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Gustavus man cited for misuse of refuse

Posted: May 12, 2011 - 8:27pm

A Gustavus man pled guilty in a plea agreement in United States District Court in Juneau on Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Leslie Longenbaugh for violating National Park Service laws.

Roger D. Buttram, 65, appearing by telephone, was charged with misuse of refuse on Park Service lands, an offense that carries a maximum of six months in jail and a $5,000 fine. Park rules state when individuals are in the park and generate trash it can be dumped there, but trash brought in from outside the park cannot be disposed of there.

On Jan. 2, Buttram used the facilities in Glacier Bay National Park when passing through on his boat. Park Service employees said a trash barrel at the visitor’s information station was left three-quarters full of trash and magazines. Park employees retrieved the magazines and trash and contacted Buttram by phone and he admitted the magazines were his. He was issued a citation for improper use on park service land.

Individuals are allowed to use refuse facilities for the purpose of trash generated within the park itself and Buttram admitted that the magazines were an accumulation of items he placed on the boat outside the park boundaries.

Buttram said he didn’t realize he’d break the law by disposing of magazines he took on his boat for reading while underway or on fishing trips. Buttram did not dispose of other trash.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Schmidt asked for a $25 fine and $25 surcharge. The court requires a $10 special assessment fee on the conviction.

Longenbaugh said the case involved a man taking magazines off his boat and putting them where he believed they were supposed to be disposed of, and although a violation, it was a close question. Longenbaugh accepted the plea but only charged the court assessment fee and reduced fine for a total of $25.

• Contact reporter Klas Stolpe at 523-2263 or at klas.stolpe@juneauempire.com.

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