[env-trinity] Redding.com: Forest Service “fire borrowing” will soon begin to gut fuels reduction projects

Tom Stokely tstokely at att.net
Sat Aug 9 09:23:55 PDT 2014


Forest Service “fire borrowing” will soon begin to gut fuels reduction projects
August 9, 2014Uncategorizedlarrywinter
Talk about a crazy, asinine, shooting yourself in the foot policy forced upon the Forest Service.  This policy of “fire borrowing”, (misnamed of course, since a lot of that “borrowed” money never gets put back into the program it was taken from)  is one that gets attention every fire season yet the policy continues.
“When we begin to run out of money we have to dip into the very programs that will reduce the risk of these fires over time,” Vilsack said in a telephone interview with the Associated Press.
There’s been movement to address this concern in both Houses of Congress.  HR3992 has 131 cosponsors (71D, 60R) including northstate Reps LaMalfa R and Huffman D.  The Senate version is less bipartisan with 2 Republicans joining 16 Democrats in cosponsoring the bill.
This policy not only takes money from programs that help lower the probability of stand replacing wildfires, but we’ve had an instance here in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest where money was taken from afire settlement to rehab the Sims Fire for long overdue road maintenance projects that are in no way affiliated with the Sims Fire.  The Regional office of Randy Moore gave the Shasta-T a 3 year timeline to “obligate” the settlement money  of around 11 million dollars or else it will be “fire borrowed”.
So now Dave Myers, SO of the Shasta-Trinity, has taken money from fuels reduction projects based solely on the threat of “fire borrowing”.
When will this craziness end?
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