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State Parks begins review of Upper Deschutes scenic plan


The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department said Friday it has begun a limited review of the administrative provisions within its Comprehensive Management Plan covering the lowest portion of the Upper Deschutes State Scenic Waterway.

The scenic waterway, designated in 1988, starts downstream of Wickiup Reservoir, and the last downstream mile is inside Bend’s Urban Growth Boundary.

The department agreed to conduct the review after the State Parks and Recreation Commission refused to amend one part of the rule earlier this year.

The amendment — requested by the Bend Park and Recreation District — would have allowed property owners to request to build bicycle/pedestrian bridges across the scenic waterway. The new review does not focus on any one aspect of management.

The current staff review will not change any rules, but will consider how well the administrative provisions work within the Bend Urban Growth Boundary, officials said.

In addition to department staff, the Upper Deschutes Advisory Group -will assist with the review, and includes: city, county, and federal officials, the park district, neighborhood associations along the scenic waterway, and recreation advocates interested in both river- and land-based recreation.

OPRD has hired Community Solutions of Central Oregon , a Bend nonprofit, to facilitate the meetings and review. The nonprofit will also collect broader public thoughts about rules along the lower section of the waterway through a web-based crowdsourcing initiative at as well as a series of public forums designed to engage homeowners directly.

More information about the review is online at .

The review will result in a report to OPRD Director Lisa Sumption in March . After receiving the report, Sumption will decide whether a new round of formal rulemaking will start.

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