Articles written by John Rice


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  • Open Federal lands or give management over to the state

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Jul 2, 2020

    That was a great article in the Thursday, June 18 issue of the Pathfinder by Dale Terrillion on “Public Lands”. It seems the government forgets who owns and pays taxes to support public lands. I don’t understand why disabled groups, senior citizen groups, sports groups and wild life groups can’t get together and file class action lawsuits to open up public lands to all citizens. Why are we paying for property we can’t have access to and enjoy? There should be representatives made up of members of these various groups along with representation f...

  • Government should stay out of business

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|May 14, 2020

    Our Governor Steve Bullock has made an error in judgment with his decision to force Montana landlords into canceling evictions and extending rental payments. What Bullock fails to realize is that although most tenants will eventually pay the rents that are owed, some will stay in the rental as long as they can before sneaking out. This does not take into account those late charges the landlord might still have to pay on related loans. Because of the fact that the Governor is not willing to cover these expenses that he has forced onto landlords,...

  • Government regulations inhibit handyman services

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    We now have many Montanans wanting to work to support their families but in my opinion are prohibited from doing so by intrusive government regulations. Private homeowners and landlords in Montana that need to have maintenance work done and now qualify for low interest loans are also hampered by the same laws. I understand that many professional service providers will not work doing minor maintenance on older homes or mobile homes, even though they can charge many times more than a handyman. If they do concede to work, I believe many do so by...

  • More handymen would be win-win for Montana

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Feb 20, 2020

    The task force the governor has created to protect Montana’s workers, businesses and taxpayers sounds good on paper but sometimes good intentions end up hurting our poor and less fortunate at the expense of protecting the more affluent. Other than fighting high taxes and property insurance, low and fixed income property owners and landlords face a continuing problem of property maintenance. When landlords have to pay excessive amounts for maintenance, those costs are passed on to the tenant through higher rents. It should be noted that the o...

  • Reopen National Forest Service roads

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Nov 7, 2019

    In response to Seeley Swan Pathfinder’s Oct. 24 article titled “Illegal access to Forest Service roads needs community solution” as requested by Seeley Lake District Ranger Quinn Carver. The solution is as per my previous discussion with Mr. Carver. Simply, open up public lands to the public. The National Forest Service has closed thousands of public access roads to the taxpaying public for years using one environmental excuse after another. The result is always the same, once closed they never reopen. The destruction caused by the Rice Ridge...

  • Real changes must be made at the top

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Aug 30, 2018

    Kudos to Curtis Friede and his petition to remove the current Ranger of the Seeley Lake Ranger District and hopefully any others in the National Forest Service responsible for recent decisions made by the United State Forest Service. However, anyone who has had any recent dealings with this agency knows that this Ranger and at least her next two supervisors are mere puppets. They are indeed team players who cannot or will not think and/or act outside the box. An example is Seeley Ranger supervisor Ranger Garcia and his defense of the Seeley...

  • Agencies Working for Job Protection

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Jul 19, 2018

    What does the U.S. Forest Service, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corp of Engineers all have in common? They are all involved in job protection regardless of the cost to the U.S. taxpayer. We all know about the Forest Service and their “We fight fires, we don’t put them out” policy. They certainly don’t manage the forest properly by thinning trees and underbrush to avoid the costly fires. The EPA and Army Corp of Engineers seems to have the same policy of always responding after the fact. The EPA doesn’t seem to care abou...

  • Cut the Fat, Streamline the USFS and Make It Accountable

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Mar 1, 2018

    With respect to US Forest Service Regional Forester Leanne Martin’s Editorial request for an open checkbook for mismanagement of our national forest. One thing about our National Forest Service employees, they have more guts than government mules. For the first time in over a hundred years the Forest Service wants special funding to fight forest fires that they refuse to put out. At least in part due to their let it burn policy and destructive backfires, we lost millions of dollars that could have created jobs to help the unemployed and two f...

  • View on the Seeley Lake Sewer

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Dec 7, 2017

    SEELEY LAKE - I have been asked my views on the Seeley Lake Sewer. They are very simple and one we all know to be true. Government is notorious for creating fear to motivate folks into doing something their common sense would ordinarily dictate otherwise. This is because the first agenda of bureaucrats in government is to protect their positions in government through fear and consequently expansion of government. To avoid exposure to their true agenda, government will almost always use assessments which amount to speculation rather than...

