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Posted by: John_Hamilton on 02/27/2013 05:15 PM Updated by: John_Hamilton on 02/27/2013 05:22 PM
Expires: 01/01/2018 12:00 AM
:



Open Letter from Forest Service on Candy Rock Quarry

Hathaway Pines, CA...Dear Concerned Citizen: I have received several comments and questions over the past month regarding enforcement and management issues related to target shooting in the Candy Rock area and the status of our Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Candy Rock Quarry. This letter is to answer these questions and clarify some points regarding National Forest management in the Candy Rock area....



Target shooting is a legal activity on the Stanislaus National Forest unless an area is
specifically closed to that activity by Forest Order. The Stanislaus National Forest Land
Management Plan allows target shooting in the Candy Rock area as long as individuals
are abiding by all the applicable State and Federal laws and Forest Orders.

Candy Rock Quarry has been used for target shooting since the 1960s. The quarry is not
considered to be a designated shooting range as it is available for multiple uses. If at any
time the quarry is occupied by people involved in other activities, it cannot be used for
target shooting. There are no designated shooting ranges on the Stanislaus National
Forest.

On April 29, 2011 the Forest Supervisor put a temporary Forest Order in place that
restricts the hours that people can shoot at Candy Rock quarry. That Forest Order expires
April 28, 2013. We intend to extend the order until a decision is reached through the EIS
regarding whether or not shooting will continue to be allowed at Candy Rock Quarry.

Forest Road 4N73Y (Candy Rock Quarry Rd.) is currently closed to motorized vehicle
use per the 2009 Motorized Travel Management Record of Decision and will reopen
April 16, weather permitting. Target shooting is still allowed at Candy Rock Quarry
while the road is closed to motorized use, but users have to walk or bicycle up to the
quarry. Restrictions on hours for target shooting at and around the quarry still apply.

The Forest Supervisor cannot permanently close an area or otherwise restrict a recreation
activity, such as target shooting, without first completing an environmental analysis
under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). We are in the midst of
completing such an analysis. Our NEPA process has taken an extended amount of time
to conduct due to the loss of key staff, and due to our underestimation of the complexity
of the analysis. We plan to have the draft EIS available for public review in September
2013.

We will use forest wide law enforcement resources to continue to enforce Federal laws
and Forest Orders in the Candy Rock area. Individuals can report incidences of illegal
activities on the National Forest to our dispatch office (209)532-3786. When illegal use
is reported we will investigate the situation as our resources are available.

Forest Service law enforcement officers can enforce Federal laws and Forest Orders in
Calaveras County. Forest Service law enforcement officers cannot enforce State laws in
Calaveras County. Currently, Calaveras County Sheriff’s officers cannot enforce Forest
Orders. Forest Service law enforcement officers frequently work with County Sheriff’s
officers on enforcement in the National Forest.

We have received reports of target shooting taking place at multiple locations outside of
Candy Rock Quarry, particularly since the seasonal closure of Forest Road 4N73Y. Our
investigations of these reports have found that some individuals have been target shooting
in appropriate locations and others have been in violation of the Code of Federal
Regulations (36CFR261.10). We continue to work to cite and educate those that are in
violation.

The displacement of target shooters from Candy Rock Quarry to other areas of the
National Forest is a result of restrictions on target shooting at the quarry and will be
weighed in the EIS. The Forest Supervisor will take that into consideration in making a
final decision regarding whether or not to continue to allow target shooting at Candy
Rock Quarry.

Thank you for your continued interest in the management of our National Forest lands.

Sincerely,
TERESA M MCCLUNG
District Ranger
Cc: Merita Callaway, Calaveras County Supervisor District 3
Gary Kuntz, Calaveras County Sheriff



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