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Bishop and Westerman Applaud Advance of Comprehensive Forest Management and Wildfire Fix in Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 13, 2016 -

Today, the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry held a markup to consider H.R. 2647, the Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015 (Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-AR). On Friday, Chairman of the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), released emergency wildfire legislation as an amendment in the nature of a substitute for H.R. 2647, which passed committee today.

“I applaud Chairman Roberts for advancing this important package through committee. This bicameral legislation responsibly addresses fire borrowing and brings much-needed management reforms to restore forest health. This package is crucial to mitigating increasingly catastrophic wildfire and we will push for it to become law. If we fail to improve active management, the fires will rage on,” Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) said.

“More than 10 million acres went up in smoke in 2015 as a result of decades of unmanaged forests and a government spending more on fighting fires and special interest groups in court than managing the forests in scientifically-proven ways,” Rep. Westerman stated. “The Resilient Federal Forests Act reins in frivolous lawsuits, allows federal agencies to manage the national forest system in a scientifically-sound way, and ends fire-borrowing in a cost-effective manner. I am glad Sen. Roberts took up this important legislation in committee. I hope the Senate passes the Resilient Federal Forests Act in the near future.”

S. 3085, the Emergency Wildfire and Forest Management Act, is similar to H.R. 2647, the Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015, which passed the House on July 9, 2015 and was referred to the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee. Both bills pair a responsible solution to “fire borrowing” with much needed reforms to improve forest health on federal lands.

Click here to learn more about H.R. 2647.

Contact: Committee Press Office 202-226-9019

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