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P.L. 94-588 (October 22, 1976) largely amended the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974, which required a national, strategic planning process for renewable resources for the Forest Service, and comprehensive, interdisciplinary land and resource management plans for units of the National Forest System. The law was seen as necessary, because a lawsuit (commonly known as the Monongahela decision) had invalidated most timber practices in the national forests. NFMA substantially enacted detailed guidance for forest planning, particularly in regulating when, where, and how much timber could be harvested and in requiring public involvement in preparing and revising the plans. NFMA also established the Salvage Sale Fund and expanded other Forest Service trust funds and special accounts.

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