When Sen. Jon Tester was campaigning, he promised a new standard in transparency and public participation. As evidenced by the Sept. 26 meeting in Dillon on his proposed Forest Jobs and Recreation Act, it is revealed that his standards and the general public's are far apart.
A 45-minute sales pitch but not a single question or meaningful comment allowed reflects the same strategy used to craft the bill. Just because we disagree, it does not mean we are right-wing extremist, gun-toting tea baggers, as has been characterized by staff members.
The only guaranteed winners in the bill are the wilderness advocates. Too many stakeholders, including recreationists and local governments, have been excluded. We deserve better. Start the process over with all lawful stakeholder's involvement.