Wild Lands policy on hold for 2011

A controversial measure that would possibly restrict off-road vehicle use on some public lands won’t be enacted during the 2011 fiscal year because of a national budget bill that passed, according to the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA).

The Wild Lands policy, which was created by Secretarial Order No. 3310, was pushed aside as the Fiscal Year 2011 Continuing Resolution was approved Friday by Congress and President Barack Obama. The new law says that no federal money can be used to enact the policy.

The Wild Lands policy would allow the federal Bureau of Land Management to manage public land as if it had received congressional wilderness designation, but without approval from Congress. On wilderness-designated land, nearly all non-pedestrian recreation is illegal.

“This is a major victory for responsible off-highway vehicle riders and others concerned about appropriate access to public land,” Ed Moreland, AMA senior vice president for government relations, said in a press release. “But we can’t let up. Anti-access groups will continue pushing for implementation of the Wild Lands policy for the next federal fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1.”

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