Over the weekend, Jim Mann of the Daily Inter Lake posted a nice article on the recently completed work of the Whitefish Range Partnership . . .
After meeting regularly for 13 months, a group of people representing a highly diverse range of interests recently signed off on recommendations to the Flathead National Forest for long-term management in the North Fork Flathead drainage.
Considering there were 30 signatories going along with a requirement for complete consensus or no recommendations at all, the accomplishment of the Whitefish Range Partnership is remarkable, particularly at a time when divisiveness dominates the national political stage. “Polarization is real easy,” said former state legislator and Secretary of State Bob Brown, who chaired the partnership. “It’s easy for politicians and political leaders to play to their own loyalists and it’s hard to compromise, but when you’re sitting across the table from someone who is your fellow community member, you see how much you have in common.”
And that’s exactly what the privately organized partnership did, meeting roughly twice a month at venues where home cooking and beer were on tap. The idea was to work through differences on wildland fire management, weed management, wildlife, timber management, backcountry trails, mountain biking and trail use, fisheries management, snowmobiling and recommended wilderness.