House Committee Overwhelmingly Approves Bipartisan Forest Health, Research Legislation
House Committee on Resources votes 25-13 to advance Forest Emergency Recovery and Research Act introduced by Walden, Baird, Herseth
March 29, 2006 -
Washington, D.C. -
In a bipartisan show of support for the Forest Emergency Recovery and Research Act, H.R. 4200, the House Committee on Resources today approved the bill by a vote of 25-13. The Committee has recognized the common sense approach to management of federal forestlands and support for enhanced scientific research on post-catastrophic event management found in H.R. 4200, which has nearly 150 cosponsors and was introduced by U.S. Representatives Greg Walden (R-OR), Brian Baird (D-WA) and Stephanie Herseth (D-SD) in November 2005.
"I'm a backpacker, hiker, camper, skier and kayaker. I am passionate about healthy forests, clean water and good habitat. I want to help our forests recover quicker after fires, hurricanes and other disturbances. And the Forest Emergency Recovery and Research Actwhen it becomes lawwill help America's forests and watersheds recover faster and better after a catastrophic event," said Walden, chairman of the Resources Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health.
"This legislation comes before the Resources Committee after more than two years of work by the Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health to examine the impediments to post catastrophic event recovery efforts. We asked the Government Accountability Office for assistance. We've hiked through forests from Oregon to South Dakota. We've consulted with tribal land managers and fish and wildlife organizations. In all, we've held eight hearings and heard from hundreds of witnesses and citizens as we crafted this legislation, which will give our talented federal land managers the tools necessary to become more effective and responsible stewards of forestlands damaged by catastrophic events," added Walden. "I'm grateful for the support shown today by my colleagues on the House Resources Committee and look forward to working with them further as we advance this legislation through the congressional process."