Press Releases

Herrera Beutler Effort to Establish Bear Ridge Community Forest to Bolster Community’s Water Supply Heads to President’s Desk to be Signed into Law

U.S. House and Senate approve FY22 Appropriations bill, includes funds to protect Ilwaco’s water supply and forestland, expand the public’s access to outdoor recreation

Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler announced today she secured $1.616 million in federal funding to help establish the City of Ilwaco’s Bear Ridge Community Forest project which would acquire 388 acres of forest within the Indian Creek watershed to establish a community forest surrounding the city’s water supply.

The FY22 Appropriations bill included funding for this community-supported request to acquire the land which will benefit the city and its residents through the protection of its municipal water supply and the forestland surrounding it. The project also seeks to benefit the community through sustainable use of forest resources and by providing new opportunities for outdoor recreation and education.

As a senior member of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, Herrera Beutler worked with the City of Ilwaco last year to support their request and helped secure the funds in the FY22 Energy and Water Subcommittee Appropriations bill, which was approved by the full U.S. House and Senate this week. The bill now heads to the president’s desk to be signed into law.

“My job is to go to bat for the community’s needs in Congress, and I was honored to do that this week by helping fulfill the City of Ilwaco’s effort to establish the Bear Ridge Community Forest,” Herrera Beutler said. “As a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, I was pleased to successfully secure the funding for this project that will improve Ilwaco residents’ drinking water by preserving watershed health, and also expand recreational opportunities for folks throughout the region.” 

“Funding this project will allow the City of Ilwaco to maintain the integrity of its municipal watershed through the purchase of timberland surrounding the reservoir. Establishing the Bear Ridge Community Forest will create a tremendous recreational and ecological resource for the region,” Ilwaco Mayor Mike Cassinelli said.