Sen. Tom Saviello and Rep. Craig Hickman will be co-chairmen of the Maine Legislature’s Commission to Study the Public Reserved Lands Management Fund.

The commission was formed by the 127th Legislature. The commission will evaluate the state’s use of public land, specifically harvesting practices, the preservation of forests for recreation, wildlife habitat and public use, according to a news release from the office of the Senate president.

Other appointees to the commission are Sen. Jim Dill, D-Old Town; Rep. Don Marean, R-Hollis; and Rep. John Martin, D-Eagle Lake; commercial wood harvester Tony Madden; state-licensed forester Jonathan Robbins; forest health scientist Richard Smith; and tourism industry represtantive Bob Myers.

The commission, which will meet a minimum of four times, will offer recommendations to the Legislature based on its findings.

“This is an issue that I feel very strongly about, and I am thrilled to be a member of this study group,” said Saviello, R-Wilton, in the release from the Senate president’s office. “We need to ensure that the policies we enact in the Legislature are working for Maine’s public lands, which are so important to us and to future generations.”

Saviello is also chairman of the Environmental and Natural Resources Committee. He represents the Senate’s 18th District, which includes parts of Kennebec and Franklin counties.

Hickman, D-Winthrop, is in his second term, representing District 81 in the Legislature. His district includes Readfield, Winthrop and part of Monmouth. He is the House chairman of the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.

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