In the early 1900s, after years ofcampaigning, the University of Nebraska’s Charles Bessey convinced President Theodore Roosevelt and his administration that a forest could be grown in the heart of the Nebraska Sandhills. The intent was to eventually produce wood products that would help to offset what some thought would be a national timber shortage due in part to the nation’s growing appetite for wood products along with concerns related to unregulated harvests and large fires. Fast forward to today and the future of the nation’s largest hand-planted forest hangs in the in-balance after devastating wildfires consumed a large portion of the area in October. But one Nebraska lawmaker is doing their part to ensure the state rebuilds what has been destroyed. “When I look at the 4-H camp and the fact this was an investment that first introduced people to the Nebraska Sandhills and the National Forest,” said District 42 Nebraska State Senator Mike Jacobson. “If we don’t rebuild that, shame on us because we’ve already established something out here that we need to maintain and not just maintain but bring it back as something much greater than it was before.” Sen. Jacobson adds that he believes this part of the state has been neglected. Sen. Jacobson concluded that his vision for this project is similar to what has been done at Lied Lodge in Nebraska City. LB281 will be heard at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday in room 1525 at the Capitol during the Natural Resources Committee meeting.