Gorge Commission Approves Management Plan Revisions

The Columbia River Gorge Commission voted 9-2 to approve the final package of revisions to the National Scenic Area Management Plan in its Gorge 2020 process.  That includes urban area boundary revision guidelines with a cumulative limitation for any one urban area’s increase to 50 acres or 2% of its land base, whichever is less, that has drawn the ire of officials in The Dalles and Wasco County in particular.  Gubernatorial appointee to the Commission Dan Ericksen, a former Wasco County Commissioner, was one of the no votes on the package along with Skamania County representative Tamara Kaufman.  Ericksen said before his vote that the boundary revision guidelines are inconsistent with the Scenic Area Act.  But fellow gubernatorial appointee Bowen Blair said the cap has a precedent in the plan’s recreation resort amendment, and that he was confident the City of The Dalles would be able to make its case to future commissions.  Wasco County representative Rodger Nichols gave a “reluctant” yes vote to the package but said he remained “bitterly opposed” to the 50 acre cap.  

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