As public pressure has mounted in recent weeks in favor of comprehensive reform of logging practices the timber industry and its allies in state government have stepped up their game.
At stake is where millions of dollars in brand-new revenue generated by a recently enacted lumber tax, will flow. Will it produce fundamental, science-based changes benefiting water quality, revitalized salmon fisheries, forest ecosystems and downstream communities? Or will it be lassoed by a timber industry coalition intent on making sure these funds will be spent to its liking, free of public meddling?
The regulatory agencies that enable Big Timber—and which have long dominated forest policymaking in the state—apparently believe they must create the appearance of reform, while in fact compromising the public’s ability to participate in the reform process and precluding transparency vital to ensuring its success!
On May 12 Forests Forever sent out an email alert describing the controversy taking shape. The alert set forth how funds from Assembly Bill (AB) 1492’s lumber tax are supposed to be used to determine scientifically what the comprehensive impacts of given logging operations will be and to ensure their efficient monitoring.
In recent weeks, however,industry players—and perhaps more importantly the agencies entrusted with regulating logging—have put forward several new pieces of legislation that together would siphon off upwards of $3 million in the first year alone. Part of their public-perception manipulation strategy includes funding the controlling body they call the "Effectiveness Monitoring Committee!"
Write to key decisionmakers today and demand that they stop this potential hijacking of taxpayer funds immediately!
For more background information click here.
FORESTS FOREVER Launches New Web Site! Our new storefront features an updated design with a simpler, cleaner look, handy drop-down menus, and faster loading times! Click here.
Advocacy groups letter to the governor
Forests Forever advocate Richard Gienger discusses the Effectiveness Monitoring Committee sham in his Spring 2014 "The Gienger Report." Go to "Now, for some Politics"
To read AB 875's latest amended version discussing the pilot projects and timeline for their completion click here.