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Hi Desert Warrior

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Posts: 209
 #1 
I found a very important ally for our cause to save Saline Valley Warm Springs.
They are called- Public Lands for the People,   plp1.org.  Check them out, they have the legal power and have won many cases with BLM.  They are slanted toward mining interest, but also support recreation on public and private lands. 
Sam D.

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 #2 
No clue - I just saw the announcement on the NPS site when I was wasting time browsing. I can only speculate that she moved closer to her husband "who was recently selected to be the Southeast Region's chief of facility support for the National Park Service Southeast Regional Office in Atlanta". It's only 6 hr drive or 1 hr flight.
Hi Desert Warrior

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 #3 
Sam D- This is big news to me.  What caused her departure?  Who is her replacement?  This change in command could have a major impact on the out come, one way or another, of the warm springs.   
Sam D.

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 #4 
Just curious how Sarah's departure will affect NPS policy on SVHS?

http://home.nps.gov/applications/digest/headline.cfm?type=PeopleNews&id=3643
RanchRat
 #5 
Yeah...golfers are flocking to pay the greens fees...free local golf is no longer offered so much is being made!!! 

Another correction, the Airport is administered by the NPS, I fly in occasionally, there is no tie-down fee other than the nomal park entrance but I have a pass.  I understand that Cheveron (Xanterra) stopped seling av-gas because they (Xanterra) didn't want to meet OSHA/NFPA/FAA regs.  Originally the Runway was between the Ranch and Inn where, Sunset Campground is now, but a/c had to taxi accross the highway to fuel and park.  (FYI that happened in the 50's, when the DOI was trying to abolish aerodromes in Parks...Death valley fought to keep one as a flying Doctor was the only medical service to the residents and visitors)
matmiss

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 #6 
They all are indeed private, stemming back from when it was the Greenland Ranch raising feed for the mules- the Ranch, airport, cabins, the whole bits.  Fred Harvey used to have the concession and properties, and now Xanterra.  Only fairly recently did the mining company(was US Borax, now Rio Tinto) donated the land under the Visitor Center to NPS - that too was private when the VC was built!  
Hi Desert Warrior

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 #7 
Thanks RanchRat.  You may be right about the date grove but I don't think NPS would shut down the golf course as that has a good dollar income, same for tie down fees at the airstrip.
RanchRat
 #8 

In the intrest of acuracy; the Furnace Creek Resort properties are now in fact owned by Xantera Parks & Resorts.  They were purchased from the Fred Harvey company some years ago.  True they manage concessions in other National Parks but own their properties in Death Valley.  I would imagine if they were NPS properties the dates and Golf Course would go...

Hope this information is helpful...

Sam D.

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 #9 
I found interesting report on the NPS 10 year budget history:

http://home.nps.gov/applications/budget2/documents/NPS_10-YearBudgetHistory.pdf

It's true that U.S. Park Police operations were funded in a separate appropriation from FY 2001 to FY 2007.

Nevertheless, the overall 2011 and 2012 budget is more than that of the year 2008 when the Park Police budget was merged into overall budget. What cuts is NPS talking about? I bet most of the extra $$$ went into their fat pension plans so they can retire at 55 and receive 90% of pay for the rest of their lives with full medical, dental, life for the entire family while the rest of us peasants eat canned beans and drink plain wrap beer for breakfast.

I also find it interesting that many links on that website do not work seemingly trying to hide details of the budget and a bunch of links point to 6-9 year old information.

Also interesting that the number of visitors have declined from 2002 to 2004
http://www.us-parks.com/death-valley-national-park/facts.html

There are no stats for later years.


Hi Desert Warrior

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Posts: 209
 #10 
RanchRat- True, I don't think Furnace Creek Inn, Ranch, Golf Course, Date Grove, and Cabins, General Store, Restaurants, are now private properties.  My son worked there 12 years ago and a private corporation had a contract with the Park Service to manage the facilities and provide personnel.  The same company also managed Yosemite, Yellowstone, and the Grand Canyon.  My question is; if the Park Service acquiried those facilities and looked the other way or gave a wavier in respect to an environmental impact, then why 18 years later, is the Park Service doing a environmental impact now.  I feel the underling reason is saline warm springs has become a major headache.  Like BLM's attitude, if its a problem then elimate it, then no problem.  
RanchRat
 #11 

HDW-
Y'all realize that the Furnace Creek Inn, Ranch, Golf Course, and Date Grove is private properties?  Ben that way 4 a long time, like since they we bilt...b4 the park services.  I think Sotties was a private home tat was sold to the parks???
Sam D.

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 #12 
To Hi Desert Warrior, yes both springs are CO. Little is more CO than Big Caliente. Big Caliente -OK to do it if all are CO or nobody's there. I've never seen anyone dressed at Little C. except during hunting season. During hunting season, droves of hunters stop by to soak and the surrounding area sounds like a war zone. I no longer go there during hunting season.
paul belanger

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 #13 
Insightful information, Warrior.  I was trying to find a way to make the pumping of the vaults easier for the NPS, offering ideas, etc., and got totally flamed for it on another thread here, called "scum".

I believe if we could help with the problem of the vault toilets, we might have some ammo (to use a word these people can understand) for our argument that the springs should remain as they are.
Hi Desert Warrior

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Posts: 209
 #14 
Sam D- Thanks for the info, is the hot springs clothing optional?
I checked out the link you provided.  I think the access road is going to be closed for many, many years to come.  If the endangered frogs have expanded growth and populating areas where it hasn't been before.  Then they will continue to expand and not decrease.  I believe the problem with the Forest Service is budget cuts and reduction in Rangers to enforce the campsites at the expense of visitor and campers enjoyment.  Since Saline Hot Springs has no endangered species, the environmental impact would be the next best thing to close the springs to the public.  This impact would include Palm Trees, grass, burros, and visitors, to name a few.  The Ranger I talked to at the Bishop meeting complained about going to Saline springs.  For them, its a five hour each way trip that no one likes to do, even with overtime.  My question was how does the NPS justify Scotty's Castle, Furnace Creek Inn, the golf course, the Date Palm grove, just to name a few with regards to an environmental impact and received a, "I don't know".  The other major problem the NPS has, is trying to get a company to empty the vaults at a reasonable cost.  I was told that NPS has to provide overnight  accommodations in Big Pine to the contract company.  NPS hired a company and after the first time the company went to the springs, they cancelled their contract with NPS.  So you can see why the springs are a major headache to NPS.  Why now after 18 years of NPS control?  Using an environmental impact to close the springs down would reduce a big headache to a little headache.  I wish I am very wrong with this idea, but this is what I think.   
Sam D.

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 #15 
They are in Los Padres National Forest in the mountains above Santa Barbara.
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