OLYMPIA - The public is invited to share ideas about the future of the Teanaway Community Forest at an open house from 5:30 to 8 p.m., June 26, in Cle Elum.
The event will be held in the Swauk Teanaway Grange, 1361 W. Ballard Hill Road.
The Washington departments of Natural Resources (DNR) and Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) are developing a management plan, which is due by June 30, 2015, with significant input from a community-based advisory committee. The open house is one of many opportunities for the public to provide input to the advisory committee.
After brief opening remarks, which begin at 5:30 p.m., the public will have an opportunity to comment on topics such as watershed protection, working lands, recreation, and fish and wildlife in the Teanaway. DNR and WDFW will have staff members available to discuss each subject. Several members of the Teanaway Community Forest Advisory Committee also plan to attend the open house.
Additional information about the community forest, including how to comment online, can be found at www.dnr.wa.gov/teanaway.
Washington's first state-managed community forest
The Teanaway Community Forest is located at the headwaters of the Yakima Basin watershed. Its acquisition in 2013 was the largest, single land transaction by Washington state in 45 years and reflects more than a decade of collaboration involving many organizations and individuals. The property is Washington's first state-managed community forest under the terms of legislation enacted in 2011. That law established a model for managing state trust lands that empowers communities to partner with DNR to purchase forests that support local economies and public recreation.
Acquisition of the property was a key step in implementing the Yakima Basin Integrated Plan, an initiative developed by a coalition of public and private organizations to safeguard the basin's water supply, restore fisheries, conserve habitat, preserve working lands, and enhance recreational opportunities.
The forest will be managed through a partnership between DNR and WDFW, with input from the local community and interested stakeholders.