Montana Wilderness News

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Editorial: Forest bill a win-win situation

Bozeman Daily Chronicle
Sunday, December 20, 2009

Montana Sen. Jon Tester’s “Forest Jobs and Recreation Act” may not have the word “wilderness” in its title, but it’s proving to be just as much of a lightning rod as any that have included that word in the past.

Tester’s bill is the result of an unprecedented compromise crafted by a coalition of industry and environmental interests. It would set aside some 677,000 acres of land as wilderness – mostly in Southwest Montana – while mandating logging on some 7,000 acres of Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest land per year for the next 10 years.

Letter: Home-grown solution is best

Helena Independent Record
Rosalie Robson
Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sen. Tester’s Forest Jobs and Recreation Act is the best solution to forest management our state has seen in years. The bill brings all kinds of regular, everyday Montanans together to find homegrown solutions to our forest issues. The process and the resulting bill represent good and reasoned efforts in communication and cooperation, which is sorely needed in our public discourse.

Tester seeks administration's support for Montana forest bill

Great Falls Tribune
Ledyard King
Friday, December 18, 2009

WASHINGTON — Citing precedent and cost, the Obama administration says it cannot yet endorse a bill by Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., that seeks to reshape Western Montana's national forests by striking a balance among timber, recreation and environmental interests.

Editorial: Standard View: Culture change does not come easy

Montana Standard
Thursday, December 17, 2009

U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., is remarkably unfazed that a high-ranking federal official expressed serious concerns about his Forest Jobs and Recreation Act.

At the bill's first committee hearing in Washington Dec. 17, Agriculture Department Undersecretary Harris Sherman balked at a main provision of the bill that mandates logging or thinning on 7,000 acres of the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest every year for the next 10 years.

Schweitzer endorses Tester's jobs, wilderness bill

Associated Press
Thursday, December 17, 2009

HELENA - The governor says he is backing U.S. Sen. Jon Tester's plan to both create more wilderness and mandate more logging.

Gov. Brian Schweitzer, a Democrat, submitted the testimony in advance of Thursday's hearing on the bill in the U.S. Senate. He says it will create good jobs with more logging.

Tester's bill would add 600,000 acres of Montana wilderness, and set aside specific areas for recreation and trails. It is jointly written by logging outfits and environmental groups.

Tester bill's hearing can be viewed online

Helena Independent Record
Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Montanans will have an opportunity to watch Thursday's Senate hearing on Sen. Jon Tester's Forest Jobs and Recreation Act.
Thursday's hearing, the first for the bill, is scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m. Montana time. Follow the link in this story online at to see the hearing. If it begins late, Web viewers may see a blank screen until it begins.

Also on Wednesday, Gov. Brian Schweitzer sent the Senate subcommittee a letter in support of the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act.

Opinion: Tester forest bill a good deal for Montana

Billings Gazette
Shane Colton
Saturday, December 5, 2009

Montana has long been famous for its blue-ribbon trout streams, premier hunting and access opportunities for the public. For most Montana families, hunting and fishing on public lands and waterways is an important part of their outdoor heritage.

Our way of life here is unique, and people from around the world come to experience what we enjoy in our backyards.

Tester's wilderness bill: the right thing

Bozeman Daily Chronicle
Conrad Anker
Friday, December 4, 2009

Etymology: the history of a linguistic form shown by tracing its development since its earliest recorded occurrence in the language where it is found, by tracing its transmission from one language to another.

Opinion: Forest Jobs Act embodies what Montanans value most

Great Falls Tribune
Gerry Jennings
Monday, November 23, 2009

As a Montanan, I feel lucky to live in a state where everyone is a neighbor and no one is too busy to lend a hand. As a Montanan deeply committed to conservation, I am also lucky to live in a state that not only has spectacular wildlands, but also has a legacy of protecting those wild places.

Sadly, for the past two decades, both our tradition of cooperation and our legacy of wildland protection have been at a stalemate due to conflicts over forest management.

Opinion: Forty years is long enough

Montana Standard
Dave Lewis
Tuesday, November 17, 2009

In 1969 I was working for the Forest Service and was sent to Dillon to be the budget officer on the Beaverhead National Forest. My wife fell in love with the town immediately and the fishing was and is the best. There was even a sawmill with jobs! What could go wrong?

Suddenly the peace and quiet was broken. The forest became embroiled almost immediately in a Forest Resource Planning effort that turned into a rock fight between wilderness advocates and those who believed in timber management, including logging. Forty years ago and I can still remember meetings that went nowhere.

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