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 Post subject: RS2477 Concerns
PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2017 5:56 am 
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Following is a call for support from the Alaska Outdoor Council (AOC). This issue is specifically related to the designation of RS2477 access routes and may directly impact us here in the Interior. RS2477 is the designation of routes that guarantees all trail users in Alaska the right to access to and through state lands. If, as being proposed by the Governor, RS2477 access termination is ignored or modified, we will/could lose our ability to use local trails. If this is allowed to happen anywhere in the state it can and will affect us all. Please read Karen's note below and call the Governors office asking him not to change any RS2477 designated routes.

Quote:
Friends…

You might not fish or recreate at Klutina Lake, but Governor Walker is negotiating away our state’s rights, guaranteed by federal law, to access the Klutina Road from Copper Center all the way to Klutina Lake, plus associated parking areas, and more, under pressure from Ahtna Native Corporation.

Open and free access to this road and many other roads and trails in Alaska is granted based on a federal law from the 1800s. Now Governor Walker is buckling to pressure from Ahtna Native Corporation to revoke that which is already, and has been, our right of access by law. In fact, this road was in place decades before Ahtna selected land on which this road runs, and now Ahtna is trying to leverage the Governor to keep us off of it.

http://mustreadalaska.com/walker-rolls- ... g-grounds/

Read the above article, then please call the Governor’s office.

Fairbanks: 451-2920
Anchorage: 269-7450
MatSu: 761-5690

Then send him a note here: http://aws.state.ak.us/CrmForms/Home/Feedback

RS2477 rights of way were supposed to be granted in perpetuity. Those are our public access routes to lands to hunt, fish, trap, and recreate the Governor is giving away so cavalierly. And once he sets the precedent that an RS2477 road or trail can be bartered off under political pressure from special interests, then it will happen again and again with many of the 600 or so documented roads and trails at risk of being wiped off the map as well.

There can only be a domino effect on other RS2477 roads or trails if access to the Klutina Road is allowed to be compromised. What road or trail will be the next one to go? Which corporation will be next in line to knock at the Governor’s door to ask for a similar gift of exclusion from access by the public? It appears to me the Governor is treating one class of people preferentially instead of all Alaskans equally as mandated in the Alaska Constitution, which he swore to uphold.

Please call the Governor’s office today to express your displeasure with this potentially immense loss of access for outdoor users now and into the future. The Governor needs to uphold the Constitution and cease negotiations with Ahtna now.

Here is more information on RS2477 trails…

http://dnr.alaska.gov/mlw/factsht/land_fs/rs2477.pdf

Thanks much for helping to stop this now.

Karen

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 Post subject: Re: RS2477 Concerns
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 11:49 am 
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From Tammie Wilson's Chief of Staff and contact information. I will be sending each of the committee members an email on my concerns, would suggest everyone else who is concerned do the same. If you wonder why, just remember that some of our local trails are provided access because of their RS2477 status in whole or in part.

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Hi john,

I just spoke to Rynnieva Moss who is the Chief of Staff for Senator Coghill. The Senator sits on Senate Judiciary where the AG is in committee for confirmation hearings. She indicated that the Committee has held up this hearings at this time due to the RS2477 issues. I have provided the information on those legislators that sit on the Senate Judiciary Committee in case you wish to contact them with your concerns.

Standing Committee

http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Member/image ... CGLSenator John Coghill Chair

Email: Senator.John.Coghill@akleg.gov

Phone:907-465-3719

·

http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Member/image ... COSSenator Mia Costello Member

Email: Senator.Mia.Costello@akleg.gov
Phone: 907-465-4968

·

http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Member/image ... MEYSenator Kevin Meyer Member

Email: Senator.Kevin.Meyer@akleg.gov

Phone:907-465-4945

http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Member/image ... KEPSenator Pete Kelly Member

Email: Senator.Pete.Kelly@akleg.gov
Phone:907-465-3709


http://www.akleg.gov/basis/Member/image ... WIESenator Bill Wielechowski Member

Email: Senator.Bill.Wielechowski@akleg.gov
Phone:907-465-2435

Barbara A Barnes, Chief of Staff
Representative Tammie Wilson

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 Post subject: Re: RS2477 Concerns
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:50 pm 
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Well John I made a few phone calls. I guess we'll see if enough people complain about this and it makes any difference.

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 Post subject: Re: RS2477 Concerns
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:12 pm 
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Were getting some movement, but lets see what the Gov'n does...

Attachment:
Rep. George Rauscher to Gov'n.pdf


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 Post subject: Re: RS2477 Concerns
PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:26 am 
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Some update info put out by the Gov'n office and a summarize with comments.

Summary (Official Press Release attached)

March 23 Press Release: Governor admits negotiating away public rights on Klutina Road

The Governor claims “Any settlement will include a 100-foot right-of-way and opportunities for fishing, camping and boating.” The uses already exist as public rights within the RS2477 right-of-way (ROW)—any agreement to limit those uses would be giving away public rights.

The Governor claims “multiple areas along Klutina Lake Road will be designated where the public can fish and launch boats into the river. The public has the right to access, park, launch a boat, access the river, and camp within the ROW, so any reduction in those uses and where those uses occur would be giving away public rights.

The Governor claims “Areas will be provided for camping and overnight parking and any fee Ahtna charges must be reasonable and similar to fees charged in State campgrounds.” This implies the settlement may limit public rights to specific areas, and Ahtna will be able to charge for those uses in the reduced number of authorized areas. Limiting areas of legal public use and letting the private land owner charge fees for legal public use of the ROW is giving away public rights.

A 2002 AG opinion (available on the Internet) advised “the public may make reasonable use of the right-of-way” including “rest stops, parking, and camping” and reasonable use of the ROW for “vehicular and pedestrian travel, rest stops, parking for recreational uses of the Klutina River, and overnight camping. The AG concluded “Ahtna has no legal authority to regulate the highway by requiring the purchase of permits or the payment of tolls or by prohibiting historic uses of the road by corporate fiat.”

The Governor claims: “The State will secure a road easement to access State lands from the end of the existing road.” This implies the negotiations will not assert the RS 2477 claims to the side trails and airstrip, which access the lake and state properties— settling for less than the ROWs established prior to Ahtna’s conveyance would be giving away public rights.

The Governor states: “The State will secure a 100-foot right-of-way from the New Richardson Highway to Klutina Lake.” The State already secured this ROW when the legislature adopted legislation in 1998 that asserted the Klutina Road and trail; the Governor has a constitutional responsibility to defend that assertion, including all uses—anything less is giving away public rights.

The AG advised that the Department of Transportation “may make improvements to the road reasonably necessary to accommodate the uses made of the road from its establishment circa 1898 through October 21, 1976.” The AG advised “DOT&PF limit improvements in the right-of-way to those that are reasonably necessary to support the historic public uses of the Klutina Lake Road.” Federal courts have held that state law controls the scope of an RS 2477 ROW, including its uses. Federal courts held that prior access rights are upheld by ANCSA, not supplanted. The Interior Board of Land Appeals held that ANCSA 17(b) easements are subject to a valid RS 2477 ROW.

In 2014, the AG provided the legislature a legal opinion (available on the Internet) and warned that any negotiations that narrow the width of the RS 2477 assertion, limit the allowed scope of uses within that ROW, and grant private landowners veto authority over the State’s maintenance and improvement on the ROW would violate the Alaska constitution.

Why is this Governor defending negotiations by the AG that would settle for less public rights than already established by federal and state law?


Attachment:
03-23-17 Reaction to Gov 3-21-17 Klutina PR.PDF


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