All posts by jdruding

Update on Pinelands Commission Meeting / OTNJ Membership!

The Pinelands Commission meeting this past Friday was well attended. Due to our rapid response we were able to head off any immediate resolutions regarding the invalid 2014 topographical map, but the battle continues. The Pinelands Commission has resolved to look at areas within Wharton that require protection. Open Trails will follow this process every step of the way, assist where possible, and fight against any overly restrictive policies. Open Trails NJ has been fighting to protect your rights for 8 months and we will continue to do so for as long as it takes. Today, we are announcing OTNJ membership! You can support OTNJ by volunteering, becoming a member or both. Our yearly membership price is $25, however, for a limited time, we are offering our memberships for a discounted price of $20! By joining you Open Trails, you will get the following: Our exclusive Open Trails decal, Open Trails Membership card and a Quarterly Newsletter. Additional member benefits will be added over time!

Click here to Join!

Get Involved with OTNJ!

_DSC2650As you enjoy this spring like day, remember that spring is right around the corner and will be bringing with it more volunteer opportunities with OTNJ. We need your help! If you haven’t already,
please sign up to volunteer with us. You can contribute as much or as little as you like! Please click here for details and sign up today!

Click here!

 

 

Update on Pinelands Commission Meeting

The meeting went extremely well. Thanks to all who came out to support and especially those who spoke. Everyone made thoughtful, intelligent, and reasonable comments and it was clear the Commission was listening to us. The MAP opposition significantly, and visibly, outnumbered the MAP supporters. There was no action taken today and the Commission committed to reviewing the comments from today as well all the feedback that came in leading up to the meeting and decide what, if anything, they may recommend. OTNJ will continue to monitor this situation and alert you if any action is required.

Pinelands Commission CMP Policy and Implementation Committee Meeting

Your help is needed! There will be a meeting of the Policy and Implementation Committee of the Pinelands Commission on Friday, 1/29/16 at 9:30 AM. On the agenda is a “Discussion of DEP’s Motorized Access Plan for Wharton State Forest.” That discussion takes place right before Public Comment. This meeting is open to the public. It is important that the Pinelands Commission hear from the members of OTNJ. If you are able, please plan to attend this meeting.

When: Friday, January 29th 9:30 AM

Where:
Richard J. Sullivan Center
Terrence D. Moore Room
15 C Springfield Road
Pemberton, NJ 08064

Meetings:
http://www.nj.gov/pinelands/home/meetings/index.shtml

Agenda
http://www.nj.gov/…/home/mee…/documents/012916p&i_agenda.pdf

Article on Wharton State Forest

This article should serve as a reminder that continued vigilance is needed on this matter.  The state has continued to confirm that there is no timeline for a new plan.  They also mention enforcement and technology as part of the solution (which is also OTNJ’s position) and don’t mention mass closures.  However, the fact of the matter is, there will be a new plan at some point.  OTNJ will continue to represent the rights of responsible users of the forest and help make sure the new plan is fair and will actually solve the issues in the forest.

Courier Post Article

Volunteer Activity at Double Trouble State Park

Date: January 23, 2016

Time: Tentatively 9:00 AM, temperature permitting.

Location: Double Trouble State Forest

The State Park Service asked OTNJ to pass along this important volunteer opportunity. Note: this is not the OTNJ activity we mentioned in an earlier post, more to follow on that as soon as it is approved.

There is a project in Double Trouble State Park to thin about 10 acres of forest. The purpose is to remove stunted Dog Hair Pine trees, which will allow the larger trees to flourish and to prevent the invasion of the Southern Pine Beetle in that area. About 100 volunteers are needed to cut down the small, pre identified, Dog Hair Pine trees with bow saws. What is cut down will be left in place and will be eventually burned in a prescribed fire rotation. With a 100 volunteers, at about 10 volunteers per acre, quick work could be made of this important project!

This is a great opportunity to show that this community wants to make a difference in helping our state forests!

We will post more specifics in this event as the date approaches. Feel free to share!

Note: exact time is TBD, 10:00 AM is an aproximation.

News Before the Holidays

We just wanted to check in and give you all an update before we get into the holiday hustle and bustle. We have a few exciting things going on. First, we have been incorporated! That is getting us one step closer to being able to offer OTNJ memberships and starting to plan other activities. We have finalized our committee structure and will shortly be asking for volunteers interested in helping us out. Also, we have an upcoming meeting with the DEP next week to talk about how OTNJ can help in Wharton State Forest. Finally, on a lighter note, we spotted this supporter out “in the wild” today and it brought a smile to our faces. Thank you anonymous supporter! More to come, stay tuned!IMG_1765