The Rexburg Standard Journal’s Heather Randall gave voice to proponents of an Idaho Yellowstone Caldera Monument in her third and final article of a series Saturday.
Randall’s two voices are Steve Woodruff of the National Wildlife Federation in Missoula, Mont. and Jim Caswell, the former Targhee National Forest Supervisor and Bureau of Land Management director.
Randall quoted Woodruff saying his group got behind the effort after reading stories in the Idaho Statesman about the idea first proposed by Boise reader Kathy Steinbach in 2007. Caswell, who studied the recommendations made by Idaho Statesman readers as BLM director under Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, said he supports a monument but only with a process that maintains local control.
Fremont County will vote on the proposal in November but only a yes vote will make any waves since it would be so remarkable. Rural Idahoans don’t trust the Antiquities Act process and they certainly don’t trust President Obama.
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But as Woodruff points out, while he wants to work with locals on a plan like Caswell proposes, he and other environmental and preservation groups aren’t going to give up pressing this and future administrations. Idaho’s Yellowstone is a special place of worldwide significance.