Mary Callahan, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Cal Fire has approved plans for selective logging of redwood and Douglas fir trees on 224 acres above the lower Russian River between Guerneville and Monte Rio, raising the prospect of legal action by opponents who hope they still might prevent the Silver Estates harvest from going forward.
The state agency granted approval late last week after months of public scrutiny, plan revisions and state delays that critics say reflect the proposal’s fundamentally flawed nature.
But in a Nov. 17 letter, Eric Huff, staff chief of Cal Fire’s Forest Practice Program, said the final version — some 500 pages of reports, descriptions, maps and other information — conforms with state Forest Practice Rules. The decision authorizes landowner Roger Burch and his family to carry out its provisions any time over the next five years.
What happens next appears to depend in large part on whether Burch and his representatives decide to begin operations this winter, within the restrictions permitted for the traditional wet weather season.