Conservation groups celebrated a long-sought victory Thursday after the U.S. Senate approved designating 30,500 acres for wilderness protection around Devil’s Staircase, 10 miles northeast of Reedsport. Timber industry representatives, however, were less than enthused. The American Forest Resource Council President Tom Partin said lawmakers should wait to designate new wilderness areas until plans are in place to increase logging on other federal lands. “It’s not wise to do so until they strike a balance,” he said. “It feels out of balance right now.” The Devil’s Staircase Wilderness Act was in a package of 14 bills that was passed unanimously and …
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