Oregon timber counties to receive money from Feds

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — Federal timber payments held up by the mandatory budget cuts known as sequestration will start showing up in Oregon timber county accounts next week.

U.S. Department of Interior spokeswoman Jessica Kershaw said Thursday the U.S. Bureau of Land Management revised its earlier estimate on when the $1.9 million in payments to the so-called O&C counties would be processed.

She said earlier word that the payments would not be processed until the end of June had been based on a cautious approach.

In February, BLM had withheld 10 percent of the money those counties were expecting from the last payment under a subsidy known as the Secure Rural Schools Act.

It later calculated that it only needed to withhold half of that.

The counties had complained the delay was making it difficult for them to balance their budgets.