Parnell Names Nine for Timber Task Force

Governor Sean Parnell named nine Alaskans to his new Timber Task Force on Friday.

Randy Ruaro, the governor’s deputy chief of staff, is one of seven Southeast residents on the panel.

The administration announced plans for the task force in May after pulling out of the Tongass Futures Roundtable. That group addressed Southeast timber and conservation issues, but had a broader membership, including environmental and Native organizations.

Parnell said the roundtable failed to help develop the timber industry despite five years of work. Some on the roundtable opposed logging.

Ruaro says the task force will look at national and state forests, as well as private land. And its focus will be statewide.

State Forester Chris Maisch of Fairbanks will chair the task force, which will meet later this month. He played a leadership role in the Tongass Roundtable.

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