Cooper Spur Exchange Bill Passes House

A bill authored by Oregon Congressmen Greg Walden and Earl Blumenauer to force the U.S. Forest Service to complete the Mt. Hood Cooper Spur Land Exchange passed the House by a vote of 401-2.  The bill directs the Forest Service to move forward with the underlying land exchange first approved by Congress in 2009.  The 2009 law authorizes a land exchange to allow development of 120 acres of federal land in Government Camp in exchange for 770 acres of non-federal land at Cooper Spur and stated that the Forest Service should complete the exchange within 16 months.  The bill passed Wednesday restates Congress’ intent that the Forest Service move quickly to complete the exchange, addresses disagreements over a conservation easement, and allows for a more transparent appraisal process.  Identical legislation introduced in the Senate by Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley was passed by that body in April as part of a broader energy and resources bill.

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