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Agencies not close to managing lands to the will of the Congress

Letter to the Editor

Article 1. Section 8. Clause 17 of the Constitution for the United States does not allow for the federal government to claim title to, or to legislate over lands contained inside the boundaries of states, except as enumerated thereby. The Post Office in Grangeville is located on six tenths of one acre and is the only land in Idaho County where the federal government has exclusive legislative jurisdiction.

Article 4. Section 3. Clause 2 of the same constitution enumerates the power of the Congress of the United States to dispose of and make all needful rules and regulations respecting the territory or other property belonging to the United States… Because Idaho is a state and not a territory there remains no need to dispose of properties within our boundaries. The power of the Congress in this respect is to dispose of territorial or other properties first and foremost. Properties are limited to all places purchased by the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards and other needful buildings… How is it that we now assume that the federal government and specifically the executive branch has any jurisdiction for managing lands in Idaho? The U.S Constitution and the laws made pursuant thereof… shall be the supreme law of the land. Why then do we accept the anarchy and despotism of federal land managers? Does anyone presume to know the answers?

If we were to assume that the Congress possesses the jurisdictional authority to create forest reservations as it has in the 1897 Organic Act, why don’t we follow the law? This statute lays out the express purpose for the creation of the national forests. The agencies don’t come close to managing the lands with any purpose that remotely resembles the will of the Congress!

Have you noticed that the environmental laws pertain to what the federal government and corporations may do and doesn’t pertain to individuals?

The courts have changed the meaning of the statutes and the environmental community has been rewarded for suing the United States.

Don Smith



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