O&C lands

Image of snowy mountain with trees in the foreground
Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, BLM

As competing court rulings play out over the future of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, a group of western Oregon counties is calling for the state’s congressional delegation to swap timber land protected within the monument for other federally managed land.

The proposal came from the Association of O&C Counties (AOCC), a group of Oregon counties that encompass more than 2.4 million acres of land largely overseen by the Bureau of Land Management.

Amelia Templeton/EarthFix

Nearly a year ago, the last commercial sawmill operating in southern Oregon’s Josephine County shut its doors, laying off 85 workers. Now, the Rough and Ready Lumber Company is gearing up to re-open, with the help of financing facilitated by the government and conservation groups.

M.O. Stevens/Wikimedia Commons

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden pledges to do everything he can to get his proposed timber plan passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama this year. He’s gathered support from key players in both the timber industry and the environmental community, and he’s painting opponents as uncompromising extremists.

But, hold-outs on both sides say splitting the baby in half isn’t the wisest choice.


Oregon Senator Ron Wyden has unveiled a bill to balance competing demands on more than two million acres of federal forest land in the state. So far, opinions differ on whether he’s found an approach that can resolve this long-standing tug-of-war.