State Foresters to Congress: Fix the Emergency Wildland Fire Funding Problem Today

 


WASHINGTON—The National Association of State Foresters (NASF) continues to closely follow Congressional negotiations that address wildland fire funding and forest management reforms.

Jay Farrell, Executive Director of the National Association of State Foresters said today:

“State Foresters, who direct the nation’s state forestry agencies, urge leaders in Congress to act now and support a fire funding fix in the omnibus appropriations bill.

“In the United States, catastrophic wildfires are not funded the way the government funds other natural disasters. The impacts of this broken fire funding system are national in scale. Over the past three years, funding for non-fire programs at the USDA Forest Service have decreased by hundreds of millions of dollars.By redirecting funds intended for programs that improve forest resiliency—such as mitigation and forest thinning efforts—the current budgeting framework exacerbates forest health issues and actually increases future fire risk and costs.”

“NASF is hopeful that leaders in Congress will pass a spending bill that solves the difficult challenges associated with wildfire funding impacts and much-needed forest management reforms.
“America’s forests need a fix this year that will fund these catastrophic wildfires and assist with increasing the pace and scale of forest management projects.”

Contact: Gary Schiff, NASF Policy Director at gschiff@stateforesters.org or (775) 560-1284.

The National Association of State Foresters represents State and Territorial Forester interests by influencing forest policy and leading efforts to optimize social, economic, and environmental benefits of trees and forests. Learn more about wildfire at www.stateforesters.org/wildfire.

- See more at: http://stateforesters.org/state-foresters-congress-fix-emergency-wildland-fire-funding-problem-today#sthash.I7V9lc8p.dpuf