This week, we learned that the Stand Land Board will sell the Elliott State Forest for $220.8 million.
MORE ARTICLES ABOUT THE ELLIOTT FOREST ARE ON PORTLAND.INDYMEDIA HERE: [GOOGLE SEARCH LINK]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elliott_State_Forest [Wikipedia information on Elliott State Forest]
But this special place - our place - is in danger. For over a year, the State Land Board has been evaluating options to sell the Elliott. They believe they are legally obligated to maximize profits on the lands in their portfolio. Logging on the Elliott only maximizes profit for the state with aggressive practices that a federal court deemed non-compliant with the Endangered Species Act.
So, here we are. Contemplating selling off this amazing place - stuck between the proverbial rock and a hard place. OLCV members have written thousands of messages urging that the land stay public. But, as every day passes, we are more and more concerned that this special place will be sold to private interests.
Why do we think it is likely that the Elliott will be sold to a private interest - probably a timber company? That $220.8 million price tag. Rather than finding the highest bidder, the Land Board will evaluate all offers of that amount, whether it's from a logging company, a land trust, or even another public entity. But $220.8 million is a lot of money - and we all know who has a lot more money than conservation groups: big timber.
We have been working hard at OLCV and with our friends in the Oregon Conservation Network for years to find a common-good solution for the Elliott. The current plan for sale has us deeply troubled. We need your help in a multitude of ways to save this amazing place for future generations.
Elliott State Forest is a state forest in the Oregon Coast Range in Coos and Douglas counties, between Coos Bay and Reedsport. The first state forest established in Oregon, it is named after the state's first state forester Francis Elliott
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(e-mail repost from)
Christy Splitt, Development Director OLCV
Oregon League of Conservation Voters
133 SW 2nd Avenue Suite 200
Portland OR 97204 United States