Wild Olympics forum Thursday

A town hall-style forum to discuss all sides of the Wild Olmpics debate will be at 6 Thursday night at the Bishop Center on the Grays Harbor College campus.

Recreation and conservation groups have been working on a proposal known as the Wild Olympics Campaign to provide more wilderness protections around Olympic National Park, declare some rivers in and around the park “Wild and Scenic” and allow the park to expand if landowners in certain areas want to sell to the government. Logging and thinning practices would be eliminated. Hiking would remain, but it may take longer to reach some trail heads because access by car would be eliminated in some areas.

The proponents and opponents of the issue will each be given 30 minutes to talk about their side and present supporting data. Congressional staff will also be given 30 minutes.

The presentations will be followed by a 10-minute break and conclude with a Q&A. The forum was orgnaized by the mayors of Grays Harbor cities, who have met for casual meetings to talk about common interests for the past few years.