Senator Baldwin Joins the Call to Reform Wildfire Funding

Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) has joined a bipartisan call to reform wildfire funding in a recent letter to congressional leaders.

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Senator Baldwin, with FPL Assistant Director Mike Ritter (left) and Director Michael T. Rains during a 2014 tour of the lab.

Announced on Senator Baldwin’s blog, the call supports the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act which would support the timber and paper industry in Wisconsin and elsewhere by ending “fire borrowing.”

Fire borrowing occurs when funds normally available to the Forest Service for basic operations are diverted to fight wildland fires, typically in the summer season.

Such borrowing, Baldwin’s letter states, “has resulted in substantially decreased resources that would normally be used to complete timber contracts, install ecological restoration projects, and conduct research at the Northern Research Station. Fire borrowing also hurts critical research conducted at the Forest Service’s Forest Products Laboratory, which is developing innovative uses the for the type of wood that often fuels our fiercest wildfires.”