EVANS CREEK, Ore. — Federal forest agencies are ordering loggers to stop harvesting timber on federal lands for the remainder of the government shutdown. Private logging contractors say they are being hit the hardest by this request.
Private logging contractors like H&M, Inc. are still logging federal lands, but come the middle of next week, all of their equipment and man power will be moved down the mountain…and that moves comes with a hefty price tag.
H&M Incorporated says it will cost their company almost 20,000 dollars to relocate their equipment, and on top of that, it will put crews out of work for an extended period of time. On Tuesday night, they laid off seven people and say they might have to lay off more if the shutdown continues.
“We take pride in what we do out here and when the government comes along and tells us to stop, it send the message that if they don’t care about us why should we care about them and the land we are trying to manage,” said Ed Hanscom, the co-owner if H&M Inc.
H&M says once they leave they will not be able to return to the land until next year when the winter weather is over. They do have other jobs lined up but they are not scheduled to start until January. A portion of the timber revenue from the logging of federal lands goes back to the state to help fund education and roads.