AUGUSTA — Maine’s Department of Conservation reported a near-record timber harvest of 70,600 cords on public reserved lands during the past winter season.

The harvest exceeded that of recent years and is valued at about $2.2 million. The department’s Tom Morrison says the funds support maintenance, operations and public access on the state lands.

Local logging contractors were hired in 29 locations and cut timber across the state. Logs were delivered to more than 40 Maine mills for value-added processing.

Gov. Paul LePage says the harvest is about private jobs and public access to the woods for Mainers.

Maine has nearly 600,000 acres of public reserved lands, which are managed for multiple uses, including special protection for unique natural and historic areas, recreation, wildlife habitat and timber harvesting.

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