Forest Management Key to Preventing Catastrophic Wildfires, Combatting Rural Poverty

In a letter to federal land managers, Oregon Congressman Greg Walden urges the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service to recognize forest management as a solution for preventing catastrophic wildfires and combatting rural poverty. Here's an excerpt of the letter:

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Commissioner Simon Hare on Forest Management and Rural Communities

Watch County Commissioner Simon Hare discuss how active forest management can help restore more economic opportunity for rural communities.

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Graphic: Who Owns Oregon's Forests?

Compare land ownership and current harvest activity in Oregon. The federal government manages the majority of forestland in the state, yet three-quarters of timber harvest come from private forestland.

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New Grassroots Organization Supports Federal Forest Reform

Rural county commissioners today announced the launch of Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities, a new grassroots organization supporting congressional action on a permanent and comprehensive solution to restore the health of rural communities and surrounding federal forest lands.  The organization was formed to educate citizens on current federal policies and how they negatively impact rural communities, their local governments and the health of the forests.

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Federal Forest Reform Will Help Fight Rural Poverty

In Washington D.C. the growing debate over reforming federal forest policies is focused on improving forest health and providing a short-term extension of timber payments to county governments.  These issues are important, but the primary goal of any federal forest legislation should be to promote forest management as a means to increasing employment and fighting poverty in our distressed, timber-dependent rural communities. 

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An Urgent Plea from the West's Most "Environmentally Protected" County

Skamania County Commissioners this week issued a compelling plea to their Congressional delegation for a forest management solution that helps create jobs and sustain essential services. As the "most environmentally protected county in the West," Skamania lacks economic opportunities while their total budget has been reduced by 50 percent.

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Poverty in Washington State's Timber Country

In the heart of Washington State's timber country, enrollment in the Free and Reduced Meal Program runs as high as 70 percent.

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Graphic: Who Owns the West?

This nifty graphic illustrates federal land as a percentage of total state land area.

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O&C Counties: Another Casualty of Federal Forest Management

The Association of O&C Counties sent a letter this week to U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon) and Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) about the recent closure of Josephine County's last sawmill and the failure of federal forest policy to protect rural communities.

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Josi: Timber Solution Needs Passing

From the Salem Statesman Journal: Tillamook County Commissioner Tim Josi says active forest management is a key solution for alleviating rural poverty and helping local governments fund essential services:

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