Lawmakers remain confident of timber counties fix

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GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) -- Members of Oregon's congressional delegation acknowledge they face an uphill battle on legislation to forge short- and long-term solutions to the fiscal problems facing timber counties, but are confident they can pull it off.

Democrat Rep. Peter DeFazio and Republican Rep. Greg Walden met Thursday in Grants Pass with officials from timber counties facing fiscal crises since expiration last year of a federal safety net that has paid out $3 billion nationwide to make up for declining federal logging revenues.

At a press conference, DeFazio likened their efforts to a silent movie, where the heroine is saved at the last minute from being run over by a train.

Walden says they have done if before, and he is confident Congress does not want to let timber counties go broke.