The Monterey Ranger District of the Los Padres National Forest has proposed the construction of a series of fuelbreaks both inside and outside of the Ventana Wilderness. Entitled the Strategic Community Fuelbreak Improvement Project, the stated purpose of the fuelbreaks is to “enhance protection for at-risk communities from fire.”
The VWA makes every attempt to formally comment on all NEPA and CEQA issues which have the potential to adversely impact the natural or cultural resources of the northern Santa Lucias. NEPA and CEQA are similar laws with a common purpose - each initiates a process that examines and evaluates the potential environmental consequences of proposed actions before those actions are undertaken.
In 2012, Monterey District Ranger Sherry Tune, US Forest Service, approved the Milpitas Special Interest Area Collaborative Management Plan. This was a significant step in the protection of the unique cultural, natural and scenic values of an area designated as a Special Interest Area by the Forest Service in 2005. The Milpitas SIA (MSIA) contains approximately 9,500 acres located in the upper watershed of the San Antonio River, much of which is within the Ventana Wilderness. It is approximately 17 miles from Mission San Antonio near the border of Fort Hunter Liggett.
An Army Reserve installation operated by Installation Management Command, Fort Hunter Liggett is adjacent to Los Padres National Forest in southern Monterey County. Active and Reserve Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine and Coast Guard units from across the country train at the Fort. Military training operations at Fort Hunter Liggett’s 162,000 acres include live fire, bivouac, and convoy training, and use of different training areas based on the activities involved.