Lapas attēli
PDF
ePub

• a simplified wetlands identification program, and increased certainty for permit

applicants; • simplified procedures by which landowners can affect up to one-half acre of non

tidal wetlands for construction of single-family homes without applying for indi

vidual Section 404 permits; • simplified procedures for adding to existing structures on wetlands properties; • a streamlined Section 404 permit process; • increased State, local, and Tribal roles in protecting wetlands resources; • a simplified wetlands mitigation banking process, to allow property owners to

more easily offset certain wetlands losses by restoring or enhancing other wet

lands. The Department of the Interior has instituted a number of reforms to the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and has made legislative recommendations that would further improve the Act and its implementation. These include:

• exemptions for small landowners from rules relating to threatened species; • increased State roles in ESA implementation; • exemptions for designated small timber interests from certain ESA regulations

relating to the Northern Spotted Owl; • a “no surprises” policy for previously-approved Habitat Conservation Plans.

Under this policy, property owners who agree to help protect endangered species on their property will be assured that their obligations will not be changed

if new species are designated in the future; • multispecies recovery plans.

Again, I urge this Administration to continue along this course. We need to find new ways to make certain Federal programs work better—more flexibly, more fairly.

S. 605, however, represents an inappropriate approach to protecting the rights of property owners, and I urge my colleagues to vote against this bill.

PREPARED STATEMENT OF SENATOR CONRAD BURNS Mr. Chairman, I am pleased that your Committee is having this hearing today. The 104th Congress needs to take a serious look at private property rights. The Judiciary Committee plays an important role in this debate because environmental laws and regulations often are embroiled in this issue.

For too long, Washington has disregarded the Fifth Amendment to our Constitution. Laws, regulations and other actions have allowed the rights of private property owners to be abused. Now we have the opportunity to provide a consistent federal policy to encourage, support, and promote the private ownership of property and to ensure the constitutional and legal rights of private property owners.

I believe Congress should enact legislation which reaffirms our private property rights. Compensation for a loss of property value when the federal government takes actions affecting property is essential. In addition, I believe that a takings impact analysis should be conducted prior to promulgating regulations. If these actions result in a loss of value of the property, some compensation should be required.

Montanans believe that protecting private property is of utmost importance. And Congress should reinforce the government's responsibility to protect property rights. We need to help get the federal government off the backs of Montana's working men and women.

Mr. Chairman, I am pleased your Committee is holding this hearing and I look forward to working with you on this matter in the future.

[ocr errors][graphic][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small][merged small]

I am surely but one more in a long chain of property rights activists who will be secch your committee with plaintive or should I say plaintiff cries for assistance as you wend your way toward pentage of S-605 the property rights protection bill currently under your tulelage. I am. perhana in that I will likely be the sole Rhode Islander who would make comments on behalf of property on supponing the concepts of S-605 and offering some brief constructive criticism long with my beses proke on in response to arguments for or against the concepts embodied in S-605.

People in Washington often joke that I am the only property rights activise in Rhode Island, sine mon consistently participate in the debate at a national level. Our state is relatively snull and ademency prone to the elevation of other problems over propery rights, which has made it quite casy for our the mantle of the state's property righus advocate with liale competition. In so doing. I have faced being labeled by other participants in this debate. Most often I am called an anti-environmentalist, some scene I am a front for developers, a recent internet mailing list publication asserved that I am a front poup for Check Cushman who runs the American Land Righis network out of Battle Ground. Washington.

While I can comment at length about what I am, and what I am not. I would ask in large me you direct your attention on that matter to the attached article entitle “Activise with an avitudki". on September 10 of this year by our major newspaper, The Providence Journal, it encapsulates me my philosophy, activism and the underlying motivations and incidents which lead me to be a start and national advocate on these issues. Suffice it to say, that regardless of what you believe I am now. 6 years ago I was just as back to

1 nature yuppie minding his own business and largely ignorant of this debate. My lase significant role activist was in fighting the Vietnam War and my political tradition was decidedly liberal. Conspiracy theorists who wish to believe that I have become a mind numbed robot answering to industrial meters maust still ask themselves: “How did such an independent cuss become a corporate toady in such a stron tionc. and make such a complete about face in his outwardly apparent politics. Actually, it only fork ons

NI WISETUJH16; • 199 Austin Farm Road • Exeler • RI •

2022

wip down to the bureaucracy store to change my perceptions of government and its role forever. and in much a coinpelling way that I can no longer be satisfied by a day I have lived unless I have driven inochae'r mail into the custin of our country's bureaucracies.

