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Reader input: Don’t block public access to Bear River

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   Our public access to the Bear River is threatened.
   There is six miles of the Bear River left between the Rollins and Combie reservoirs.  We the people have free access to this beautiful river and flowing water. Some people kayak, tube or raft from the public access on Milk Ranch Road downriver to the Dog Bar Bridge. Many people pan and sluice for gold, hike, fish and swim along this river. The   Bear River campgrounds offer free access on land owned in the public trust by the state of California, and managed by Placer County Parks for the public interest. (Seehttp://www.placer.ca.gov/departments/facility/parks/parks-content/parks/bear-river-park-campground.)
   This access to public lands and water is a right that we the people hold.
   This right to access these public lands and the Bear River is threatened by Nevada Irrigation District, based in Nevada County. We have no representation on their elected board and no ability to influence their agenda.  
   Our rights will be taken away from the many for the few if NID is successful in its third attempt to build yet another dam on our Bear River. Centennial Reservoir, called the Parker Dam proposal since 1926, would flood all the lands between Combie Reservoir and Rollins Reservoir. There would be no river left! The last of the local indigenous people’s sacred sites, burials and cultural sites would be wiped out. The Bear River campgrounds and Dog Bar crossing, the last public access in our area to the Bear River, will be gone.
   Will we stand aside and allow this further taking of our access to public lands and clean water? If we the people stand together, we can change this terrible plan. What can you do? Go to http://www.savebearriver.com/, sign our petition, like us on facebook at Save Bear River or No Centennial Dam.  
   There will be another Bear River Celebration at the group campground on Plum Tree Road near Colfax on the Bear River Oct. 8 and 9.  Information at www.savebearriver.com.  If we stand together, we can make a better plan for everyone.
   Dianna Suarez, Colfax