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Thread: National Park Proposal East of Baxter Heating up

  1. #16
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    The name Elliotsville Plantation seems to have fallen out of use and is now Katahdin Woods and Waters (although I see E.P.I in some spots on the website)

    http://katahdinwoods.org/visit/

    They have good directions on the website and I expect if you contact them, you will get a lot of attention.

    The Sherman exit is the next exit north of Medway (the usual turnoff for 99% of the BSP folks). Make sure you stop and visit the view of Baxter on I95 Northbound as I don't think there is pull off on the southbound lane.

    The contrast is quite significant between the Medway/Millinocket area and the Sherman/Patten area as the S/P area has quite a bit of farmland, you are on the south end of the Maine potato industry. Just be aware that there are very few tourist services beyond an Irving gas station (with a diner) at the Sherman exit, so if you need groceries a stop in East Millinocket may be in order. Unless the entrance to the proposed NWNP is moved, I expect the Sherman area will be the spot the majority of tourists will visit.

  2. #17
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    There is now a push to have this area declared a National Monument which only requires Presidential approval and bypasses local and congressional objections. The land owner has a big check book and has hired lobbyists.

    http://www.pressherald.com/2015/11/2...s-shift-focus/

  3. #18
    Senior Member Brambor's Avatar
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    good.

    in fact it would be best to declare the entire north woods (encompasing Greenville, Rockwood and Allagash etc...) as a national monument.

    let's get it done. The local interests demonstrated in the past 20 - 30 years a complete ineptitude of protecting the land and providing quality of life and education to the residents.
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  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brambor View Post
    good.

    in fact it would be best to declare the entire north woods (encompasing Greenville, Rockwood and Allagash etc...) as a national monument.

    let's get it done. The local interests demonstrated in the past 20 - 30 years a complete ineptitude of protecting the land and providing quality of life and education to the residents.
    Are you talking about the paper companies that allowed access to their property by the public? Or are ypu talking about Roxanne Quimby who closed all the roads to the property and closed off all access? There was a lot of tourism dollars lost to her actions.

  5. #20
    Senior Member Guthook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by egilbe View Post
    ... who closed all the roads to the property and closed off all access?
    "Closed off all access" is inaccurate. I think you mean access by vehicle.

    Either way, I've never heard any report of negative economic impacts so far from Quimby closing that piece of land to logging, atv, and vehicle access.
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  6. #21
    Senior Member Brambor's Avatar
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    I don't know how you could infer that I was talking about any of the two things you laid out but I'm not even gonna play that game

    Quote Originally Posted by egilbe View Post
    Are you talking about the paper companies that allowed access to their property by the public? Or are ypu talking about Roxanne Quimby who closed all the roads to the property and closed off all access? There was a lot of tourism dollars lost to her actions.
    Luck is where preparation meets opportunity.

  7. #22
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    The subtleties between a national monument and a park are fairly significant. A national monument appears to be the US government converting government land into a different management status. I expect the process is that EP offers the land to the government and then the president makes a conditional acceptance of the offered land as a national monument. Along with the land donation is an endowment fund with what I expect are significant restrictions on how those funds can be spent thus EP retains some control over the land without actually owning it. I do not believe that a monument has a declaration boundary like a National Park (and National forest) does. The declaration boundary's similar to the blue line in the ADKs, lays out an area of land where the government may or may not own all the land but gains some means of control of non owned land. This is a significant difference as the other private inholders of this area gain an involuntary partner, I.E. the NPS whose ultimate goal is the acquire all the inholdings and if EPs stated goal is implemented is to restore the area to wilderness state. The inholders also involuntarily gain a host of regulatory oversight that was not present before. The concept of willing buyer/willing seller is brought up on occasion as an argument by advocates of a federal declaration but the reality is that the inholders property and his/her ability to earn income is impacted by the change in regulatory stature. This is generally a sticky legal concept of "involuntary taking" where a government entity without purchasing a property takes all or a portion of a properties value by regulatory means. This inevitably ends up in court and rarely does an owner win as the government effectively has infinite legal resources while the owner does not. In the case of the proposed Maine Woods National Park, a large portion of the land in the proposed declaration boundary is not owned by EP. As the road network and infrastructure to access the inholdings will be effectively owned and controlled by the NPS, decisions on NPS managed land can and traditionally do impact the inholders. This has happened in the past on EP owned lands where key access points were gated that had been previously used by the public and area landholders and reportedly has happened in the past in the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge to the east.

    The trump card of a National Park declaration is that the NP stamp inherently bestows a cachet that will lead to large throngs of money wielding tourists. There are frequent comparisons with Acadia but the reality is that Acadia is special due to the proximity to the coast of very impressive topography, diverse habitats along with the extensive carriage road and other man made improvements. Tourists have always been attracted to the Maine coast and there was a long term tradition of summer colonies along the coasts long before Acadia. In comparison the EP properties are effectively former industrial working forests similar to millions of acres in the region. With the exception of the East Branch there are no particular areas of scenic beauty beyond vistas into BSP to the west. Although there may be an initial inrush of guests I expect that it will probably earn the moniker the Black Fly National Park in a few years as people figure out that if they want a far better experience, they just make reservations next door in BSP where the real area of national interest resides or go farther west and visit the AMC 100 mile wilderness complex which is managed in a similar manner to the proposed MWNP.
    Last edited by peakbagger; 12-02-2015 at 07:45 AM.

