NEWS

Budget Windfall or Media Posturing?

The announcement this past Friday, the 20th, had activists across the board angry at Sacramento. After the much contested cuts to OHV, and the year-long threat of State Park closures, the discovery of $50 million in unaccounted for funds at the Department of Parks and Recreation has had everyone wondering why we were asked to jump into emergency action mode when it seems like the money was available all along.

But, as many of these things often are, it is more complicated than it is being reported as in the press. First, the $50 million is not free-and-clear money. $33.5 million of it is part of the OHV trust fund, meaning that it can only (and could only have ever) been used for the Department's OHV program. Even had this $33.5 million been discovered earlier, it could not have been used to save any of the 70 State Parks that were on the closure list.

Read more: Budget Windfall or Media Posturing?

Jawbone Canyon Plays Host to the Desert Advisory Council

About forty members of the public, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) representatives, and Desert Advisory Council (DAC) members met early on Friday morning, the 20th of April, to take a tour of the El Paso Mountains and Jawbone Canyon. The Desert Advisory Council advises the BLM on the management of the nearly 11 million acres which comprise the California Desert District. To be sure that they have an accurate knowledge of the areas on which they are advising the DAC periodically takes tours of various areas of interest, in this case with the BLM leading the tour in conjunction with Friends of Jawbone. For DAC Members it was a chance to see the backroads of the El Paso Mountains and Jawbone Canyon regions. For the public it was a unique opportunity to see the DAC and BLM in action and witness first hand the areas being affected by the WEMO act and various conservation projects.

Read more: Jawbone Canyon Plays Host to the Desert Advisory Council

Bickel Camp Needs You!

Since 2006 Friends of Jawbone has actively supported the caretakers, and the non-profit organization Friends of Last Chance Canyon, in their efforts to preserve Bickel Camp, including donating a quad to the camp which was recently used to help clear the area of trash. So many of these historic, depression-era mining camps have been looted over the years that it feels important to help provide a way to protect Bickel Camp from suffering the same fate as the Burro Schmidt camp.

If you have long loved visiting Bickel Camp and often wondered what it would be like to live and work in that scenic and isolated area then we have a special opportunity for you. Caretakers are needed at Bickel Camp and you can help!

Read more: Bickel Camp Needs You!

New Hotel in California City Offers Easy Access to Jawbone!

As we gear-up for Moose Anderson Day and the ribbon cutting of our new building expansion we’d like to remind area riders that you no longer have to choose between camping out in the desert heat or the long drive in from Mojave. The new Best Western Hotel has opened in California City proper, a mere 15 miles from the Jawbone Canyon station!

Read more: New Hotel in California City Offers Easy Access to Jawbone!

Governor Restores Most of OHV Budget Cuts!

It passed the California Senate. It passed the California House.  But when the budget bill to cut the entire $21 million OHV Grants program landed on his desk, Governor Brown heard you and agreed it had gone too far.

Despite cutting an additional $195 million in spending from the budget, the Governor managed to restore $14 million to the OHV Grants Program through a line-item veto. 

Read more: Governor Restores Most of OHV Budget Cuts!

FOJ Working with CalTrans

As Highway 14 prepares for another expansion, this time north of Red Rock Canyon, Friends of Jawbone President Ed Waldheim is once again hard at work with BLM & CalTrans to maintain OHV access to the designated routes on both sides of the highway.

Read more: FOJ Working with CalTrans