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New U.S. Forest Service Planning Rules Presents Opportunities for Mountain Bike Groups

The U.S Forest Service recently announced a new set of rules that will shape the way foresters oversee its lands, including planning for and implementing trails and other recreational facilities. “This is welcome news for IMBA and its affiliated chapters and clubs,” said Mike Van Abel, IMBA's Executive Director. “IMBA’s outstanding relationship with the Forest Service sets the stage for our local affiliates to partner with individual forest units as they make plans for shared-use trails.”

IMBA sent dozens of representatives, including Trail Solutions staff, to the Forest Service’s national series of listening sessions as it was preparing for the just-announced rule change. “Those efforts proved to be worthwhile,” says Jeremy Fancher, IMBA’s lead attorney. “It’s particularly encouraging to see a renewed emphasis on following best practices and considering scientific evidence. IMBA’s partnership agreement with the Forest Service will help us provide the right information for effective recreation planning.”

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