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We reflect and update as HIV/AIDS first came to national attention 40 years ago this month; and when it comes to infrastructure spending, bipartisanship isn't dead yet.


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President Biden offers up more COVID-19 vaccines to the world; Dems and GOP close in on an infrastructure deal; and Speaker Pelosi tries to quell a spat over the Middle East among Democrats.

Idaho’s Roadless Plan Reaches the End of the Road

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 By Deborah Smith/Elizabeth Grattan, Contact
October 17, 2008

Boise, ID - The "roadless rule" for National Forests in Idaho has reached the end of the road. The rule has been published in the Federal Register, thereby finalizing the guidelines for how more than nine million acres of backcountry will look in the years to come. Most of the land will remain the same, and a small portion could be open to mining and logging.

Jonathan Oppenheimer, a senior conservation associate for the Idaho Conservation League, says the initial proposal would have opened millions of acres to development, but Idahoans were loud in raising concerns about seeing bulldozers in their favorite forest getaways.

"These are our favorite hunting and fishing grounds, and clean water, and places that we use to get away from it all. The Bush administration and the State of Idaho heard those concerns."

Oppenheimer believes people on all sides of the issue will be watching closely to make sure the rule stays balanced.

"Making sure that this is implemented correctly, that we're seeing projects that will actually benefit Idahoans and provide some amount of protections for communities."

The final rule was published in the Federal Register Thursday. Not all conservation groups agreed with the final rule. Some think it opens up too much land to the possibilities of mining, logging, and road-building. Still others have criticized the rule for not opening up enough forest to be used as "working land."

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