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Elliott State Forest Alternatives Project

Project Status

The Elliott State Forest Alternatives Project began in spring 2014 because of reduced Common School Fund timber revenues due to protected species policies and regulations. A technical analysis and public outreach phase of the project was completed in December 2014. During 2014 a range of feasible ownership, management, and transition alternatives were examined, and two reports were presented to the State Land Board (link below). The next phase of the project is to design the transition to a new business model that better meets the State Land Board’s trust obligation to schools.​ Currently, staff is working on due diligence as directed by the State Land Board for scenarios 1, 2, and 3 as referred to in the December 9, 2014 draft meeting minutes.

December 9, 2014 News Release​

December 9, 2014 State Land Board Meeting Draft Minutes​​​

Department of State Lands Project Executive Summary-12/3/2014​

Department of State Lands Project Report-12/3/2014​ (Large File for Downloading)

Evergreen Economics/LandVest Report-12/1/2014​ (Large File for Downloading)​

Outreach and Public Comment July to November 2014​

July 23, 2014 News Release​​

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Background

 
 
  • The 92,000-acre Elliott State Forest includes about 84,000 acres of Commons School Fund lands in Coos and Douglas counties in Southwestern Oregon.  
  • The forest was created in 1930 to provide long-term funding for Oregon’s K-12 public schools and is managed by the Department of Forestry.
  • Over time, timber harvests have been greatly reduced, due primarily to policies and regulations for protection of threatened species (northern spotted owl, marbled murrelet, and coastal coho salmon), resulting in net deficits from managing the Elliott. 
  • In 2013, loss from the Elliott was $3.8 million.  It was $1.8 million in 2014 and is projected to be breakeven over the next five years.
  • Draining money from the Common School Fund to maintain an asset threatens the trust responsibility of the State Land Board to school beneficiaries.​
See the timeline for additional information below.
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Timeline

May 2014 - Project kickoff.

June 2014 – Initial outreach and interagency technical workgroup set up.

July 2014 – First-round outreach meetings held with educational beneficiaries, conservation and land trust representatives, timber management interests, tribal governments, elected officials, economic and community development groups, and government agencies included a preliminary alternative business model concepts chart and summary.

August 2014 – An interagency workgroup advised a technical consultant​ (Evergreen Economics) on modeling different future managaement scenarios for the Elliott.  This work was compiled as a supplementary report to the DSL's December 9, 2014 report to the State Land Board. 

September 2014Draft alternative management approaches​​ were reviewed in second-round outreach work sessions.

October 8, 2014 - State Land Board Meeting​ at 3:00 to 6:00pm at Hales Performing Arts Center, SW     Oregon Community College, 1988 Newmark, North Bend, OR.

November 2014 – Alternative management approaches were refined and draft transition scenarios were developed based on public comment​ and outreach suggestions​.

December 9, 2014 – The Department of State Lands report and the Evergreen report​ were presented to the State Land Board.  The State Land Board instructed the Department of State Lands to complete due diligence on three possible transition scenarios with a focus on designing a process to "de-couple" the Common School Fund from timber harvesting at the Elliott.

January 2015 - Work to refine transition scenarios #1-#3.

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Public Comment

Comments have been received throughout the project and are posted here.  Comments received prior to 11/15/2014 are posted on the ESF Additional Information page.  To submit a public comment, please send an email to:  elliottproject@state.or.us​.

Comments 11/5/2014 through 12/31/2014​

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Contacts

For more information about this project, please contact:

John Potter  |   john.r.potter@state.or.us  |  503-569-8979

Stephanie Hallock  |  stephanie.hallock@state.or.us  |  503-428-4773

Julie Curtis  |  julie.curtis@state.or.us  |  503-986-5298​ 

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