EDGEFIELD, S.C. — The National Wild Turkey Federation commends the House Committee on Natural Resources for the passage of H.R.2936 as well as Congressman Bruce Westerman (R-AR) for his continued efforts to improve the management of our federal forests.
The Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017, introduced by Westerman earlier this month, aims to increase proactive forest management to combat catastrophic wildfires, promote healthy and sustainable forests and create early successional wildlife habitat.
The act would streamline a multitude of processes involved in the active management of our federal forest land. The issues our forests face continue to grow as wildfires become more disastrous, insects and diseases continue to cause destruction and resources are being spent on redundant processes and unnecessary litigation instead of active forest management.
“It is of increasing importance that we find common sense solutions to end the practice of fire-borrowing and increase the pace of active forest management on our national forests,” NWTF CEO Becky Humphries said. Fire-borrowing refers to the transfer of funds budgeted to other programs of the USDA Forest Service to cover the cost of fighting wildfires.
The bi-partisan bill was co-sponsored by representatives Raúl Labrador (R-ID), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Collin Peterson (D-MN) and Scott Tipton (R-CO). It also received praise from House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman and avid supporter of active forest management Rob Bishop (R-UT) and Western Caucus Chairman Paul Gosar, D.D.S. (R-AZ).
“Congressman Westerman has worked diligently to ensure this issue is not overlooked,” Humphries said. “We offer our thanks to him and all of the co-sponsors and Chairman Bishop for their support. Our federal lands are irreplaceable, and proper management of them is critical to the success of our Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative. We will continue to support H.R.2936 and look forward to a quick passage in the House so the bill can be sent to the Senate.”
About the National Wild Turkey Federation
When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were about 1.5 million wild turkeys in North America. After decades of work, that number hit an historic high of almost 7 million turkeys. To succeed, the NWTF stood behind science-based conservation and hunters’ rights. Thanks to the efforts of dedicated volunteers, professional staff and committed partners, the NWTF has facilitated the investment of $488 million in wildlife conservation and the preservation of North America’s hunting heritage. The NWTF has improved more than 17 million acres of wildlife habitat and introduce 100,000 people to the outdoors each year. The NWTF Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative is a charge that mobilizes science, fundraising and devoted volunteers to raise $1.2 billion to conserve and enhance more than 4 million acres of essential wildlife habitat, recruit at least 1.5 million hunters and open access to 500,000 acres for hunting. For more information, visit NWTF.org.