Planning Process for the Malheur, Umatilla, and Wallowa-Whitman

These 3 forests are still operating under a 1990 LRMP. And it may stay with that old plan for a while.

Blue Mountains forest proposal plays to a tough crowd in Grant County

Subhead: “Groups are honing their comments on the proposed Blue Mountains forest plan.” Which means nobody likes it. 1,400 pages!

4 thoughts on “Planning Process for the Malheur, Umatilla, and Wallowa-Whitman”

  1. Wasn’t aware that these three forests had “united” into a common FP.
    Back in the early 80s when we here in R1 were straining to put together the first FPs, the three north Idaho forests of R1 (IPNF, Clearwater, Nez Perce) decided to get together and see what common interests and FP decisions/alternatives we might have, in that we were totally in Idaho and to some degree different in our political considerations (from a state perspective).
    OMG! After a few months of coordinating meetings in Moscow, Idaho, between the three forest planners (myself from IPNF), we heard through the grapevine that the Regional Planner was furious with us. He was concerned that his leadership and direction from Missoula was somehow being undercut, and that we might “go our own way”.
    It became a nightmare trying to dispell this stupid attitude, and the R1 Planner (will go unnamed) got his way.
    What we were trying to do was look at common boundaries and management issues and approach these in a coordinated manner. It made lots of sense. But he didn’t see it that way.
    In summary, I am pleased to see that R6 is not afraid of three forests cooperating and coordinating in hopes of a better product.
    Ah, the good ole days! I should confess that the flack and horrible attitude that we had to deal with because of this hastened my decision to “early out” from an agency that I once loved.

  2. Ed,
    Good comment. Anyone want to comment on the “Iron Triangle” name, or how egos often trump logic?
    John Nesbitt

  3. When everybody hated it, that used to mean that we had gotten the balance about right.

    I think this regional planner usually won (I was in R1 on the Helena then). Keep in mind that at the time there was also a lot of Washington Office oversight of how the first NFMA plans were being developed. (Similar to where we are with the new planning regulations – though these forests are using the old ones.)

    In an era of federal budget problems, and a stated goal of more efficient planning, having every unit rolling its own doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. This situation seems to call for both combining units for planning efforts and substantial national leadership and oversight.

    • “One-size-fits-all” solutions rarely follow site-specific science. Then again, it would be much more “efficient”, if we could streamline some of the process. That is where consensus needs to step up and decide on some “standard” trade-offs” that we can all live with. We need to show that the 3rd “C-word”, compromise, is best for all. Sadly, some people with lawyers just aren’t “progressive” enough to accept any other compromise but their own, sitting in front of a Judge. “Sue and settle” (from both sides) needs to go bye-bye.


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