Republicans fake fix for fires

October 27, 2017

Dear Friends,

At a time when western states, including Oregon, are recovering from catastrophic wildfires that threatened communities across the region, Republicans in Congress are looking to use these fires as an excuse to pass legislation that would undermine protections on our public lands.
Their legislation, H.R. 2936, with the Orwellian name of the “Resilient Federal Forests Act,” is being considering under the guise of being a solution to wildfires, but don’t be fooled. This legislation guts protections for endangered species and the environmental review process for logging proposals. It also eliminates citizens’ rights to recover attorneys’ fees and severely limits judicial review in federal court, a brazen attempt to discourage concerned citizens from opposing these projects. Our national forests are public lands that belong to all of us, not just a few large timber companies.
This bill would not make our forests healthier or more resilient. It would take us three steps backwards when what we need is better protection, conscientious environmental reviews, and more responsible stewardship. Instead of addressing the real problem of long-term funding for fighting wildfires, their bill tries to take advantage of public concern over these disasters to pass a massive anti-environment bill.
It is shameful and I won’t stand for it. I have voted against this bill before and I will be opposing it again in the 115th Congress. Our public lands are critical to our conservation and climate legacy, and I won’t sit back idly while my Republican colleagues advance efforts to harm them.

Earl Blumenauer

Member of Congress