Legislation authored by Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson that would authorize important but routine maintenance at Smith Gulch on the Salmon River in Idaho has passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 398 to 1. H.R. 4283 would allow the use of limited maintenance equipment needed to maintain the routine functions and safety of the existing lodge.
"This legislation clarifies Congress' intent of the 2004 amendments to the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act which continued the existing use and occupancy of commercial services in this corridor of the Salmon River," Simpson said. "The use of maintenance equipment would allow the lodge to eliminate the reliance on outdated energy sources and replace them with modest renewable energy sources, all while complying with existing laws."
Currently, the Forest Service does not believe it has clear authorization to permit the use of the equipment necessary for the general upkeep of the facilities at the lodge. This bill clarifies the authorization so the corridor can be managed as it was intended under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.