Sublette County Commissioner asks Senator Enzi to look into Forest Service management of Rainbow Gathering in Wyoming
by Pinedale Online!
June 23, 2008
Sublette County Commissioner Joel Bousman has asked Senator Mike Enzi to look into the Forest Service’s handling of the Rainbow gathering in Wyoming. The Rainbows are holding their annual national gathering in the Dutch Joe-Big Sandy area of the southern Wind River Mountain Range, approximately 60 miles southeast of Pinedale. Bousman says there has been poor communication and coordination between all local, state and federal law enforcement agencies responsible for planning for the safety and security of citizens and the Rainbows. The Rainbows main gathering will be July 1-7th.
Below is the e-mail letter he sent to Lyn Shanaghy, Field Representative for Senator Enzi. A copy of the e-mail was also sent to the Pinedale Ranger District/Bridger-Teton National Forest, Wyoming Game & Fish Department, Sublette County Sheriff’s Office and local Pinedale media.
From: Joel Bousman
Sent: Monday, June 23, 2008 7:37 AM
Subject: Undersecretary Rey and the rainbows
Lyn: Just a follow up to our trading of phone messages last Friday. At that time I was hoping that Mark Rey could be encouraged to take a more firm position in regards to moving the rainbows to a location that would not be in conflict with the previously legally permitted camp site to be used by the boy scouts. That is no longer an option as many more have moved in on the Big Sandy site and as of yesterday, the rainbows say moving is definitely not an option.
My concern centers around the fact that Mr. Rey for whatever reason decided to perform what he is referring to in the Casper Star as an "experimental process" in allowing to rainbows to go where they want with little or no advance notice. This resulted in poor communication and coordination between all local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies responsible for planning for the safety and security not only of the citizens of our county, but the rainbows as well. With no permit required, there was no specific Forest Service District office that needed contacted in order to look at camp siting locations, set a time line for choosing a site, and then coordinating everything that must happen to allow for protection of the resource, and to provide for the law enforcement measures that need to be in place.
With proper planning, the rainbows could have been notified early in the process of their choosing a site that this site on Big Sandy is unavailiable because it is already permitted during a time that will conflict. It is hypocritical to allow a legally permitted action to be displaced by an "experimental process".
This kind of action leads to anarchy, and hypocrisy in government at this level is unacceptable. I feel it is incumbent on us as elected officials from county commissioners to our US Senators to remind our appointed people that this is not appropriate.
I request that Senator Enzi review this situation for himself and consider contacting the Secretary of Agriculture or whomever else he deems appropriate at a higher level and express concern. We must try and ensure this kind of situation does not recurr in the future. Lyn, please pass this on to Senator Enzi for his consideration.
Thanks Lyn and hope all is going well.
Sublette County Commissioner