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The Elliott State Forest was established northeast of Coos Bay in 1930 as Oregon's first state forest. Most of the 91,000 acre forest is a
Common School Fund land asset overseen by the State Land Board and managed by the Department of State Lands. More Elliott history.
Since 2019, DSL and Oregon State University have been working together to explore transforming the Elliott into a publicly owned state research forest. The Land Board in December 2020 confirmed the Elliott's future as a research forest and directed details to be finalized over the next two years. Elliott State Research Forest Project Timeline.
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The State Land Board voted in 2017 to keep the Elliott State Forest in public ownership, directing the Department of State Lands to move forward with work to achieve the Board's vision for the Elliott, which includes:
The Land Board also directed DSL to seek an HCP from the federal agencies responsible for enforcing the federal Endangered Species Act. The purpose of an HCP is to establish clear boundaries for management and harvest on the forest in compliance with the Act and to ensure conservation of at-risk species such as salmon, spotted owls, and marbled murrelet.
Dec. 2020 - The Elliott State Research Forest Proposal was presented to the State Land Board. The Land Board affirmed the Elliott State Forest's future as a research forest and directed continued collaboration and engagement to finalize remaining details.
Oct. – Nov. 2020 - Approximately 1,700 comments were submitted on the draft OSU research forest proposal.
Dec. 2019 – An update on progress was presented to the Land Board. The Elliott State Research Forest Advisory Committee also delivered a unanimous statement to the Board recommending that work continue. The Land Board directed DSL to continue work to explore transforming the Elliott into a publicly owned state research forest.
Jan. – Dec. 2019 - DSL and OSU launched an exploratory process. DSL convened an Elliott State Research Forest Advisory Committee, and OSU established an exploratory committee within its College of Forestry. DSL and OSU engaged the public and various stakeholders in conversation. The research forest concept was incorporated into the in-progress habitat conservation planning process.
Dec. 2018 – The Land Board directed DSL and OSU to begin exploring the Elliott State Research Forest concept.
May 2017 – The Land Board voted to keep the Elliott in public ownership and directed DSL to move forward with a public ownership project for the forest.
Learn more about the project.
July 2012 - A lawsuit over endangered species affects harvest levels and significantly reduces revenue. The Elliott begins to cost rather than contribute to the Common School Fund, with maintenance costs, legal fees, and other expenses adding up to millions over subsequent years. 1955 – The state began actively managing the Elliott. Timber harvest revenue goes to the Common School Fund and covers the cost of forest management. 1930 – The Elliott State Forest was established as Oregon's first state forest.
1927 – President Calvin Coolidge signed a bill authorizing the exchange of Common School Fund lands for a large block of land from the Siuslaw National Forest – what would become the Elliott State Forest.
1859 – The US Congress granted Oregon nearly 3.4 million acres of land upon statehood for the purpose of funding Oregon's K-12 public schools.
OSU Elliott State Research Forest Website. (Research forest proposal background, OSU Exploratory Committee Roster, details about the Elliott State Research Forest Science Advisory Panel, etc.)
Apply for a firewood cutting permitCurrent fire restrictionsMap of general forest ownershipMap of geo-referenced forest ownership
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