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WESTERN COUNCIL OF INDUSTRIAL WORKERS, INTERNATIONAL WOODWORKERS OF AMERICA STATEMENT ON REQUEST TO DELAY LANDS, FAMILIES PROTECTION ACT

WESTERN COUNCIL OF INDUSTRIAL WORKERS, INTERNATIONAL WOODWORKERS OF AMERICA STATEMENT ON REQUEST TO DELAY LANDS, FAMILIES PROTECTION ACT
 WASHINGTON, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Michael Draper, executive secretary of the Western Council of Industrial Workers, and Wilson Hubbell, president of the International Woodworkers of America, issued the following statement regarding Sen. Brock Adams' (D-Wash.) letter to Sen. J. Bennett Johnston (D-La.) requesting the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee delay mark-up of the Federal Lands and Families Protection Act (S. 1156):
 We are appalled by Senator Adams' request. His attempt to obstruct the development of a balanced solution to the timber supply crisis in the Pacific Northwest is an insult to our members and forest products workers throughout the nation. Senator Adams' "My way or no way" comments come at a time when members of the Energy Committee are on the verge of agreeing to a resolution of the supply crisis by considering the bi-partisan supported Federal Lands and Families Protection Act. Senator Adams is asking the Energy Committee to prolong the economic and social suffering of forest products workers, their families and communities. If Senator Adams has developed legislation to resolve the supply crisis, he should introduce it now.
 Despite what Senator Adams may think, forest products workers need a comprehensive, national legislative solution to the supply crisis. The AFL-CIO supports the Federal Lands and Families Protection Act because it offers Congress this solution, striking a critical balance between environmental concerns and economic realities.
 On behalf of our members, we urge Senator Johnston to support S. 1156 and proceed despite Senator Adams' request. We will continue to work with any and all members of Congress who are seriously committed to developing a comprehensive solution to the supply crisis.
 The 30,000-member Western Council of Industrial Workers and the 28,000-member International Woodworkers of America, U.S., are headquartered in Portland, Ore.
 Following is the text of the letter sent from Adams to Johnston:
 Recent events in the forest management crisis in the Pacific Northwest will likely lead to renewed requests for markup of S. 1156 in the Energy and Natural Resources Committee. I strongly urge the committee not to take up the bill at this time.
 The concepts contained in S. 1156 attempt to apply solutions that are national in scope to a crisis that is local to the Pacific Northwest. Such over-reaching is likely to lead to the divisiveness the Senate experienced with the National Energy Strategy and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
 While there are serious problems with forest management across the country, the crisis in the Pacific Northwest cannot wait for a national consensus to develop on issues such as below-cost timber sales and clearcutting in national forests. By proposing to amend the National Forest Management and Endangered Species Acts and to severely limit judicial review, S. 1156 places these and other such controversial issues before the Energy and Natural Resources Committee. We can, and we must, resolve the crisis in the Pacific Northwest without resorting to such extraordinary measures.
 The precipitating event in this crisis was the failure by the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management to develop and implement legally and scientifically defensible standards and guidelines for land management plans. The repeated refusal by the administration to revise these guidelines to comply with the requirements of the federal forest management laws is the legal basis for the injunctions that have paralyzed the region's timber sale program. The administration has continued to unnecessarily expose forest management in the Pacific Northwest to additional litigation by its recent refusal to release its own draft recovery plan for the northern spotted owl, choosing instead to propose solutions that would require Congress to enact highly contentious amendments to the Endangered Species Act and other environmental laws.
 A legislative solution to the crisis in the Northwest must focus not on amending national legislation or limiting administrative appeals or judicial review, but on bringing forest management standards and guidelines back into compliance with the legislative direction contained in existing laws and on providing economic assistance to communities and workers who have been harmed by the administration's intransigencest management bills. Members of the timber industry, labor groups, and the conservation community have been involved in these discussions. The House Interior and Insular Affairs Committee is expected to produce a new comprehensive proposal within a few weeks.
 I respectfully request members of the committee not to resurrect the concepts in S. 1156 until efforts to find a less drastic and more immediately available solution to the Pacific Northwest's crisis have been considered.
 -0- 2/27/92 R
 /CONTACT: Michael Draper of the Western Council of Industrial Workers, 503-228-0235; Wilson Hubbell of the International Woodworkers of America, 503-656-1475; or Michael Bsharah for the Timber Industry Labor-Management Committee, 202-452-9435/ CO: Western Council of Industrial Workers; International Woodworkers
 of America ST: District of Colubmbia, Washington IN: SU: LEG


TW -- DC029 -- 3498 02/27/92 17:40 EST
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Date:Feb 27, 1992
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