Tester upbeat on fate of forest bill

US Sen. Jon Tester’s long-stalled forest bill, the Forest Jobs and Recreation Act, which would newly designate acreage for both wilderness and logging in three Montana forests, could be finding some new momentum, the senator and bill supporters say.

Tester’s bill was introduced in 2009.  It designates at least 100,000 acres of national forestland for logging on three Montana forests while also creating 667,000 acres of new wilderness.  The bill also takes 370,000 acres of wilderness study areas and designates them as recreation areas, which can be used by motorized vehicles and others.