For a good portion of the year, CLC has been representing Friends of the White River in a Tree Clearing Settlement Agreement with the US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) to ensure that the proposed tree clearing on the Indianapolis banks of the White River represents the community as well as the safety concerns it addresses.
Director Bill Weeks spoke at Friends of the White River annual meeting this February. CLC has been assisting FOTWR in negotiations with the DNR about tree removal on the White River levee.
At the event, President Dan Valleskey presented the organization's annual award to CLC. The hand-made carved paddle represents FOTWR's gratitude for CLC's legal council.
The Conservation Law Center is representing Friends of the White River in contesting a plan to strip vegetation in the White River corridor from Broad Ripple to Kessler in Indianapolis. This much loved urban oasis is home to mature bottomland hardwood forest of considerable ecological value. Apparently relying on outdated advice from the Corps of Engineers, the City of Indianapolis has claimed that the riverside levee must be clear of vegetation in order to obtain a safety certification. CLC will argue that Congress has changed the law as to vegetation clearing, and that the city's application for a permit to clear the trees should be denied.