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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Make your comments on the Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests Forest Plan Revision!

Here's your chance to comment on the (in our opinion) inadequate provison for new Wilderness in the OWNF Plan!

For example, for the Pasayten Rim roadless area (on p. 29) they recommend only 9400 acres out of 41,300 (23%) for Wilderness, with the exclusions based on "heli-ski permit landing spots, wildland urban interface, mining claims, and snowmobile use near Harts Pass."

Email comments to:

Or attend one of the meetings or webinars listed below!

Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests
Forest Plan Revision
Release Date:  July 8, 2011
Debbie Kelly, Forest Plan Revision Public Affairs Lead, 509-826-3275
Roland Giller, Okanogan-Wenatchee NF Public Affairs Officer, 509-664-9314 Franklin Pemberton, Colville National Forest Public Affairs Officer, 509-684-7177

Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests
Announce Plan Revision Public Scoping Meetings
The Forest Service has scheduled a series of public meetings in July and August to share information about the Draft Proposed Actions for Forest Plan Revision for the Colville and the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests.  The Draft Proposed Actions were released on June 30, 2011, initiating a 60-day public comment period that ends August 29, 2011.  
The public meetings are intended to help the public become familiar with the proposed management of the Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee Forests, said Margaret Hartzell, Team Leader for the Forest Plan Revision Team.   “Our goal is to introduce people to the proposed action and help them understand the information so they can formulate their comments” Hartzell said. “These public meetings are an important part of the ongoing collaboration between the Forest Service and the public in the development of these forest plans.”
Forest Service representatives will provide a brief presentation about the proposed action and the public comment process, followed by a short question and answer session.  Before and after the presentation, tables will be set up in an open house format to provide an individual opportunity to learn more about specific topics of public interest, and to have one-on-one conversations with Forest Service representatives.  At the Colville, Okanogan and Wenatchee public meetings, small group discussion sessions will also be provided.
Topics highlighted during the open house include:  Vegetation Management, Access (including motorized and non-motorized recreation), Recommended Wilderness, Wildlife Habitat, and the Forest Planning Process. “While these public meetings are focused on providing information, we will accept written comments turned in during the meeting,” said Hartzell.

Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee Forest Plan Revision
Public Meeting-Open House Schedule

Colville, WA, Saturday, July 16
9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Community College, Institute for Extended Learning Center, Colville Center, 985 South Elm, Colville, WA 99114

Republic, WA, Thursday, July 28
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Republic Elementary School Multi-purpose Room, 30306 E. Highway 20, Republic, WA

Okanogan, WA, Saturday, July 309:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Okanogan County Fairgrounds, Agriplex Building, 175 Rodeo Trail Road, Okanogan, WA 98840
Spokane, WA, Monday, August 1,5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.,  Spokane County Public Library, North Branch, 44 E. Hawthorne Rd
Spokane, WA 99218

Newport, WA, Tuesday, August 2,
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Newport High School Auditorium, 1400 West Fifth Street, Newport, WA 99156
Wenatchee, WA, Saturday, August 69:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Wenatchee Convention Center, 201 North Wenatchee Avenue, Wenatchee, WA 98801 (Next to the Coast Wenatchee Center Hotel).
Yakima, WA Wednesday, August 10,
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Yakima Convention Center, 10 North 8th St, Yakima WA 98901-2515

Cle Elum, WA Thursday, August 11

5:00 p.m. -7:00 p.m., Cle Elum Centennial Center, 719 E. 3rd Street, Cle Elum, WA 98922

Seattle, WA Saturday, August 13,
10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m., Magnuson Park, Mountaineers Program Center, 7700 Sand Point Way N.E., Seattle, WA 98115

Two Toll-Free “Lunch Time” Webinars
—will also be held Tuesday, August 9 and Thursday, August 18 from noon to 1:30 p.m. to provide an opportunity for those people who may not be able to attend one of the other public meetings, or would like to participate in another review opportunity.   More information will be announced via media release and posted on the project website when details become available.

Forest Plans provide broad direction to the Forest Service about how to manage the natural resources on national forest lands. “Much like county zoning plans, they allow certain activities and uses in certain areas and set the sideboards for those activities and uses,” explained Hartzell.  “Comments provided at this stage in the plan development will be used to help us determine the scope of the environmental analysis and to develop a range of alternatives,” she added.
Comments are most helpful if received by August 29, 2011. Written comments should be addressed to the Colville and Okanogan-Wenatchee Forest Plan Revision Team, Okanogan Valley Office, 1240 Second Ave. South, Okanogan, WA, 98840.   Comments can also be sent via email to:   Comments generated by the Draft Proposed Action are used to develop alternatives analyzed in an environmental impact statement.
To view or download the Draft Proposed Actions, and/or to access maps and other informational materials, visit the project website at: or call Debbie Kelly, Forest Plan Revision Team Public Affairs contact at (509) 826-3275.

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