ODF invites public input on proposed land acquisitions in the Gilchrist State Forest, kicking off a 60-day comment period on November 5, 2013. The process is two-part: a 60-day public comment period that will run from November 5, 2013 through January 3, 2014, and a public hearing on December 5, 2013 in Klamath Falls. Located 45 miles south of Bend, adjacent to U.S. Highway 97, 43,000 acres of the Gilchrist State Forest were acquired by ODF and dedicated in 2010. Proposed acquisitions would add nearly 29,000 acres, about 25,000 of those owned by The Conservation Fund and about 3,000 acres by Central Oregon Land Holdings. In 2010, when the Gilchrist was dedicated, ODF partnered with The Conservation Fund to arrange a short-term purchase of the additional land, with the understanding that ODF would buy from them when funds were available. Those funds include $1.98 million in Oregon Lottery-backed bonds, approved by the Oregon Legislature in 2011, $3 million from a federal Forest Legacy Program grant, and $5.2 million in general bonds approved by the Legislature in 2013.
Learn more about the proposed acquisition and the Gilchrist State Forest