John Seifert

Indiana wrapped up a celebration of its 200-year history Friday with a Statehouse ceremony for the last bicentennial project.

In the past two weeks, 44 trees native to Indiana have been planted around the Statehouse, as a way to wrap up the Bicentennial celebration.

Division of Forestry director John Seifert says the celebration is important as more residents move to cities.

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Legislators plan to introduce a bill that would force the Division of Forestry to set aside 10 percent of each state forest, with no logging allowed in those areas.

Two Republicans, Rep. Tony Cook (R-Cicero) and Rep. Eric Koch (R-Bedford), will introduce the bill during this legislative session.  Previous efforts to protect state forests from logging have gotten stuck in committee with little support from GOP legislators.

“I think what you’re going to see is bi-partisan support for the legislation,” says Jeff Stant, Executive Director of the Indiana Forest Alliance.