BLM and USFS Lawsuit
Organized by: chelsey larson
My family has land that is bordered by BLM wilderness and USFS, and it is the only private property in the area. Over the years that this land has been in the family, there have been numerous issues with the local BLM and USFS employees, supervisors, district and regional leaders due to continued trespass by their employees and contactors, destruction of our fences, placement of government signs and property within our property boundaries, and, the biggest issue of all, placement of a trail maintained and advertised by both the BLM and USFS maps and recreation offices across our property without ever gaining an easement or any form of permission from my father and grandfather.
One of the biggest issues beyond the trail and trespassing just happened. We went out to check on the property, fences, corrals, water pipeline, and major springs this weekend (as it is in the desert, water is a major concern) and found that the corral had been torn down and partially burned, the fences had been cut every few feet, posts cut off at the ground or burned, pipeline cut, water troughs full of holes or filled with cement, and the major springs on the property were fenced in by the government agencies to where we could not see if they were still running with signs stating that anyone attempting to access the water would be federally prosecuted.
Five years ago, I started in on the fight to have the trail removed from our property, all signage removed, and for them to cease SELLING MAPS THAT SHOW THE TRAIL ON OUR PRIVATE LAND. Even today, they are still selling those maps, encouraging trespass by hikers and others looking to recreate in the area, and encouraging their employees/contractors to treat our private land, even though it is posted private, as though it is public lands. We have tried to work with them to come to an end to this, especially the fact that they are PROFITING by selling the maps and having people trespass, not to mention the most recent damages with flat out destruction of our land, resources, and required items to be able to use the property for summer grazing, but after five years direct involvement by me, we have realized we must pursue this with an attorney.
My grandfather is 99 years old and in failing health, father is 73 and having serious health issues; both requiring funds for medical care with none available for the lawsuit or legal assistance required.
Any and all help would be greatly appreciated as this situation is causing a lot of stress to my grandfather and father, which is making their health issue worse. I love them both with all my heart and it is destroying me to see them so depressed, stressed, and frustrated over a situation that has dragged on for more years than acceptable.
If possible, we are hoping to have funds available as soon as possible because the legal assistance we have spoken with requires a retainer up front to cover filling fees- which would have to be in both the federal court in Salt Lake City and, due to the issues involved, especially from this past weekend, Washington, DC.
Any help you are willing to provide would be greatly appreciated! The thought of losing my father and grandfather over stress increased by trying to come up with the money to end this problem, let alone having the problem continue on as it has, with no end in sight, due to the BLM and USFS not treating my family with any form of respect is breaking my heart.
Thank you in advance and blessings.