Tester drops major forest bill.

Jon Tester on Friday released his much anticipated “Forest Jobs and Recreation Act”bill at RY Timber in Townsend, Mont. The measure calls for about 667,000 acres of new Wilderness designation, as well as 100,000 acres of mandated logging on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge and Kootenai National Forests. It also designates new recreation areas for mountain biking, off-road-vehicle riding, snomobiling, etc.

I’ll have more on the bill later, including detailed reactions from around the Montana conservation community, but for now here are links to the text of the bill, the map, and below is the full video of today’s press conference. I had to break the video into three parts due to YouTube’s 10 minute video restriction.

UPDATE: Here’s the audio from Tester’s meeting with reporters following the announcement. Warning, the quality isn’t great.