PENINSULA: Logging could be allowed in spotted owl habitat

Logging could be allowed on a portion of the 60,000 acres of state trust land on the North Olympic Peninsula previously set aside for northern spotted owl protection.

But local officials say it may be two or three years before logging could begin.

The six-member state Board of Natural Resources met Tuesday and asked for more time to consider eliminating “voluntary” spotted owl protection circles created by former Lands Commissioner Jennifer Belcher.

The circles — essentially untouched areas where spotted owls could theoretically live — encompass approximately 200,000 acres statewide.

Former Clallam County Commissioner Phil Kitchel of Forks said those circles include 60,000 acres on the North Olympic Peninsula.

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