Democrats kick back: The politics of growth

October 14, 2002

After a decade and a half without reasonable or effective leadership,Arizona has become the West's most incompetently run state, its politics propelled almost entirely by growth. This year's gubernatorial election offers a chance for change. Also in this issue: The 1994 Northwest Forest Plan was seen as a watershed move to balance logging with environmental protection. But logging companies say the plan's controversial species-management provision has put too much land off-limits, and now the Bush administration is moving to relax the rules.


Around the West, the hot races to watch
HCN takes a state-by-state look at the most important elections coming up in the West.
Montanans may take back their dams
In Montana, Initiative 145 would undo the deregulation of power in the state, allowing citizens to take back control of hydroelectric dams.
New Mexico Greens lose steam
The recent decline in support for the New Mexico Green Party seems to have no effect on the hopes of its candidates or the anxiety of the state's Democratic party, which sees the Greens as spoilers.
Utahns could kill radioactive dump
In Utah, an initiative that would triple the cost of disposal at Envirocare's radioactive waste dump in Tooele County and it from taking hotter wastes is being fiercely fought by the company.
The politics of growth
Almost every major election in Arizona is up for grabs this year, along with a rash of ballot initiatives, and some observers hope the state can pull out of its headlong rush into uncontrolled growth and development.


State's big nuke waste fight takes a hit
A federal judge has struck down a series of Utah laws meant to block a planned high-level nuclear waste storage facility on the Skull Valley Goshute Reservation.

Editor's Note

Democrats kick back
An introduction to the special election issue says that voting should be less predictable in the West this year.


A crossed heritage in the modern West
How did the Republican Party cease being the party of conservation, and why do Westerners continue to give it their support?

Book Reviews

Peer pressure
The Web site of PEER - Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility - features a report on increasing violence against National Park Service employees, along with other topics.
The coalbed methane super-prime
The Rocky Mountain Mineral Foundation is holding a two-day conference on "Regulation and Development of Coalbed Methane."
Research, Lake Mead style
A floating laboratory called Forever Earth prowls Nevada's Lake Mead, doing scientific research and working with academic and environmental groups.
Native Waters
In Native Waters: Contemporary Indian Water Settlements and the Second Treaty Era, scholar Daniel McCool explores the current struggle by tribes to finally get the water they have long been promised by treaty.
Have you ever seen the cranes?
In New Mexico, Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge celebrates its annual Festival of the Cranes in November.

Writers on the Range

What's in a name? Just ask Dwayne or Trucklene
An encounter in a bar with a guy named Dwayne causes a writer named Mary Lou to ponder the hidden meanings lurking behind first names in the West.

Heard Around the West

Heard Around the West
Utah leads in bankruptcy and stupid chili-roasting laws; Jackson Hole Guide fact-checks New York Times; new mascot - Reddy the Squirrel - wants to replace Smokey Bear; Boulder vs. starling control; and Forest Service workers vs. fee demo program.

Dear Friends

Lassoing the West's polital winds
Tim Egan speaks at HCN Seattle board meeting; Ed Marston steps aside; correction; Betsy Offermann obituary
He sees the society behind the scenery
Interim HCN publisher Paul Larmer remembers his first encounter with retiring publisher Ed Marston, and considers what he - and the paper - have gained under Marston's aegis.


Forest protection under the knife
The Bush administration bows to pressure from the logging industry to revise the Clinton-era Northwest Forest Plan.
Wildlife Service bows to home builders
Under pressure from the home-building industry, the Fish and Wildlife Service drastically trims critical habitat for the threatened California red-legged frog.
The Latest Bounce
San Gabriel Watersheds Study Act passes House; Sisters' cattle removed from BLM land; Gold mine resurrected for land sacred to Indians; Utah Rep. Jim Hansen makes deal to sell site to Mormon Church; and Mont. Gov. says miners are "true environmentalists."
Albuquerque is dragged into Rio Grande fight
The city of Albuquerque, N.M., is fighting a judge's order that says city water must be released from reservoirs into the Rio Grande to save the endangered silvery minnow.
Dead fish clog the low-flowing Klamath
Thousands of steelhead and chinook and coho salmon have died in Northern California's Klamath River, and conservationists blame the Bush administration's decision to lower river flows.
Conversation with a cowboy conservationist
Cowboy poet, rancher and environmentalist Wally McRae talks about the romance of the range and the hard reality of things like coal development in Montana.


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