  8. #23
    Senior Member Brambor's Avatar
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    I agree that the main deficiency so far has been the presentation of the outdoor opportunities within this newly proposed land.




    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    The subtleties between a national monument and a park are fairly significant. A national monument appears to be the US government converting government land into a different management status. I expect the process is that EP offers the land to the government and then the president makes a conditional acceptance of the offered land as a national monument. Along with the land donation is an endowment fund with what I expect are significant restrictions on how those funds can be spent thus EP retains some control over the land without actually owning it. I do not believe that a monument has a declaration boundary like a National Park (and National forest) does. The declaration boundary's similar to the blue line in the ADKs, lays out an area of land where the government may or may not own all the land but gains some means of control of non owned land. This is a significant difference as the other private inholders of this area gain an involuntary partner, I.E. the NPS whose ultimate goal is the acquire all the inholdings and if EPs stated goal is implemented is to restore the area to wilderness state. The inholders also involuntarily gain a host of regulatory oversight that was not present before. The concept of willing buyer/willing seller is brought up on occasion as an argument by advocates of a federal declaration but the reality is that the inholders property and his/her ability to earn income is impacted by the change in regulatory stature. This is generally a sticky legal concept of "involuntary taking" where a government entity without purchasing a property takes all or a portion of a properties value by regulatory means. This inevitably ends up in court and rarely does an owner win as the government effectively has infinite legal resources while the owner does not. In the case of the proposed Maine Woods National Park, a large portion of the land in the proposed declaration boundary is not owned by EP. As the road network and infrastructure to access the inholdings will be effectively owned and controlled by the NPS, decisions on NPS managed land can and traditionally do impact the inholders. This has happened in the past on EP owned lands where key access points were gated that had been previously used by the public and area landholders and reportedly has happened in the past in the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge to the east.

    The trump card of a National Park declaration is that the NP stamp inherently bestows a cachet that will lead to large throngs of money wielding tourists. There are frequent comparisons with Acadia but the reality is that Acadia is special due to the proximity to the coast of very impressive topography, diverse habitats along with the extensive carriage road and other man made improvements. Tourists have always been attracted to the Maine coast and there was a long term tradition of summer colonies along the coasts long before Acadia. In comparison the EP properties are effectively former industrial working forests similar to millions of acres in the region. With the exception of the East Branch there are no particular areas of scenic beauty beyond vistas into BSP to the west. Although there may be an initial inrush of guests I expect that it will probably earn the moniker the Black Fly National Park in a few years as people figure out that if they want a far better experience, they just make reservations next door in BSP where the real area of national interest resides or go farther west and visit the AMC 100 mile wilderness complex which is managed in a similar manner to the proposed MWNP.
    Luck is where preparation meets opportunity.

  9. #24
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brambor View Post
    I agree that the main deficiency so far has been the presentation of the outdoor opportunities within this newly proposed land.
    And aside from the recreational opportunities denied on the Quimby lands, what opportunities would a National Monument create that don't already exist in Baxter State Park and in the North Maine Woods?

  10. #25
    Senior Member Brambor's Avatar
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    are you kidding? The whole region is a goldmine for opportunities (known and undiscovered) that would be either preserved or enhanced and done so with the umbrella of further preservation and uniform quality of wildlife management.

    I wish someone from the group hired me for a couple of years. I could go to town with this :-) .
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  11. #26
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    I'm wondering if the National Monument move is related to the fact that the president can declare any federal land a national monument (except in AK and WY). Congress needs to be involved to make a NP.

  12. #27
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    I'm wondering if the National Monument move is related to the fact that the president can declare any federal land a national monument (except in AK and WY). Congress needs to be involved to make a NP.

    Yup that is the stated reason. The congressional delegation for Maine had stated they will withhold support until there is local support which there hasn't been. Even the EP folks gave lip service to local support and has obviously run paid PR efforts to try to drum up local support. Apparently they also have actively been paying lobbyists to work on a backup plan for the monument designation. Politically this is a nice legacy for a lame duck president, nice photo op.

    Several national preservationists have come out in general about ignoring local support on projects like these, they generally argue the locals are too short sited and in generally uneducated to understand the bigger picture. (thus obviously doesn't sell well with the locals) Do note the original intent of this park was never as tourist attraction it rather was a small portion of larger landscape vision of a wilderness preserve that was espoused in the original Maine Woods National Park proposal http://www.mainewoodsnationalpark.com/the-park.html. The original intent was exclusionist preservation, shut down the roads, limit access and let it go back to nature, this didn't sell and R Quimby was too closely associated with the original concept so the latest attempt is PR effort to convert it into a economic engine to try to gain acceptance.

  13. #28
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    "The original intent was exclusionist preservation, shut down the roads, limit access and let it go back to nature,"

    So, kind of like the NFS treatment of the Pemi Wilderness? I can't see that plan as providing much of an economic draw. Given the response to the current NFS Pemi direction, I don't see it being popular even among outdoor users.
    It's a lot like fun, but different.

  14. #29
    Senior Member roadtripper's Avatar
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    National Monument is the way to go.

    I'm actually hoping Obama designates 10 more monuments before he leaves office (like what Bill Clinton did)
    Last edited by roadtripper; 12-02-2015 at 01:13 PM.

  15. #30
    Senior Member Guthook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by peakbagger View Post
    R Quimby was too closely associated with the original concept...
    Peakbagger, are you saying you think the current plan is just a foot in the door in order to achieve the older park proposal? That is what much of the current anti-park side focuses on, despite consistent denial of that by EP.
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