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DNRC Headquarters
1539 Eleventh Ave. Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 444-2074 | Fax: (406) 444-2684
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With grizzly protection settlement ratified, DNRC timber program "back in business"

HELENA, Mont. –   Last week’s settlement agreement between the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation (DNRC) and several conservation groups over grizzly bear protections on state trust land brings much-needed certainty to future DNRC forest management plans, and puts workers back on the ground to resume six timber projects shut down a year ago by litigation.

“We’re glad to be back in business, protecting natural resources and putting revenue into the trust,” said DNRC Director John Tubbs. “This agreement works for everyone.”

The injunction on state trust land timber sales in the Coal Creek and Stillwater state forests, ordered on August 21, 2014, by U.S. District Court Judge Donald Malloy, halted two full timber sales and four partial sales involving an estimated 14 million board feet of timber and more than $2.5 million in potential revenue to school trust beneficiaries. Tubbs said those purchasers have been notified of the new agreement and told they can resume harvest activities.

“All sides worked hard on this settlement, which comes at a very good time for the wood products industry,” said Tubbs.

Several other timber projects in the planning phase were also halted by the injunction, including the proposed Stryker Basin timber project with a projected yield of eight million board feet. DNRC planned to offer that sale in 2015. Tubbs said DNRC field staff have resumed planning on that project and several others.