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The Fierce Politics of Water

August 07, 2013 J,

On Friday, the Washington Board of Natural Resources unanimously voted in favor of one of the largest private land acquisitions in Northwest history.

It’s an agreement that teases out a long narrative on water politics, interest-group horse-trading and the federal government’s role in the 21st century West.

In June, the Legislature approved $99 million from the capital budget to purchase 50,000 acres of the Teanaway River Valley north of Cle Elum. Forterra, a land conservation group, working in concert with the state, negotiated the agreement with the willing seller, American Forest Holdings, LLC.

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