Letter to the editor: Are you sick of seeing large, ugly clearcuts?


Are you tired of seeing large, ugly clearcuts where once there was beautiful forest? The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is required by state law to manage our public lands to produce money for public schools and universities.

DNR could raise these funds from selling their plantation forests, but instead, in just two years, current Commissioner Hilary Franz and the other members have reduced the 7% remaining of Washington’s irreplaceable older legacy forests, to just 3%.

The next commissioner of public lands will determine if there will be any left by the end of their term. It appears there are three Democrats running for this position alongside two Republicans. But don’t let Republicans in Democratic clothing fool you.

Former state Sen. Van de Wege has a poor environmental record and has voted with Big Timber repeatedly.

Robert DePoe works at DNR now and is endorsed by Franz, meaning he plans no change in policy. Every Democratic caucus and large environmental group has endorsed Dave Upthegrove for commissioner of public lands.

All the other candidates are taking Big Timber money to fund their campaigns. Upthegrove refuses to, and pledges to protect older legacy forests. The August primary will seal this race. Please vote.


Natasha Hays