#30: RS 2477 RULE
|In 1864, Congress passed a
law mandating that roads to mines on federal lands were to remain open
to provide access for further mineral development. This law
resulted in the regulation known as RS 2477.
|The 1976 Federal Lands
Policy and Management Act included a section defining these roads as
those that were "constructed and maintained." However, certain
anti-federal lands, anti-wilderness interests in western states,
particularly in Utah and Alaska, began to use RS 2477 as authority to
declare any track as a road. Many counties mapped a myriad of
thousands of routes as roads, and some actually bull-dozed routes in
areas classified as roadless by the Forest Service and as Wilderness
Study Areas by the Bureau of Land Management.
|Recently, a federal judge
from Utah ruled that RS 2477 did not allow construction of new roads
across federal lands.
|The Federation of Western
Outdoor Clubs strongly supports the decision in this Utah court case on
RS 2477 and the finding that a road must be constructed and maintained
in order to qualify as a legitimate road.
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