|Published on September 17, 2004
© 2004- The Press Democrat
BYLINE: Kerry Benefield
COLUMN: Around the empire
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a bill Thursday that supporters hoped
would end years of legal wrangling between environmental and logging
interests over the management of Jackson State Demonstration Forest east
of Fort Bragg.
The bill, SB1648, authored by Sen. Wes Chesbro, D-Arcata, would have
created a citizens advisory committee with input on timber harvest plans,
in exchange for the resumption of limited logging.
The creation of the committee was opposed by timber industry officials
and cited by Schwarzenegger as a reason for vetoing the bill.
Schwarzenegger said the committee would not have had the professional
expertise to merit its authority.
Supported by the Sierra Club of California and other environmental
groups, the law would have paved the way for the state to harvest 20,000
to 25,000 trees a year at Jackson forest, bringing in $3
million to $5 million for the state.
But the state Department of Forestry and timber industry officials
opposed the bill, arguing that it would have given the advisory committee
too much power.