Gov. Walker hoping to revitalize Wis. timber industry in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

By KBJR News 1

Credit: Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

Gov. Walker hoping to revitalize Wis. timber industry in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

December 12, 2013 Updated Dec 12, 2013 at 12:43 PM CST

Madison, WI (NNCNOW.com) --- Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announced a new timber harvesting initiative in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest in an effort to revitalize the state’s timber industry while creating and maintaining hundreds of jobs.

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation is awarding $49,000 in funding for the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest Stewardship Initiative. The grant will allow the U.S. Forest Service to utilize income from current timber sales to contract with local businesses to implement a wide range of practices on the forest, including the sale of timber sale and the harvesting of backlogged timber.

The effort is expected to spur economic growth in the region and could lead to more jobs in the forest industry and supporting sectors.

“The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest contains a valuable resource that, right now, is underutilized – millions of feet of timber just waiting to be harvested in an environmentally sensitive, sustainable way,” said Governor Walker. “This is another way to ensure forestry remains a vibrant part of Wisconsin’s economy.”

According to the Department of Natural Resources, Wisconsin’s paper industry employs more than 50,000 people, with many more jobs supported by the industry. The state’s 1,200 forest product companies account for one of every six manufacturing jobs.

The 2013-2015 Biennial Budget includes $600,000 for the Wisconsin Forest Practices Study. The study will research how to maintain and grow a sustainable, competitive wood fiber industry.

Posted to the web by Krista Burns
kburns@kbjr.com

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