Senator Herman Baertschiger
Salem, OR -State Senator Herman Baertschiger (R-Grants Pass) commended Governor John Kitzhaber (D) Thursday for his help in efforts to re-open the recently shuttered Rough and Ready Lumber Mill.
“I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the Governor was helping out this iconic southern Oregon company,” said Baertschiger. “I believe that several of my conversations with the Governor about the plight of saw mills around the state are paying off, and are part of the reason for his involvement with Rough and Ready.”
Baertschiger cautioned that the underlying issue affecting Oregon’s rural, timber dependent communities has not been addressed. Baertschiger believes that more raw logs need to be harvested off of O&C Lands if depressed local economies are ever going to be strong again.
“I’m pleased that the Governor and I have found a lot to agree on when it comes to the bigger issues of managing O&C Lands,” said Baertschiger. “We have consensus on the volume of harvest and the fact that harvest should happen on O&C Lands across the state, not just a certain geographic location. We also agree that communities need certainty of timber harvest, so the sale of harvests cannot be in a constant state of litigation.”
Baertschiger went on to say that there is one important area of disagreement between him and the Governor. Baertschiger feels that there should not be a designation of wilderness areas on O&C Lands, while the Governor is supportive of the idea.
Baertschiger has been involved with the timber industry for over thirty years and has served on several county boards and tasks forces.
Sen. Baertschiger and his wife have raised their two sons on a ranch west of Grants Pass. He is an avid hunter, fisherman and enjoys horseback riding and is a private pilot.