Urgent - Small Woodland Owners Grant Opportunity Deadline Reminder, Douglas County Commissioner Tim Freeman Re-Elected to Eighth Term as President of AOCC

Southwest Oregon's Fish, Farm & Forestry District

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Senator David Brock Smith
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Hello Friends,

Our small forest landowners are important to our communities and I wanted to send out a quick reminder and an update!


Grant Deadline Reminder for Small Woodland Landowners - December 31st

Our Senate District 1 has a large number of Small Woodland landowners. The Oregon Small Woodlands Association is a critical partner with these landowners in our state. As you may remember, I was able to draft and pass HB2161 in the last Legislative Session, which increases the value of small forestland owner forest conservation tax credit by increasing certified stumpage value by 25 percent.

I would like to thank Tami Jo Braz, Communications and Membership Chair for the Douglas Small Woodlands Association for the recent reminder of this grant opportunity from the PFA. 

The Grant Program is open for grant applications. Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on December 31, 2023. Click Here to learn more and apply. 


Douglas County Commissioner Tim Freeman  Re-Elected to Eighth Term as President of AOCC

When I served as a County Commissioner, I had the privilege to also serve on the Association of O&C Counties Board of Directors. (Please see the link for more information) I had the pleasure of serving on the AOCC Board when Commissioner Freeman was first elected President of the association.

As you can see above, AOCC incorporates 18 of Oregon's 36 Counties. Their work is critically important, as is their advocacy for the obligated funding to the counties for services to their residents. I sincerely appreciate the Leadership of AOCC President Freeman, Vice President Coos County Commissioner Bob Main, Treasurer Polk County Commissioner Craig Pope and the 15 County Commissioner Board Members for their incredible work. I also want to thank President Freeman and the AOCC Board Members for allowing me to participate and be part of the discussion during their Annual Meeting last Friday in Salem. 

From Douglas County Board of Commissioners Press Release:

December 19, 2023

Commissioner Freeman Re-Elected to Eighth Term as President of AOCC

(Douglas County, Ore) – Douglas County is pleased to announce that Commissioner Tim Freeman has been re-elected for his eighth term as the President of the Association of O&C Counties (AOCC). The AOCC unanimously re-elected its leaders for 2023-24 at the AOCC annual meeting held on Friday, December 15, 2023, at the Grand Hotel in Salem, Oregon. In addition to Commissioner Freeman, Polk County Commissioner, Craig Pope was re-elected as Secretary/Treasurer and Coos County Commissioner, Bob Main was re-elected as Vice President. This meeting also marks the end of the first year for the new Executive Director, Doug Robertson.
“It is truly an honor to be re-elected once again as President of the AOCC. I am thankful for the continued support of my fellow AOCC members, who trust me in leading this crucially important work.” Freeman said. “Together with my colleagues and the staff at AOCC, we will continue to work hard to secure solutions to manage our unique congressionally designated lands.”

AOCC represents the unique O&C timberlands in 18 western Oregon counties, the 18 counties host 2.1 million acres of O&C timberlands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). AOCC advocates for sustained yield management of O&C timberlands, as required by federal law under the O&C Act, to protect and support jobs and local
economies, county services, and healthy timberlands.

During its annual meeting, AOCC members were presented with an update from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Oregon State Director, Barry Bushue regarding O&C timberland management, timber sales, fire salvage, reforestation efforts, and some of the challenges facing the Agency in 2024. One of those challenges centered around filling key positions within the Department of Interior that have been vacated by retirements and employee movement.

Roseburg BLM District Manager Heather Whitman was among several staff members in attendance and reported on activities within the local Roseburg District. Christiana Woods, the new O&C State Forester also reported on proposed activities in 2024 including volume and value estimates that could impact payments to O&C Counties. Next on the agenda
was a report from AOCC’s Washington DC Representative on activities and proposed Legislation including the status of the Secure Rural Schools Program which expired on September 30th of this year.

President Freeman then introduced staff members from the Congressional Offices of Oregon US Representatives Lori Chavez DeRemer, Val Hoyle, and Cliff Bentz. The guest speaker for the annual meeting was Travis Joseph, the Executive Director of The American Forest
Resource Council (AFRC).

The meeting concluded with a detailed presentation from Dominic Carollo, the Association’s
General Council, on the current litigation and the joint effort with AFRC to get the O&C lawsuit, originally filed against the 2016 BLM Resource Management Plan, accepted, and will ultimately be ruled on by the US Supreme Court.

The 1937 O&C Act is widely regarded as the first Congressional conservation act. It regulates the management of the Federal timber resource. The O&C Act signaled an end to the cut-and-run policies in the early years of the 20th century. By requiring management under the principle of Sustained Yield, timber harvest cannot outpace the annual growth of the forest, resulting in a perpetual supply of timber while concurrently providing quality habitat for wildlife, watershed protection, and recreational opportunities for the public. Judge Leon's decision not only reaffirms the principles and requirements of the O&C Act, but also provides the foundation to create new job opportunities throughout the entire economic sector. In addition, Sustained Yield management will provide much needed revenue to fund vital
County services such as the Sheriff’s Office, 911 Communications, Senior Services, Veteran Services, Public Works infrastructure projects and public health programs. For more information on AOCC click here: http://www.oandc.org/. 

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As always, thank you for the privilege and honor to work for you in the Oregon State Senate. Be safe and God Bless you, your family and your neighbor. 


Yours Truly, 

David Brock Smith

Senator David Brock Smith

Together, We Will Build a Better Oregon

Senator David Brock Smith

Senate District 1
Curry, Coos, and Douglas Counties
Southwest Oregon’s Fish, Farm, and Forestry District.
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1701
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE, S-316, Salem, Oregon 97301
Email: Sen.DavidBrockSmith@oregonlegislature.gov
Website: http://www.oregonlegislature.gov/smithd