WASHINGTON, D.C. - By unanimous vote the House Committee on Resources today passed the Rogue River National Forest Building Conveyance Act (H.R. 3796), Congressman Bob Smith's (R-OR) bill to increase management efficiency of Oregon's public lands.
H.R. 3796, which was approved by the Resources Forest and Forest Health Subcommittee on May 7th, would provide for the Medford Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the United States Forest Service (USFS) to use funds from the sale or exchange of the McAndrews Service Center to expand and improve the current BLM site, allowing for both agencies to work from the same location. Smith's legislation has the Administration's support and would require no additional taxpayer funds for the collocation process.
"The BLM and the Forest Service currently occupy offices across town from one another. Sharing office space would save taxpayers' money, improve the management of the Rogue River National Forest, and make it easier for people to enjoy Oregon's public lands," Smith said.
"This bill is basic common sense. The BLM and the Forest Service already work together to manage the Forest land. This is a way to ensure they do so in a more efficient, cost-effective manner," Smith said.
The Rogue River National Forest currently uses the McAndrews Service Center to house various forest-wide support facilities that would no longer be needed if the USFS collocates with the BLM in its existing site.
Smith represents Oregon's Second Congressional District - including Medford - in the U.S. House of Representatives.