News Releases

Senator Murray Helps Pass Legislation to Save Local Timber Jobs

May 15 2008

TREE Act would strengthen ability of local timber producers to compete in global market, continue to provide family-wage jobs

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) helped to pass a modified version of the Timber Revitalization and Economic Enhancement (TREE) Act as part of the Farm Bill conference report in the U.S. Senate. Murray, who has supported the TREE Act for many years, was integral in including the TREE Act in the Farm Bill which passed the Senate by a vote of 81-15. The bill will now go to the President who has threatened to veto it. 

"The TREE Act will allow our timber industry to better compete in the global market and help preserve timber jobs in many of our rural communities," said Senator Murray. "This bill recognizes that foreign competition has changed the timber industry, and will help to level the playing field for domestic companies that are struggling to remain viable. In Washington state, this bill will help save thousands of jobs at a time when families are struggling just to make ends meet."

The TREE Act is designed to reduce the inconsistency that exists in the tax code pertaining to revenues generated by timber harvests in the U.S.

In Washington state, the timber and forest products industry employees 45,000 people. Weyerhaeuser pulp and paper company based in Federal Way, Washington currently has 7,000 employees in Washington state. The TREE Act will help preserve many of those jobs.