  • Go Blow Your Horn

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Sep 7, 2017

    I am really getting tired of all the advertisements about all the good things our good old Montana boy Jon Tester is doing for Montana. Anytime I hear a politician continually blowing their horn I get suspicious. That`s certainly is the case with Mr. Tester. An example is his purported support for our veterans. I think we all support our veterans and would do anything for them. However, I have misgivings about Mr. Tester’s support of disabled veterans when I see him supporting the limiting of access to our public National Forest to special i...

  • Don't Just Let It Burn

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Aug 17, 2017

    Having just read Professor Fernanda Santos letter in the Aug. 10 Missoulian entitled “Some Wildfires Simply Cannot Be Fought.” I think Fernando’s letter sounds just like articles written by most National Forest Service people. In other words, they have a lot to say about nothing. For one thing Ms. Santos unlike a fire in properly thinned forest which is sometimes beneficial, a fire in forest which is not properly managed burns so hot that it destroys the nutrients in the soil making recovery a lot longer. Following the Forest Service ‘”let it b...

  • Year Round Wheeled Vehicle Access on Cottonwood Lakes Road – Appeal to the Court of Public Opinion

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Apr 13, 2017

    SEELEY LAKE - On March 16, a meeting was held at the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) Office in Missoula to discuss the issue of whether the Rice Family should have vehicular use of the Cottonwood Lake Road for year around access to their property. Those in attendance were John Rice representing the Rice Family, John’s fiancée Lizzie Lescantz, Andi Bourne co-editor of the Seeley Swan Pathfinder, Seeley Lake Ranger District Ranger Rachael Feigley, USFS Region 1 Realty Specialist Mark Petersen and Lolo National Forest Supervisor Timothy Garcia. The me...

  • Stand Up to Mismanagement and Demand Change

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Mar 30, 2017

    That was a great guest column article by Senator Fred Thomas in the March 21 edition of the Missoulian. Senator Thomas was right on target with respect to mismanagement of our public lands by the Federal Government and the tremendous waste created by senseless lawsuits filed by environmental groups. Given the facts that Senator Thomas has exposed in his article to the Missoulian, if Governor Bullock thinks the State of Montana cannot do a better job of managing our public lands, then just imagine what a competent governor that believes in his...

  • Response to "Not My Land"

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Feb 2, 2017

    SEELEY LAKE - In response to the recent letter to the Pathfinder Editor dated Jan. 19, 2017 entitled Not My Land by Roxie Sterling. My family also has a long history here with a grandfather who ran a stagecoach and later became sheriff of Missoula County. Roxie, I am sure you would agree that your property value increased as a result of the Double Arrow Development. However, the same cannot be said of the property values of those unfortunate folks who are neighbors of this gravel pit if it is allowed to proceed. I am also quite sure you must...

  • Shame on Commissioners

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Jan 5, 2017

    SEELEY LAKE - The Missoula County Commissioners have refused to give aid in preventing a gravel pit and asphalt plant that has been purposed for property on the Cottonwood Lakes Road. The Commissioners don’t seem to have any problem with these citizens paying taxes for programs such as a new Missoula Library or Missoula Parks and Trails that directly benefit the City of Missoula and a handful of county residents close to town but is of very little use to those in Seeley Lake and other outer areas of the County. If the commissioners are not c...

  • Seeley Lake Ranger District Not Addressing Safety and Environmental Threat

    John Rice, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Dec 29, 2016

    SEELEY LAKE - I recently read in the Dec. 8 edition of the Pathfinder a considerably lengthy article by Seeley Lake Ranger Rachel Feigley concerning all the good work and cooperation of the National Forest Service. So, I am left somewhat confused as to why Ranger Feigley seems to be reluctant to address one of the biggest threats to the local environment and the safety and well being of the citizens and other recreationalists that come to Seeley Lake. Of course I am speaking of the purposed gravel pit and asphalt plant on the Cottonwood Lakes...

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