Friends of the Desert #12

Friends of the Desert
E-News Issue #12
March 29, 2002
*A project of the Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection*
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*URGENT! — Ask your Representatives to Oppose HB2638
*CSDP Recreation Forum and Road Design Forum successes!
*Next Steering Committee meeting Saturday April 6
*County SDCP Open House Series
*Thank you party for Raul Grijalva

Please call your representatives in the state legislature TODAY and
ask them to oppose HB2638. This bill is now clearly aimed at
undercutting Pima County’s Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan and other
conservation efforts around the state. The bill was amended to say
that if any county adopts a conservation regulation that causes a
reduction in use or value of property of ten percent or more then that
is considered a taking and the property owner is entitled to
compensation. If HB2638 passes, it will result in a lot more
litigation and will be costly to counties (county taxpayers) that are
trying to plan and zone for conservation and protect the quality of
life in their communities. It is also probably unconstitutional, and
needs to be killed. You can call your legislator’s office toll free
at 1-800-352-8404. IF you are unsure about who your representatives
are, please call the Coalition office at 520-388-9925, or visit

On January 19th, the Coalition held a forum on "Recreation and the
Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan." It was a success — about 50
people attended and heard presentations on impacts of recreation to
natural resources, economic benefits of recreation, and the mission
and tasks of the county’s new "Recreation Technical Advisory Team."
The Coalition and attendees helped the county on their recreational
mapping project in an effort to better plan for our recreation future
that best protects our wildlife and other natural resources.
Recreational users that attended provided the county with much-needed
information about what uses are occurring where. If you would like to
help with this effort, please call Carolyn Campbell at the Coalition
office, 520-388-9925. A representative from the Coalition or Pima
County can attend a meeting of your organization or recreational group
so that you too can assist in the mapping effort.

On March 19th, the Coalition hosted a forum on "Road Design and the
Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan." Cosponsored by the University of
Arizona Environmental Law Society, the forum was a huge success. In
addition to the general public, the Coalition specifically invited
road planners and engineers, landscape architects, and biologists to
begin working together on how to build roads that work better for
wildlife. Presentations included road effects on ecosystems, a recent
National Park study on road effects on natural resources and
monitoring efforts, Pima County’s "Environmentally Sensitive Road
Design" report, and successfully-implemented mitigation measures.
Close to 100 people attended, and the discussion was a lively one!

The Coalition will be publishing proceedings from both of these forums
–we will let you know when they are available!

The next Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan Steering Committee meeting
will be held Saturday, April 6, from 8:30am to 11:30am at the Tucson
Estates multi-purpose room, 5900 W. Western Way Circle, Tucson 85713.
As always, the public is welcome and encouraged to attend =96 we hope
to see you there!

Pima County has been holding a series of Open Houses on the Sonoran
Desert Conservation Plan to provide the public a chance to learn more
about the SDCP and its various elements. If you did not attend the
first two held on February 25 and March 25, you still have time to
attend any or all of the remaining three. The Open Houses are held at
the County Public Works Basement, from 8AM to 8PM. The dates for the
remaining three Open Houses are Monday, April 29; Tuesday, May 2; and
Monday, June 24.

Please join the Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection in honoring
former Pima County Supervisor Raul Grijalva for his many years of
exemplary service in the area of conservation and environmental
issues. The reception will be held Wednesday, April 24, 2002 from
5:30pm to 8pm at the Tucson Botanical Gardens in the Porter Hall and
Reception Garden (2150 North Alvernon Way, Tucson 85712). There will
be finger foods and a cash bar, and donations will be requested at the
door. All proceeds will benefit the Coalition for Sonoran Desert
Protection. Please call 520-388-9925 for more information.

***If you enjoy this newsletter and would like to support our work,
please send contributions to the Coalition for Sonoran Desert
Protection, 300 E. University Blvd., Ste. 120, Tucson, AZ 85705.
Thank You!***