Oregon Natural Resource Industries Stand Against the ODF 2023 HCP
An HCP is supposed to protect endangered species and fend off Environmentalists lawsuits. Politicians and Bureaucrats have corrupted the intent and are using it to shut down our private, state, and federal forests without proving that the protected species benefit.
Case and point; over 3 decades, hundreds of thousands of acres have been set-aside for the spotted owl but their population is still decreasing.
HCP’s do not protect these species without proper forest management.
· Clatsop County will lose 34% of their timber revenue for 70 years. Approximately 30% of Tillamook’s general fund is supported by timber revenue each year.
· Lane County includes 2,915,000 acres, of which 85% are forest land, and 58% are public forest land.
· 50% of Polk County is Forest. Over 83,000 people live in Polk County, all of them will be negatively impacted.
· Family-wage jobs are the cornerstone of a healthy and sustainable community. Massive job losses due to the HCP shutting down over 50% of state forests adds to the reduction in tax revenue.
· Reduces timber harvest revenue to the point it will make Oregon Department of Forestry insolvent – they won’t have enough money to keep their lights on.
· The reduction in timber harvest revenue from the 70 HCP, the Private Forest Accord’s 50 year HCP on private timberlands, the over 1 million acres burned in the Labor Day fires, and the increasing forest fire costs, pose a real threat to the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF), rural Oregon communities and Oregon’s economy.
· A new report shows a 34 percent reduction in harvest levels from what was previously represented, and will not increase over the life of the 70-year plan. We already knew this plan would devastate rural communities, but an additional 34% reduction in harvest and revenue will have far worse results for 70 years.
THE NUMBERS ARE IN - 57% of our state forests will be shut-down by ODF’s Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP). That‘s an additional 34% decrease in harvest volumes.
Over 220 public services including law enforcement, emergency services, schools and much more will will lose critical funding, 512 special taxing districts will be devastated, let alone job loss and the ripple effects on our rural communities.
We must manage our forests for the health of our forests and the economies of the Counties that are dependent upon the timber tax dollars that provide basic services to their citizens.
This 70-year plan will reduce timber harvest levels to the point of making Oregon’s Department of Forestry insolvent, meaning they won’t receive enough timber revenue to keep their lights on, let alone pay for fighting fires.
Whether you’re a logger, mill worker, forester, community leader, business owner, rural Oregonian, or just plain care about the future of Oregon's forests and rural communities, the message is the same – if this draft HCP is approved this November, the consequences will be detrimental not only to the forest sector, but to the counties community services and all the businesses who provide goods and services in the 14 counties who rely on timber revenue for their livelihoods.
Logging jobs are generational, they are a source of pride, and the skills required to properly manage these magnificient forests need to be passed down to our younger generations.
We rely on these forests to enable us to build the very homes we live in and the air we breath. We must protect those who manage this important resource and the services that this product provides Oregon.
These forests are grown and managed meeting the tightest regulations and they are the envy of countries around the world.
*70 year HCP
*53% of state timberland will be impacted by the HCP but some of the timberland will still be able to be harvested.
*34% reduction in timber harvest levels. *Currently we are allowed to harvest 260mmbf but the HCP reduced that by 34% down to 165mmbf annually.
When we reduce timber harvests, we increase the number of seasonal wildfires. Unmanaged forestry practices are the root cause of the large, hard to contain wildfires.
If the HCP passes not only will we lose famiy wage jobs and tax dollars, we will lose access to these forests, they will become over-grown and insect infested and disease will overcome our beautiful trees.
After wildfires, the stump and remaining dead trees are left where they stand. New trees are not replanted. The damaged trees are left to rot. The timber companies have lost their profits, and they are not able to amend the land that the wildfires have destroyed.
Our forests are a crop that requires constant attention and care. We must not let the Board of Forestry approve this HCP, its a 70 year mistake.
by Tasha Webb
I've spent year in these messes with them. There aren't words to describe the pain and distress they go through.
They did't just loose a house.
They've run desperately in fear, lucky to get out alive. Leaving behind animals, identification, everything. They have just a moment.
They drive thru flames.
They land in a hotel with nothing but the clothes on their back. Surrounded by their entire community who lost everything too.
When they get back, hoping some stuff didn't burn, they find it all did. And they sift. For anything. A coffee cup. A ring. Anything.
They start piling the rubble onto tarps and dragging it. Taking free bottled water and weird donated t shirts.
They file paperwork. No response from the county. Years before they can rebuild. Some will never get permission to rebuild on their land. Most I met did not have fire insurance.
Their post office is gone. Their school is gone. Their stores are gone. Their town is leveled into rubble.
So many time I talk to them, even years later, and they drift off.
Fancy city people come in and move property lines for new water systems. The neighbors divide into political camps over who wants the fancy new water and the fancy new town ideas and the other camp who wants to rebuild what they had and not become a mini Sisters.
They fight over who took too much donated hamburger. Someone who didn't lose a home, but just a barn and property gets a free tiny home and now the whole town plots against them. People come in with disaster relief, and people from outside the community who lost nothing take advantage and take half.
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