SUPPORT COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE LAND ACQUISITION
The best way to protect lands in the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area
of Oregon and Washington is to acquire them from willing sellers.
Federal legislation that passed in 2000 gives the Forest Service a
three-year window from the date private land is offered for sale to
purchase such land from willing sellers. If the Forest Service
make a purchase offer within three years of the land being offered for
sale, the land will be rezoned to a less restrictive management class
that allows more development, logging and mining.
Since the 2000 legislation passed, 187 private sellers have
offered over 6,700 acres to the Forest Service for purchase. In
the last two years the Forest Service has acquired more than 1,600
acres of land, but many of the lands offered for sale are approaching
their three-year deadline. Several landowners have signed
one-year extensions. The Forest Service needs Congress to
appropriate $10 million dollars in FY 2005 to acquire these lands that
have been offered for sale and to protect them for future generations.
The Federation of Western Outdoor Clubs strongly encourages
Congress to appropriate $10 million dollars in FY 2005 to fund
acquisition of private lands in the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area.