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Home arrow Opinion arrow Brush Beat for February 7, 2014

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Brush Beat for February 7, 2014

Brush Beat for February 7, 2014

Forest Service plans meetings on forest plans revision

The U.S. Forest Service has scheduled a series of public meetings starting in mid-March to unveil a draft environmental impact statement that examines a proposed long-term management plan for the three national forests in the Blue Mountains: Wallowa-Whitman, Umatilla and Malheur.

Meetings planned in the tri-county area:

•  March 20, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Cloverleaf Hall, 668 N.W. First St., Enterprise

 • March 25, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Baker City Community Events Center, 2600 East St.

• March 26, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Blue Mountain Conference Center, 404 12th St., La Grande

• March 27, 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., Halfway Lions Hall, 235 Lion St., Halfway

 The draft EIS will be released to the public on March 14, the start of a 90-day comment period.

 The three national forests have been working on the management plan for several years.

 Each of the forests has a separate management plan; the Wallowa-Whitman’s dates to 1990. 

 Management plans — typically known as “forest plans” — describe broad strategies for managing national forests but don’t include specific projects such as timber sales, grazing allotments or road closures.

 Although the potential effects for all three forests are being studied under a single EIS, each forest will have a separate management plan.

Federal day-use sites are free for use next weekend

Federal day-use recreation sites will not charge fees during Presidents Day weekend, Feb. 15 through 17.

This is the second free weekend scheduled this year for Forest Service recreation sites across Oregon and Washington.

The fee waiver does not apply to sno-parks, however; permits are still required in those areas, including Anthony Lakes ski area.

Other fee waiver days and weekends this year include National Trails Day, June 7; National Get Outdoors Day, June 14; and National Public Lands Day, Sept. 27.

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