The long-awaited revised forest plans for the Malheur, Umatilla and Wallowa-Whitman national forests will be released Friday.
Updating the current plans drafted in 1990, the new 15-year plan has the potential to support up to 2,820 jobs and $113.6 million in labor income annually, according to the Forest Service.
“We have been listening to diverse perspectives,” said Pacific Northwest Regional Forester Jim Peña. “The revised Forest Plans honor the many years of input provided by the public, local governments, states, tribes, federal agencies and other stakeholders. Together, we are working to make our forests more resilient to change while also supporting rural prosperity.”
The revised plans provide a framework for future site-specific decisions and have the potential to add 1,173 new jobs and $59.5 million in new income in the forest products, livestock and recreation sectors compared to the current plan, according to the Forest Service.
The plan could double the annual timber harvest from a recent average of 100 million board feet to 205 million board feet and maintains recent grazing levels. An additional 70,500 acres would be recommended for a wilderness designation.
A 60-day objection-filing period is scheduled to begin June 30 for people who provided substantive comments during the 2010 scoping period or the 2014 formal comment period. A 90-day objection-resolution period will follow.
After resolution of the objections, Peña will sign a final record of decision for the revised plan for each forest.
For more information, visit fs.usda.gov/goto/BlueMountainsPlanRevision.