Below is a model letter that you can send to the Senators on the sub-committee, all the Arizona legislators, and the Forest Service personnel. It’s best if your change part of it and add your own words, especially in the first paragraph. The contact info is given below. It’s a long list, but I figure the more who know of the situation, the better off we are.

Better still, I recommend that you give them a quick call. A half-dozen bills are scheduled for June 17, so the committee could just pass it through without paying any attention to the details. However, if all the committee members get some 60 phone calls from Arizona concerned citizens, they just might think twice. Also, Congress persons receive some 5,000 e-mails a week!!!

First, write President Obama requesting his affirmation of PLO-1229: Sample Letter

The President contact:

Second, put your comments in the public record: Sample Letter

Senate Subcommittee on Public Lands and Forests
Phone: (202) 224-4971

To put your comments in the public records:
Anna Fox, Clerk
Phone: 202) 224-4971
Fax: (202) 224-7970

Sample letter for Senators and other contacts:

Dear Senator or Rep, etc __________:

I am writing you because you are a member of the Public Lands and Forest sub-committee, which will be hearing Bill S.409 on Wednesday, June 17. As a resident of Arizona, I am concerned that the U.S. Government is giving away beautiful, scenic, recreational land that also has a historical significance for the local Native Americans. Further, this site is in the Tonto National Forest, which has only 1% of riparian area to give water to the wildlife. In fact, a Riparian Area Program has been created to protect, enhance and restore riparian areas there.

The progenitors of this Bill have contacted or met any of the local Nations. Neither have they visited any of the sites that are being considered in the exchange—for none of them are significant. They are useless, over-grazed ranches that were sold to the mining company at fire sale prices (one of them actually was burned out). Not a one of them has ever been set aside by Presidential Order, as was Oak Flat in 1955, by President Eisenhower (PLO-1229).

I am requesting that the two Arizona Senators who introduced the bill disclose how much of the $210,813 (McCain-2008) and $82,823 (Kyl-2006) in political contributions they received from mining companies were from Resolution Copper, BHP and Rio Tinto, or any of their subsidiaries.

The records show that Rio Tinto and BHP (with their subsidiaries) are two of the worst polluters on the planet. Kennecott in Utah has one Superfund site and another that was just moved from the potential Superfund list.

Here in Arizona, we value the places we have for recreation and for wildlife. Oak Flat is a special place for bird watchers; the campground billboard warns that it is bear territory. Nearby Devil’s Canyon is also a unique treasure for rock climbers and birders. The mining operations will have to pump water out a region a mile in diameter. This pumping is sure to rob the trees and vegetation in the whole region of the water to sustain themselves.

While most of you have no idea of the impacts of mining—high water usage, waste piles 100’s of feet high, sulfuric acid leach facilities, blowing dust, and the converting of a scenic highway into a haul road for huge trucks to carry ore to the smelter—we hope you will help us who do know the ramifications very well and leave Oak Flat and Devil’s Canyon.


Contact List:

The Speaker of the House contact:
Rep. Nancy Pelosi

Legislator Contacts:

First and foremost, contact the culprits who introduced the bill:

John McCain = $210,813 from mining in 2008 campaign
(202) 224-2235
Fax (202)228-2862

Jon Kyl = $82,823 from mining in 2006 campaign
(202) 224-4521
Fax: (202) 224-2207

Most important, contact the members of the sub-committee who will be hearing the bill:

Contact Info for Public Lands and Forests sub-committee:

Note: some of the e-mails are accepted only from the state of the Senator. Simply choose their state and enter a zip code for that state. I’ve entered a zip to use with the state. That’s why it’s important to tell them you are contacting them because they are on the Parks and Public lands sub-committee that is considering a bill that will affect Arizona—whether you are writing a letter or making a phone call.

Democratic Subcommittee Members:

Ron Wyden (Chairman); Oregon
(202) 224-5244

Tim Johnson; South Dakota
Tel: (202) 224-5842

Mary L. Landrieu; Louisiana— 71101
Voice: (202)224-5824
Fax:(202) 224-9735

Maria Cantwell; Washington
202-228-0514 – FAX

Robert Menendez; New Jersey—07102
Phone: 202.224.4744
Fax: 202.228.2197

Blanche Lincoln; Arkansas—72201
Phone: (202)224-4843
Fax: (202)228-1371

Mark Udall; Colorado—81501
Phone: (202) 224-5941
Fax: (202) 224-6471

Jeanne Shaheen; NH
(202) 224-2841

Republican Subcommittee Members

John Barrasso; Wyoming—82801
Phone: 202-224-6441
Fax: 202-224-1724

Jeff Sessions; Alabama—35203
Phone: (202) 224-4124
Fax: (202) 224-3149

John McCain; Arizona—85614
Phone: (202) 224-2235
Fax: (202) 228-2862

Bob Bennett; Utah— 84138
Phone: (202) 224-5444 (ie, response not necessary)

Bob Corker; Tennessee—38301
Phone: 202-224-3344

James E. Risch
Phone: 202-224-2752
Fax: 202-224-2573

Jeff Bingaman; NM (ex officio member)
Phone: (202) 224-5521

Lisa Murkowski; Alaska—99501 (ex officio member)
Phone: 202-224-6665
Fax: 202-224-5301

Next most important, contact all Arizona legislators:

(You will have to change the letter to read, “I am writing you because you are supporting the Resolution Copper land exchange bill HR 2509," excluding Rep. Grijalva. You can tell him you are writing to others to express your opposition to the bill—and thank him for the good work he is doing sensible mining in Arizona.”)

Next, contact USDA/Forest Service personnel:

Agriculture Secretary
(A postal letter is necessary in this case)
Tom J. Vilsack, Secretary
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W.
Washington, DC 20250

National Forest Service Chief:
(A postal letter is necessary in this case)
Abigail R. Kimball
U.S. Forest Service
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Mail Stop 1144
Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
(202) 205-1661

NM/AZ Regional Forest Service Office:

Harv Forsgren
USDA Forest Service
333 Broadway Blvd. SE
Albuquerque, NM 87102

Natural Resources Conservation Service of Forest Service

Renee Bodine
230 N. First Avenue, Suite 509
Phoenix , AZ 85003-1706
FAX 602-280-8809

Director Public Affairs Division
Dianne Guidry
14th & Independence Avenue SW
Room 6121-S
Washington , DC 20013
Phone: 202-720-2182
FAX 202-720-1564

Tonto National Forest Personnel:

Gene Blankenbaker
Tonto National Forest
2324 E. McDowell Road Phoenix, Arizona 85006
Phone: (602) 225-5200
Fax: (602) 225-5295
Send through Public Affairs Ass’t:

Richard Reitz
Globe Ranger District
7680 S. Six Shooter Canyon Rd.
Globe, Arizona 85501
Phone: (928) 402-6200
Fax: (928) 402-6292
Send through receptionist:

Karyn B. Harbour
Minerals Administrator / Forest Geologist
Tonto National Forest
2324 E. McDowell Road
Phoenix, AZ   85006
602.225-5295 Fax

Page Rockett
Riparian Resource Management
Tonto National Forest
2324 E. McDowell Road
Phoenix, AZ   85006

USDA Contacts—communications, media, etc.
Jim Brownlee (202) 720-4623

Jennifer Martin, (202) 720-8188