Former Democratic candidate challenges forestry proposal

Susan Williams, former Democratic candidate for New Jersey Assembly and Sussex County Freeholder, appeared at last Tuesday’s Sparta Township Council meeting to discuss a forestry management plan proposed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

williams-sparta.jpgThe plan covers 3,400 acres of publicly owned forest land in Sparta and adjacent municipalities. Susan made her comments as Chair of the local affiliate of the Sierra Club.

Jennifer Derricks describes the sometimes contentious meeting in detail in TAP into Sparta.

At the meeting, experts, members of various organizations, and local residents offered differing takes on the plan.

The stated goal of the plan is to promote a variety in the age of the trees, which in turn provides for a diversification of species, which improves the health of the forest and its water systems.

Skeptics expressed concern that implementation of the plan will disrupt existing wildlife and waterways. Some raised concern because the plan would raise money from the sale of harvested timber.