Republican News

Jul 24 2003

SENATORS DOMENICI, CRAIG AND KYL HAIL AG COMMITTTEE PASSAGE OF HEALTHY FOREST LEGISLATION

3 WESTERN FOREST LEADERS CALL FOR SWIFT SENATE PASSAGE

Washington, D.C. – Senators Domenici, Craig and Kyl today commended the Senate Agriculture Committee for swift approval of the Chairman’s Mark on H.R. 1904, The Healthy Forest Restoration of 2003. The three senators worked closely with Agriculture Chairman Thad Cochran in crafting the chairman’s mark. The western forest leaders today called for swift Senate action on the legislation. The bill, which incorporates President Bush’s Healthy Forest Initiative, passed the House overwhelmingly 256-170 in May. Senator Domenici’s statement: “I commend the House and the Agriculture Committee for their swift action on this critical bill. I look forward to prompt Senate consideration as well. We cannot delay passage of healthy forest legislation any longer. Every season of delay costs millions of acres, hundreds of homes, countless wildlife and the precious lives of firefighters, like the two brave young men who died in a wildfire just 48 hours ago. Those are the 7th and 8th firefighter deaths this summer. In my 33 years in the Senate, I have seldom seen an instance where the price of delay is so profound and so tragic.” Senator Craig’s statement: “Passage of the bipartisan Healthy Forests bill in the Agriculture Committee today set the stage for this important legislation to get through the full Senate this year. The Committee worked hard to build upon the House passed version. It is a balanced product that address the crisis we are facing across America’s forests and rangelands - from fires in the West to bug infestations in the East. As smoke billows across the Western United States due to the raging fires that have already consumed millions of acres this summer, we cannot wait any longer. We must give our forests professionals the tools they need to clean-up overstocked forests that we all know are at high risk of catastrophic fire. I thank Senators Domenici and Kyl for their strong leadership on this bill and look forward to swift passage of this legislation in the Senate.” Senator Kyl’s statement: “We need to come together quickly to protect our forests before more fires destroy them. Safeguarding our forests and fragile ecosystems from horrific devastation is not only urgently needed, it is, quite simply, the right thing to do. But piecemeal, halfway solutions simply will not do the job. Over the last two years, my state of Arizona has learned the hard way that unless we are willing to act immediately to treat the greater forests along with areas surrounding communities, we risk losing them both.” ###