701-4416. Write fbo Ester Trails Defense on the “memo” line and cc me so I can track the funding (p.s. They take credit/debit cards, unfortunately, no PayPal.).

Thanks all,

Geoff

--
Geoffrey Orth Photography
Stray Dogs LLC
P.O. Box 22 Ester, AK 99725 USA
v: +1.907.479.0014 f: +1.907.479.0015
Skype or +1.805.624.6360
gcorth@straydogs.us
--
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Paul S. Renschen


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 Post subject: Re: Ester Valley Road
PostPosted: Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:15 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 26, 2004 9:03 pm
Posts: 434
Location: Fairbanks
Here's the latest:


During the FNSB work session, held on 7 August, some interesting comments were made. The audio is archived at the following link (discussion of Ester Valley access starts at 10:25 minutes):

http://co.fairbanks.ak.us/Assembly%20Me ... 7COWT2.mp3

I responded to the numerous errors and omissions with the email and attachments below. It appears that by its passive stance, the borough is condoning the privatization of this public access.

A short recap. This email is going out to over 190 individuals and 13 local user groups. We have received funding from 51 sources, averaging $970 each. For the record, my wife and I have contributed $28,000.

Donations Received 57,603
Eva Creek Trail Legal Fees -9,082
Eva Creek Settlement Compensation 2,000
Ester Valley Trail Legal Fees -56,226
Current Balance $ -5,706

Thanks all!

Geoff


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Ester Valley Access Issues
Date: Wed, 20 Aug 2014 13:52:24 -0800
From: Geoffrey Orth <gcorth@straydogs.us>
To: Diane Hutchison <dhutchison@fnsb.us>, Guy Sattley <gsattley@fnsb.us>, Janice Golub <jgolub@fnsb.us>, John Davies <jdavies@fnsb.us>, Karl Kassel <kkassel@fnsb.us>, Kathryn Dodge <kdodge@fnsb.us>, Lance Roberts <lroberts@fnsb.us>, Michael Dukes <mdukes@fnsb.us>, Van Lawrence <vlawrence@fnsb.us>
CC: Luke Hopkins <mayor@co.fairbanks.ak.us>, ".Tom Hancock" <thancock@fnsb.us>, Kerry Barnes <KBarnes@fnsb.us>, Bill Satterberg <bill@satterberg.net>, Eric Troyer <fbxtrails@gmail.com>

Dear Assembly Members,

With all due respect to Mayor Hopkins and his staff, during the FNSB
Work Session held 7 August, discussions regarding right-of-way and
access in the Ester Valley (of which I'm a plaintiff in litigation),
contained some errors and omissions.

First, this is not a trail issue, it is a right-of-way access issue.
The term trail is misleading; it is actually a doubletrack mining road
that sees year round use by the public to access state and borough lands
to the west. References to the FNSB Comprehensive Recreational Trail
Plan are completely irrelevant.

Second, we are only asking for access across the Largent's property.
From point A to point B, 24/7, which has been the traditional case
since 1903. No alternate route has been proposed by the Largents. They
have suggested a route which is already in existence, not on their
property, unsuited to many of the activities performed via the current
route in the past, and a diversion which is at least an hours walking
distance from the current access point.

Third, the Largents have repeatedly refused requests for access by the
general public. Free passage is not allowed, they have charged me with
criminal trespass.

Fourth, these are easements, granting public access, that the landowner
cannot interfere with. The Largents, by blocking access, are in effect
trying to privatize a public resource without going through a public
process. It could also be argued that these actions place them in trespass.

Finally, I've attached a briefing and an aerial photo (blue points
denote blockages, teal outlines Largent's private property, yellow
outlines placer mining operations) to help clarify the situation. If you
have any questions or require additional information, please don't
hesitate in contacting me.

Thanks,

Geoff

--
Geoffrey Orth
Stray Dogs LLC
P.O. Box 22 Ester, AK 99725 USA
v: +1.907.479.0014 f: +1.907.479.0015
Skype or +1.805.624.6360
gcorth@straydogs.us


There is an attached map but I am not computer-smart enough to get it to load here.

Paul

_________________
Paul S. Renschen


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 Post subject: Re: Ester Valley Road
PostPosted: Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:23 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2003 9:13 am
Posts: 443
Location: Skiland on Cleary Summit Mile 20.5 Steese Highway
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