Alaska Brief Newsletter–October 2017
October brought good news
I love the fall season.
The smell of change cuts through the Alaska chill and reminds me that we really live on Mother Nature’s cycles. We may feel overwhelmed by day-to-day work and chores at home, but each transition in turn nourishes us. We are in the time of harvest and preparation for rest and rejuvenation.
I particularly love this fall season. October brought good news. Though we face an array of assaults on public lands, waterways, wildlife, and communities right now, we continue to do the legal work that keeps the threats at bay and decision makers accountable.
Wins in court for fish, water, public lands
Early this month we got great news when the Ninth Circuit upheld the National Park Service’s ability to manage boating activities on navigable rivers within park boundaries. The ruling means that NPS can prohibit activities that can damage habitat and wildlife, or diminish other people’s experience on those public lands.
Less than a week later, the Alaska Superior Court ruled in our favor, agreeing that Alaskans have a constitutional right to the initiative process and that regulation of the public resources is a proper topic for the public to legislate. The judge’s decision means that Alaskans can start collecting the signatures needed for putting an initiative on the ballot that updates and strengthens fish habitat permitting.
New board members and supporters
These two cases will likely end up back in court on appeal, but our work moved us forward. We know the law and we fight to uphold it. We know the Constitution and the voice it gives to citizens.
This month we also welcomed three new board members to our team, each with a singular passion, knowledge, experience and commitment to Alaska’s stewardship. I look forward to working with them and the rest of the Board to make Trustees even stronger.
Finally, we took this month of changing colors and temperatures to hold our first reading event at a local business, Cynosure Brewing. Dozens of people came to hear Marybeth Holleman and Nancy Lord share words that convey the richness of story in the human relationship to nature.
To the cycles that connect us!
PS: Your support of Trustees for Alaska is critical now more than ever.
Court ruling means Alaskans can move forward with a proposed ballot measure to update and strengthen protections for salmon habitat.
Court decision aligns with centuries of law and allows federal agencies to regulate navigable waters in conservation system units like national parks, refuges, and monuments.
This second generation Alaskan grew up in Juneau. Her Alaska roots inspired her career as an advocate–and now a new board member with Trustees.