I have purposefully taken the name which environmentalists believe best describes only those interested in so called “wester" issues, because I wish to demonstrate that "Wise Use" is nor id western concept. but one which should apply nationwide. The question of whether we should engage in a policy of sustainable use or abject protectionism is at issue whether the specific manifestation is found in a debate over logging in the Pacific Northwest or David Lucas' plans to build two houses on a beach in South Carolina.

Despite cominents 10 the contrary inade by my opponents in the environmental community. I do nos perceive environmentalism or environmentalists as a conspiracy. "Wise Use". above all else. represents change from the current status quo and it will be attacked, nor by a conspiracy, hul by the natural tendency of society to resist change. Elements in society do nor need 10 band 10gether to resist change. It is not conspiratorial coincidence, but uncreative copycatisin that spreads a similar vernacular amongst the opponents of "Wise Use". Of course they may capitalize on weaknesses inflicted by onc another. just as vultures wait to feed on others' kills. But vultures are not conspirators, they are opportunists.

On the other hand environmentalists are quick to the draw alleging that "Wise Use" is a conspiracy Allegations that I am in some satanic alliance with Chuck Cushman for instance sound a bit paranoid tu me. My knowledge and acquaintance with such national figures has actually been fostered by the environmental communities continued complete rejection of my own point of view and their spurious allegations that it isn't my point of view, but that I serve as a inouthpiece for others. I realized carly un ther I would be lumped in the same group with anyone environmentalist did not like, so I deterinined in meer as many of them as possible and understand their point of view. I have respect for the advocacy of Chuck Cushman. I have discussed the issues of "Wise Use" with Ron Amold perhaps its most recognized mentor. Ironically, I have found these gentlemen because it was assented that I must be in Icaguc with them due to the nature of my rhetoric. I certainly have a working relationship with some of the nationally renown grassroots leaders in the fight for property rights, but I don't come to you as their spukesinan, hut as a simple Rhode Islander who has walked over the coals of regulation, environmental doomsaying, and sacred cow legislation to bring you my own assessment of the situation.

I append to this testimony, as well as the article on my own situation and activism. pieces on ? other Rhode Islanders who are poster children of our struggle here in Rhode Island. The article detailing our moveinent in Rhode Island questions whether I have a developed constituency, in other words, for whom night you presume that I speak. I have served in some capacity as a voluntary ombudsman and support network for individuals in the state for 4 years now. While I have participated in bringing public

-4 scrutiny of the 2 debacles described in the accompanying articles, I have participated as an volunteer adviser in numerous other regulatory matters. My self appointed duties range froin offering a shoulder to cry on to recoinmending legal counsel and in some cases assisting in the formulation of legal. political and PR strategy for those involved in such battles.

It is not entirely unfair to depict me, as reporter Peter Lord did, as a constituency of one in thout the vast najurity of people I deal with have no desire to come out of the closel - as it were. I an unusual

Trimony of Brian Bishop

2

RI WISEUSE

[graphic]

1

But sell that to William Ellen, a successful and respected Virginia marine engineer who is now appealing a prison term and a large fine for having

Gelbed more than 1š acres of Eastern Shore “noncidal wetlands” when he bulldozed these seemingly dry and forested acres to create large nestins ponds for ducks and geese as well as management complex.

