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Bishop, McCarthy Statement on the Resilient Federal Forests Act Headed to the Floor


WASHINGTON, D.C., October 26, 2017 -

Next week, the House will vote on H.R. 2936, the “Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017.” Introduced by Rep. Westerman (R-AR), the bipartisan bill reduces the risk of catastrophic wildfire and dramatically improves the health and resiliency of federal forests and grasslands.

“Catastrophic wildfires rage every year on federal lands leaving communities in loss and despair. Next week, the House will act on a solution to address our wildfire crisis and protect families and forests from preventable loss of life and environmental devastation. The Resilient Federal Forests Act is the only solution on the table to bend the cost curve of fire suppression and prevent wildfires from becoming uncontrollable, life-threatening calamities. Let’s pass this bill and give our federal land managers the tools to restore our decaying forests and protect our communities,“ Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) stated.

“California is recovering after the worst wildfires in our state’s history. This tragic disaster puts new emphasis on Congress to fix our fire management and suppression programs. This bill makes necessary changes to how forest management programs are funded and includes reforms to keep our forests healthy and less susceptible to the types of fires that ravaged our state this month. With the House acting on this bill next week, the Senate – including California’s Senators – should follow suit in short order to prepare our communities against future wildfire threats,” Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) stated.

"For far too long, our nation’s forests have been fighting a battle for survival. We need not look any further than the communities across Montana, California, and other western states ravaged by wildfires this year to see how years of unmanaged federal forests have wreaked havoc on our environment polluting our air and water and destroying thousands of acres of wildlife habitat. The Resilient Federal Forests Act would provide the Forest Service with new authorities to provide protection to America’s forests by reducing the risks of wildfires through proper management techniques. I thank Chairman Bishop for his leadership on this issue and I thank Leader McCarthy for bringing this bill to the floor. With lives and property at risk in his home state of California and across the western U.S., we cannot wait any longer to pass meaningful forestry legislation in Congress,” Rep. Westerman said.

Background:

In June, the Committee passed Rep. Westerman’s “Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017.” In the 114th Congress, the bill passed the House with bipartisan support

Contact: Committee Press Office 202-226-9019

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