The first members of a citizens' panel formed to oversee the 272-acre Canyon Forest Village development near Grand Canyon National Park have been appointed. Backers hope Kaibab Institute will help reassure residents it will comply with its environmental promises, including one to abstain from ground water use. Karan English, a former congresswoman and now project director of the Center for Sustainable Environments at Northern Arizona University, and Richard Mangum, co-owner of Hexagon Press and a former Coconino County Superior Court justice, were appointed Aug. 9. Eventually there will be five trustees and representatives of the tribe and environmental groups. The institute will have $1.6 million for conservation projects in the Grand Canyon region. The development, facing heavy opposition from local residents, is to include hotels, stores, housing and community facilities directly south of the park entrance. Referendum petitions for the November ballot have been filed by the opposition. English and Mangum were appointed by the Tucson-based Sonoran Institute. Kaibab will oversee investment of a 1 percent levy on retail sales at the village to preserve environmentally sensitive land, restore ecologically degraded areas and offer environmental education programs. Detractors say the plan is too large, too uncertain and too much for the South Rim area.
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