CLINTON VOWS REPEAL OF LOGGING RIDER PROVISIONS
ALLOWING OLD SECTION 318 SALES TO BE REVIVED, BUT STOPS
SHORT OF VOWING FULL REPEAL
Fisheries and Conservation News from the Pacific
Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations and the
Insititute for Fisheries Resources
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HERE IS THE PRESIDENT'S AND PRESS SECRETARY'S PRESS
QUOTES TODAY ON THE SALVAGE RIDER, JUST OFF WIRE SERVICE
SEATTLE (Reuter) - President Clinton, bowing to pressure
from environmentalists, Saturday called for repeal of
legislation he signed last year that opened the way for logging
thousands of acres of old-growth trees in national forests in
the Pacific Northwest.
The switch was announced during a brief visit by Clinton to
Washington, a state he desperately needs in his column during
the November presidential election.
``We believe there should be a repeal of cutting in ancient
old-growth forests,'' said White House spokesman Mike McCurry.
Clinton had reluctantly accepted the salvage logging
provision that was included in a budget bill last summer which
cut federal spending. McCurry said that at the time the
administration felt the government had the legal authority to
manage the program. But a series of court rulings have opened
more old-growth areas to cutting, he said.
The timber provision, suspending most environmental
safeguards in national forests, was promoted as a way of
cleaning out dead trees and underbrush that could cause fires.
But thousands of healthy trees are also being targeted for
Environmentalists have been increasingly up in arms about
the provision and a few showed up to greet Clinton during his
last stop on a two-day political swing through California and
Washington with signs showing their displeasure with the cutting
of old-growth forests.
Clinton told an audience of supporters in Shoreline just
north of Seattle that ``we're going to fix that.''
McCurry told reporters that the administration would ask
Congress to repeal the provision and would look for ways to make
the salvage program work better. He also suggested the
government could help those people who would suffer economically
by buying out current salvage contracts.
END OF ALERT