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Deschutes, Ochoco NF set Forest Plan ‘listening sessions’


The public will have an opportunity to discuss the Northwest Forest Plan and the future management of the Deschutes and Ochoco national forests and the Crooked River National Grassland during a pair of listening sessions to be held during the last week of April.

The Forest Service will host a listening session from 6 pm to 8 pm on Monday, April 27 at the Bowman Museum Annex, 246 N. Main Street in Prineville, to provide some general information about the process of Forest Plan Revision, and to seek public feedback on how best to proceed in the upcoming planning effort.

The Deschutes listening session will be held on Tuesday, April 28, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Deschutes National Forest Office, 63095 Deschutes Market Road in Bend.

The listening sessions will briefly review the Northwest Forest Plan and the national forests’ Land and Resource Management Plan, discuss how science will inform future planning and provide an overview of forest planning processes and concepts.

Participants will then break into small groups to brainstorm ideas in response to broad questions related to forest planning, public engagement, and science.

“We know these national forest lands matter to people. As we review the Northwest Forest Plan and are in the very early stages of considering revising our Forest Plan, we want to hear from people about what is important to them about our national forest’s future and how they want to be engaged in that future,” said John Allen, Deschutes Forest Supervisor.

“We are very early in this process and just starting to consider revising our Land and Resource Management Plans for the Ochoco National Forest and the Crooked River National Grassland,” said Ochoco Forest Supervisor Stacey Forson. “We would like to offer a general overview of where this process is headed over the coming years, and ask for ideas on how best to engage with the public as we begin this journey together.”

A Land and Resource Management Plan, commonly called a Forest Plan, is a comprehensive document that provides broad direction for Forest Service land management activities.

The current Land and Resource Management Plan for the Deschutes National Forest was published in 1990 and amended in 1994 by the Northwest Forest Plan.

The current Forest Plans for the Ochoco National Forest and Crooked River National Grassland were finalized in 1989.

Plan revision offers an opportunity to reflect on what needs for change may have arisen since that time, such as new science and new public interests, and how best to incorporate them into a management plan.

The Forest Service wants to emphasize that plan revision for the Deschutes National Forest is not immediately beginning and this listening session is just an initial opportunity for the public to discuss future management. Plan revision is a long-term process that takes several years and the public will have many additional opportunities to be engaged in discussion with the Forest Service.

For more information about the listening session in Bend, people can contact Susan Skakel at 541-383-5563. For more information on the Prineville session, contact Ochoco National Forest Public Affairs Officer Patrick Lair at (541) 416-6647 or

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