When Humboldt-Toiyabe Forest Supervisor Gloria
Flora resigned last November, she said local hostility toward
federal employees was a major reason for stepping down (HCN,
11/22/99: Nevadans drive out forest supervisor). Now, a letter has
surfaced from a county official that supports her
In a Dec. 30, 1998, letter to public
land-use advisor Gene Gustin, Elko County District Attorney Gary
Woodbury suggested that local businesses stop selling goods or
services to the Forest Service "until they come to their senses."
The Forest Service had closed a road over local protests to protect
habitat for the bull trout, a threatened
Besides advising "community
non-cooperation" with the Forest Service, the attorney proposed
that Elko County sponsor a speaking program and radio and newspaper
ads urging a boycott of the agency. Woodbury also suggested the
possibility of "veiled threats of criminal prosecutions of federal
employees who arguably violate state law by this office."
A team sent to investigate Flora's fed-bashing
claims in February, however, failed to find enough evidence for
The letter apparently did
not surface in any official discussions until a March 2000 county
commissioners' meeting. There is no evidence the county undertook
the recommended actions.
defended his letter, comparing his suggestions to the Montgomery,
Ala., bus boycott inspired by Rosa Parks. "And have you ever seen
the sign in restaurants that says 'No shirt, no shoes, no service?'
" he told the Elko Daily Free Press. "Would you
not agree that the restaurant is denying service because of a