In a move that drew tentative approval from both environmental groups and the timber industry, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman yesterday named Dale Bosworth to head the U.S. Forest Service. Bosworth, a longtime USFS employee, has been regional forester since 1997 for the agency’s Northern Region, which covers 25 million acres in 12 national forests in Idaho, Montana, and the Dakotas. Mike Dombeck, USFS chief under former President Clinton, praised Bosworth yesterday, noting that he was a key architect of Clinton’s plan to ban road-building and logging on 58.5 million acres of national forestland. The Bush administration has sent strong signals that it would like to roll back the plan, and enviros and industry folks will now be watching Bosworth to see whether he fights for it or recommends that it be diminished.

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