Stand U.P. for Safer Streets and Neighborhoods
Right now, nearly 100 commercial vehicles travel 120 miles round trip every day along a route that includes portions of County Road 550. They’re carrying minerals, lumber, fuel and more on our streets, through our communities, and across the campus of Northern Michigan University.
Proposed County Road 595 offers a shortcut to commercial trucks by completing a new Class A road over the 21-mile dirt road connecting County Road AAA in Michigamme Township with U.S. 41 in Humboldt Township. This shortcut means 1.5 million fewer miles for big rigs on Marquette County roads each year, and a big increase in traffic safety for our communities.
Stand U.P. for the Environment
Residents in the Upper Peninsula are conservationists. No one respects and protects the environment the way we do. Our lifestyle, our jobs, our families’ pasts and our children’s futures are all tied to our uniquely beautiful environment.
That’s why building County Road 595 makes so much sense.
- Building County Road 595 would protect the environment by cutting fuel consumption by over 464,000 gallons every year.
- Environmental studies show County Road 595 would prevent more than 4,989 tons of air pollution and greenhouse gasses every single year, reducing the air pollution created by traffic currently traveling the longer C.R. 550 route by 56 percent!
- One previous proposal by the Marquette County Road Commission to the EPA also offered to preserve 647 wetland acres near the McCormick Wilderness. That would have meant 26 preserved acres of wetlands for every one acre affected by construction of the road—far more than the EPA’s standard preservation guidelines. That's an offer that illustrated how seriously Marquette County takes protecting the environment.
Stand U.P. for Jobs and Economic Development
Building County Road 595 would create 200 high paying construction jobs for Upper Peninsula residents, while strengthening local employers and expanding opportunities for tourism and outdoor activities along the new route.
The Road Commission’s appeal is also about the Upper Peninsula’s future. If the current decision by the EPA becomes precedent, it threatens to affect or halt any new road development in the U.P.
Stand U.P. for Taxpayers
Pursuing an appeal by the Marquette County Road Commission won’t cost taxpayers one penny.
Stand U.P., a coalition of Upper Peninsula residents, is raising funds to cover any and all legal costs associated with the Commission’s appeal to the EPA in Washington, DC.
THE PACIFIC LEGAL FOUNDATION
In May, a federal trial court in southwest Michigan dismissed the Marquette County Road Commission’s case, based in part on its belief that a previous decision by the Eight Circuit Court, Hawkes v U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, was flawed.
Thirteen days later, the Supreme Court of the United States unanimously affirmed the Eighth Circuit’s decision in Hawkes. In response, the Road Commission immediately asked the district court to reconsider its decision based on Hawkes, and the Court has scheduled oral arguments for December.
As a result, Stand UP and the Marquette County Road Commission have announced a new partnership with the Pacific Legal Foundation, one of the nation’s oldest public interest legal organization. The Foundation has a decades-long track record of success on behalf of everyday Americans in local communities who find themselves battling the federal government over property rights.
The Foundation has taken the Road Commission’s case against the EPA and is working pro bono to overturn the EPA’s arbitrary decision to block construction of County Road 595.