I looked for a position at Tiller for years. People never left. How times change. Still, the Forest Service should keep Tiller.
The absence of salvage after fires is leaving hundreds of thousands of snags across the landscape. We are getting more fires per thunderstorm. Snags are the tallest, driest targets on the landscape, and there are more snags than ever. No wonder why we are getting more lightning caused fires. It's not because of drought and climate change. It's simple math. There's more snags. Closing the station seems insane when you consider the recent and inevitable future fire events. Why pull out of an area you know is going to be a problem? The only reason I can think of is because under current management practices the ranger station could burn down.
As for cell service, I don't see why the Forest Service doesn't pay for a tower. They've repeatedly paid for temporary cell towers on numerous fires they've had. They probably paid as much or more for all those temporary towers as they would for a permanent one. Current management practices will result in more fires in the future. There is and will be a need for another tower. Make it permanent. It would provide cell coverage to the public in an area where it is lacking. Sounds like an infrastructure construction project to me.
If the Umpqua National Forest wants to cut costs it should shut down that expensive supervisor's office and move everyone to the various districts. That would be a real cost saving move, and because personnel lived in the woods, they too could experience the threat to their homes and loved ones from wild fire.