The first of four sets of Community Collaboration Workshops for the Blue Mountains Forest Plan revision begin in June.

These first workshops will explore what is appreciated about the Blue Mountains, what's important about them, and the roles of the forests.

The John Day meeting is June 30.

The Malheur, Umatilla and Wallowa-Whitman national forests, collectively referred to as the Blue Mountains National Forests, are just getting started on the Forest Plan revision effort.

According to Dave Schmitt, team leader for the four-year revision effort, "We want to work with everyone who is interested in the forest plans and who will be affected by them, and we are committed to effective collaboration. We are starting our collaborative effort by holding workshops in eight communities across the Blues in June and early July."

The workshop series will continue over the next year or so. The Forest Service will work together with local communities, state and federal agencies, and tribes across the Blue Mountains to develop a vision for the future management of the area, create the building blocks that will be used in the new forest plans, identify the things in the current forest plans that are not working, and craft revision proposals.

The workshops will run from 6 to 9 p.m. The first 45 minutes of each workshop will be in open house format with presentations and activities beginning at about 7 pm.

The meetings are:

•Pendleton: June 15, convention center, 1601 Westgate

•Dayton, Wash.: June 16, Columbia County Fairgrounds

•La Grande: June 22, Eastern Oregon University, Hoke Hall, Room 309

•Enterprise: June 23, Wallowa County Fairgrounds, Cloverleaf Hall

•Burns: June 29, Harney County Senior & Community Services Center

•John Day: June 30, Malheur National Forest, Supervisor's Office

•Heppner: July 7, Heppner Ranger District, Umatilla National Forest

•Baker City: July 8, Baker County Fairgrounds, Extension Building 2

The area covered by the forest plan revisions is about 5.3 million acres of national forestlands in northeast Oregon, southeast Washington, and west-central Idaho. The revision will also address a portion of the Ochoco National Forest administered by the Malheur. Forest plans provide broad direction to the U.S. Forest Service about how to manage all of the resources on national forestlands.

For more information, contact Tami Paulsen, public affairs specialist at (541) 523-1332 or Dave Schmitt, team leader, at (541) 523-1248.

Visit the revision Web site at www.fs.fed.us/r6/uma/blue_mtn_planrevision/ for up-to-date information about any changes to this schedule.

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