Ellen was working on a project fc Paul Tudor Jones II, the high-flyin fetares trader (see p. 184) who August 1987 had bought 3,200 acre in Dorchester County, very do to the Blackwater Wildlife Refur Jones' idea was to create a combir con hunting and conservation pa serve s well as a showplace est: The centerpiece of the project in 103-acre widlife sanctuary develo wich toe assistance of the Mary! Department of Natural Resou: This sanctuary includes ponds, s. swamps, food plants and grass ploos designed to attract g ducts and other migrating wate:

la May 1990 Jones suddenly ed guilty to one misdemeanor r. to negligent filling of wetlands, ing to pay $1 million to the Na Fish & Wildlife Foundation the Blackwater Refugs, plus a lion finc. The plea allowed Jo waid a costy and debilitatir. and posibly even a jail term lows of his trading license. H no ac deal was afforded B.

: himsel a well-known conser who, with his wife, runs a re hab mission for injured wil waterfowl.

How could Ellen be prose covering land that was so praying had to be used suppresent during bulldo large nesting ponds for That question disturbed Frederic Smalkin at the U Courtin Baltimore, and th got was bizarre. Prosecution witness Rhodes, one of the EPA'st on wedands, said that e the forested "wedands replaced by new ponds, was supposedly worse of

Why? The problem “The sanctuary pond is have a large concentrat fowl, and before the re

108

SOWA to the bureaucracy store to change my perceptions of government and its role forever and on s compelling way that I can no longer be satisfied by a day I have lived unicas I have driven another into the coffin of our country's bureaucracies.

I have purposefully taken the name which environmentalists believe best describes only those rested in so called "westem“ issues. because I wish to demonstrate that "Wise Use" as nor a western

epl. but one which should apply nationwide. The question of whether we should engage in a particy ustainable use or abject protectionism is at issue whether the specific manifestation is found in a debate -- logging in the Pacific Northwest or David Lucas' plans to build two houses on a beach in South hina.

Despite cominents 10 the contrary made by my opponents in the environmental community. I do krceive environmentalism or environmentalists as a conspiracy "Wise Use". above all else. resents change from the current status quo and it will be attacked, nor by a conspiracy, but by the ural tendency of society to resist change. Elements in society do not need 10 band 10gether 10

10 Festst ange. It is not conspiratonal coincidence, but uncreative copycatisen that spreads a simmar vernacular mongst the opponents of "Wise Use”. Of course they may capitalize on weaknesses inflicted by one rother. Just as vultures want to feed on others' kills. But vultures are not conspirators, they are pportunists.

On the other hand environmentalists are quick to the draw alleging that “Wise Use" is a conspiracy legations that I am in some satanic alliance with Chuck Cushman for instance sound a br paraning to

My knowledge and acquaintance with such national figures has actually been fosicred by the SRVipsanmental communities continued complete rejection of my own point of view and their sputamus allegations that it isn't my point of view. but that I serve as a mouthpiece for others. I realized early un that I would be lumped in the same group with anyone environmentahst did not like so I determined to mas many of them as possible and understand their poim of view I have respect for the advertcy of Check Cushman. I have discussed the issues of "Wise Use" with Ron Arnold pastupa als must remoniasd mentor ironically. I have found these gentlemen because it was assened that I must be in brague with them due to the nature of my shelonic. I senainly have a working relationship with soir of the mannelly renown grassroots leaders in the figte for propery rights, but I don't come to you as their agrokemongo free * a simple Rhode islander who has walked over the coats of sepulation, cAvocal deməying wul stered cow legislation to bring you my own ASSESSMEN of the shown

I append do thuis testimony, as weli as the aucle on my owo sowy mod we 11 volt gonne seter Rhode Islanders who are poster chuidice of our sur un ache has within alde labowong whole lot of a long Our movement in Rhodke Isiand question wlasche I deuve developed animal se or y mi apable o yare layo Whore kugh you presume that I speak Ibave si in a sign oy so vayl you are yat, musi proved suppo network for individuals te die stake for my son scrutiny of the 2 detracies described it. Wowwywy luder I bou en grows is all set you go youtora

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

۱۱:۱۱ ارد في الماء لديره ابدا ما در اراده و گا، اب f my enterty nai k

, او ا رداد راه ار، اهاز، فردايده يا عباده را ، نوا ، و ا ا اردو او a nuity

Tesimony of Brian Bishop

*** Wag wat

[graphic]
« iepriekšējāTurpināt »