After years of conflict, the U.S. Forest Service has revoked the special-use permit of the owners of Red River Hot Springs in the Nez Perce National Forest.
Among the reasons were burial of garbage in the resort parking lot and painting the bathhouse hot pink.The action had been recommended by Nez Perce Supervisor Thomas Kovalicky and Red River District Ranger Steven Williams.
The hot springs has been operated the past several months by Valerie Doremus of Los Angeles. Carroll and Virginia Adkison, however, are the owners and the special-use permit was in the Adkison's name.
Valerie Doremus and her husband, David, gave the Adkisons earnest money and agreed to buy the bathhouse, restaurant and several guest cabins.
But Carroll Adkison said after that initial contact they have heard no more from the Doremuses and have not received further payment.
The Forest Service gave the Adkisons until Sept. 30, 1991, to restore the site, he said. There is a another potential buyer if the Doremuses decide they will not purchase the hot springs, but Adkison said if no deals can be made, the buildings and pool will be destroyed.
"We don't want to do that, but we're not going to leave it for somebody else unless we're paid for it," he said.
Williams said garbage was buried in the parking lot of the hot springs, causing soil erosion into the headwaters of Red River. The Doremuses also painted the bathhouse hot pink without approval of the Forest Service.
The Doremuses allegedly sold liquor at the restaurant without state permits and did not keep track of the chlorination of the pool.
"Basically it's been a communication problem. A lot of these problems are not difficult to solve, but we've had no communication from them," Williams said.
"Our feeling is that the hot springs is an important asset to the forest and the region around here. . . . We would like to have to hot springs run for the greatest public good," said David Poncin of the Forest Service at Grangeville.