DelBene: Hearing on Wildfires was ‘Long Overdue’
Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) issued the following statement regarding the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry hearing on the 2015 fire season and long-term trends:
“I’m very pleased that the subcommittee has called this hearing, though I think it’s long overdue. This is the first hearing solely on wildfires in more than a decade. This year’s wildfire season has been one of the worst and most costly in Washington state history,” DelBene said. “Under the current system, the U.S. Forest Service will have to continue diverting funds from other programs as fire seasons worsen and its budget remains stagnant. This is a crucial issue for Washington’s First District, our state and many others, and it deserves our utmost attention.”
This year, wildfires in Washington state burned more than 1 million acres and cost more than $319 million to fight. DelBene is a cosponsor of the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act, which would restructure the U.S. Forest Service’s budget to ensure there are dedicated funds for wildfire suppression.
Watch DelBene’s questioning from the hearing HERE.