National Forest Services Reopen After Shutdown - News, Sports and Weather

National Forest Services Reopen After Shutdown

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The end of the government shutdown meant back to work for many federal employees including those at the Lewis and Clark National Forest Service. The employees are in full swing getting things back up and running.

"Of course after being out on furlough for the last two and half almost three weeks, we are all really glad to be back. There is a lot of work ahead of us as we get going again,"said Dave Cunningham, the Public Affairs Officer of the Lewis and Clark National Forest Service.

He added that some of their programs did suffer from the shutdown.

"One of the impacts of the furlough on the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center is that the Voices in the Shadow program will basically be cut in half. It was scheduled to start tomorrow Friday October 18th, but since we are back for the first time on October the 17th, after several weeks off, the program will be canceled this weekend and will pick up again next weekend."

Even with some set backs the forest service is working quickly to get things reopened and available to the community.

"As we reopen, one of the first things we are asking ourselves is what is our real priority work, and that's what we are getting after," said Cunningham.

Some of the services at the top of the priority list include getting contracts for roadwork and timber sales reopened. Next on the list is getting all camp grounds reopened.

Cunningham added, "As folks look to go back to the forest to recreate they wonder what might be open and we would say in general those facilities that would usually be open this time of year will be the ones reopening in the days to come."

Those interested in the recreations open in their area should call their local ranger district office or the Lewis and Clark National Forest supervisors office at 406-791-7700.

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