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From June 1975 to January 1981 Fred H. Hutchison served in the U.S. Senate as a legislative assistant to Senator Frank Church (D-Idaho), where he was responsible for a wide-range of issues, including natural resources, energy, and agriculture.

Handling a large and ever-changing portfolio, he worked closely with ranchers, farmers, loggers, university researchers, environmentalists, local elected officials, Native American leaders, and many others on a number of legislative initiatives, including:

National Forest Management Act of 1976

Public Law 94-588, Oct. 12, 1976

Wrote the guidelines on clearcutting and the small business road option and participated vigorously in the debate that preceded enactment of America's basic forest planning and management law.

Endangered American Wilderness Act of 1978

Public Law 95-237, Feb. 26, 1978

Wrote and managed the bill making the largest expansion of the National Wilderness Preservation System in 14 years. Included within the bill was the Gospel-Hump compromise described below.

Gospel-Hump Compromise

Public Law 95-237, Feb. 26, 1978

Helped broker a compromise agreement between environmentalists, forest products executives, and local government officials leading to establishment of the Gospel-Hump Wilderness and "release" of surrounding areas for multiple-use management.

Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978

Public Law 95-514, Oct. 25, 1978

Drafted and secure enactment of the most significant public rangeland bill since the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934. This bill also created the experiment range stewardship program, which brought ranchers and environmentalists together with land managers to develop locally conceived solutions.

Central Idaho Wilderness Act of 1980

Public Law 96-312, July 23, 1980

Wrote and managed all aspects of this legislation that established the 2.3 million acre River of No Return wilderness; designated the Salmon River as part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System; protected outfitter and guide activities and backcountry airstrips; and  released surrounding national forest areas for logging, mining and other multiple uses. (The wilderness was renamed the Frank Church - River of No Return Wilderness to honor Senator Church just before he passed away in 1984.)

Links and Related Pages

  Fred Hutchison Papers at Boise State University
  Frank Church Papers at Boise State University
  Frank Church - Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress


   2008 Fred H. Hutchison. All Rights Reserved.

Edited on: November 15, 2008