The Sumter National Forest announced today that the final decision on recreation uses on the upper Wild and Scenic Chattooga River is under internal review and will not be released this month as planned.
“Our timeline has slipped for several reasons,” said Jerome Thomas, forest supervisor for the Francis Marion and Sumter National Forests. “First, at the request of our constituents, we extended the public comment period on the pre-decisional Environmental Analysis (EA). We also received more than 3,000 individual emails and letters which had to be analyzed. We’re working hard to complete our work, but we won’t be releasing our final decision until next year.”
The Sumter National Forest's ban on paddling was determined to be in violation of the Wilderness Act and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act by the highest office of the US Forest Service in April of 2005. The process for resolving the inconsistent and illegal management of the Chattooga has been plagued by delays at every turn, and the mismanagement continues. American Whitewater has sought protective and nationally consistent management on the Wild and Scenic upper Chattooga River since 1995.
Forest Service Delays Chattooga Analysis
November 8, 2007
More Chattooga Delays - Another Season Lost
December 20, 2007
Surprise: More Chattooga Delays
March 7, 2008
USFS Announces More Chattooga Delays (Again)
June 26, 2008
USFS Chattooga River Proposal Released
July 2, 2008
Forest Service Extends Chattooga Comment Period
July 30, 2008
Chattooga Comments In, Questions Remain
August 19, 2008
Yet Another Chattooga Delay, Again...
December 19, 2008