Baker City Herald 3/30/2012
Excerpt: “The Wallowa-Whitman National Forest has released detailed plans for Snow Basin, a multi-year endeavor in eastern Baker County that forest officials say would improve forest health and also produce more timber than any project on the forest in the past decade.
The Wallowa-Whitman’s goal in Snow Basin, which encompasses about 28,500 acres north of Richland and west of Halfway, is to return to historic conditions with “open, park-like stands dominated by single-storied forests of large ponderosa pines surrounded by small patches of mixed conifers,” said Monica Schwalbach, forest supervisor. ….”
Read entire story at http://www.bakercityherald.com/Local-News/Forest-planning-biggest-timber-sale-in-many-years
Augusta Chronicle 3/30/2012
Excerpt: ” An audit by the Energy Department’s Inspector General suggests better oversight is needed for a program that allows the U.S. Forest Service office at Savannah River Site to buy computers and other equipment under an agreement with the Department of Energy.
The audit was initiated in response to a complaint last fall that the Forest Service office bought 17 new computers under an interagency pact, but only placed one of the machines into use.
Investigators found the remaining 16 computers still in their boxes — and stored in an unsecured location. ….”
Read entire story at http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/government/2012-03-30/audit-finds-16-17-srs-forest-service-computers-left-unused?mmo_ccc=xfinity
Daily Camera 3/30/2012
Excerpt: ” U.S. Forest Service officials on Friday suspended prescribed fires on federal land statewide — setting up new challenges for protecting power lines and people from severe wildfire risks.
Deputy regional forester Brian Ferebee made the decision covering the 14.5 million acres of national forest around Colorado — after prescribed fires scheduled this week on several individual forests were canceled — due to diversion of forest crews to suppress wildfires and to the exceptionally dry and windy conditions.
Forest Service spokesman Steve Segin characterized the suspension as “a tactical pause” and said it will be enforced for about two weeks depending on rain. Prescribed fire planning continues. …….”
Read entire article at http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_20291392/u-s-forest-service-set-suspend-prescribed-burns?source=rss
Excerpt: “The U.S. Forest Service wants to restore its federal land to a condition that can sustain itself into the future while providing for multiple uses like logging, hiking and water quality protection.
That’s the game a new 240-page rulebook will referee as forest supervisors update their management plans for 193 million acres of trees and grass. Whether restoration means bringing back the timber industry of 20 years ago or the native plant ecosystem that existed before logging will be largely up to local citizens.
“It would be left to the responsible officer, working with stakeholders throughout the area, to determine what the appropriate level of restoration would be,” Undersecretary of Agriculture Harris Sherman said on Friday. “That’s part of the collaborative process. When you bring stakeholders together, hopefully you find a balance that allows those multiple objectives to be met.” ….”
Read entire article at http://missoulian.com/news/local/new-forest-planning-rule-emphasizes-collaboration-undersecretary-says/article_297338ae-7ad8-11e1-8df6-0019bb2963f4.html
Eugene Register Guard 3/30/2012
Excerpt: “Any chance for a timely renewal of federal timber payments to counties including Lane appears to have evaporated after federal lawmakers voted Thursday to delay consideration of a new national transportation bill.
Members of the House instead voted, mostly along party lines, to pass a temporary extension of the existing transportation bill, which includes the timber payments for only three more months. That means no additional money for timber-dependent counties under what is known as the Secure Rural Schools Act, which compensates those counties for the loss of timber sale revenue. And it likely means cuts in county budgets. ….”
Read entire story at http://www.registerguard.com/web/newslocalnews/27840082-46/bill-county-federal-payments-timber.html.csp
Coloradoan Editorial; 3/30/2012
Excerpt: “An attempt to punish the federal government could potentially do much more harm to the state of Colorado.
House Bill 1322 would require the state to sell up to 22 million acres of land owned by the U.S. Forest Service in Colorado. Those lands include highly identifiable areas to Coloradans, including Indians Peaks, Greyrock and most Colorado ski resorts. ….”
Read entire editorial at http://www.coloradoan.com/article/20120330/OPINION01/203300332/Proposal-sell-public-land-must-derailed
Excerpt: “TOMBSTONE, ARIZ. — The City of Tombstone, Ariz., — population 1,500 — is suing the The United States of America.
Tombstone defined the original frontier boomtown, made famous by the gunfight at the OK Corral and law enforcement legend Wyatt Earp. It was settled at a time when prospectors largely felt the West was up for grabs, and water was theirs to claim.
But last summer’s fires and floods almost wiped out the city’s water infrastructure. Its fight against the government to rebuild it shows just how great the distance is between the Old West, and new. ….”
Read entire story at http://www.kpbs.org/news/2012/mar/30/tombstones-water-struggle/
San Fransisco Chronicle ; 3/29/2012
Excerpt: “Thousands of temporary seasonal jobs with the Forest Service and its partners are available this summer and officials say now is the time to begin the application process.
“Due to the nature of much of our work, such as wildfire fighting and seasonal recreation programs, we anticipate hiring many temporary workers,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “These jobs will provide economic relief for many unemployed Americans and help stimulate local rural communities.” ….”
Read entire news release at http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/03/29/prweb9347644.DTL
Everett Herald; 3/29/2012
Excerpt: ” DARRINGTON — A federal judge has ordered the U.S. Forest Service to remove a historic lookout from Green Mountain in the Glacier Peak Wilderness.
The mood was sour at the Darrington Historical Society meeting Wednesday evening as people were met with the news that U.S. District Judge John Coughenour ruled in favor of a Montana-based conservation group that sued to have the lookout removed. ….”
Read entire article at http://www.heraldnet.com/article/20120329/NEWS01/703299816/1005
Excerpt: “Have you summited one of Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks? Skied at a Colorado ski resort? Rafted the Poudre River? Climbed Greyrock or hiked in the Indian Peaks?
If so, chances are, you did it on federally owned public land managed by the U.S. Forest Service.
As currently written, a GOP-sponsored bill making its way through the Colorado Legislature would require the U.S. government to sell off nearly all of that land – 22 million acres of it – to the highest bidder, likely taking it out of the public domain and removing any or all environmental protections, and possibly public access, that land currently has. …..”
Read entire story at http://www.coloradoan.com/article/20120329/NEWS01/203290333/Colorado-bill-would-force-feds-sell-off-national-forests