Unlike protection for the Rocky Mountain Front and the dubious Nevada Lands Bill, the Central Idaho Economic Development and Recreation Act, or CIEDRA, which would protect parts of Idaho’s White Cloud and Boulder Mountains as Wilderness, and make side payments to anti-wilderness interests, failed. It was not attached to “Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006” as so much else was.
Rocky Barker tells the story of the last minute efforts to move the legislation “Simpson work on wilderness all for naught.” Idaho Statesman.
The article says Idaho’s Representative Simpson might try to attach it to the fiscal year 2007 budget bill that the out-going Congress failed to pass, but Democrats just anounced they will not take up the Republican budget, which will be 5 months late in January. They will fund the government with a continuing resolution for the entire year.
The last time Congress passed a budget on time (Oct. 1, the beginning of the federal fiscal year) was in 1994, when the Democratic Congress sent the budget bills to President Clinton before Oct. 1.
Simpson says he will reintroduce CIEDRA. Conservationists believe that the bill will have to be more public lands friendly if it is to pass a Democratic Congress.
Added Dec. 13. from the Idaho Mountain Express. “CIEDRA killed by 109th Congress. Legislation will be resurrected next month. By Steve Benson.