NWTF applauds passage of Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017


EDGEFIELD, S.C. — The National Wild Turkey Federation applauds the passage of H.R. 2936 – Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2017 – and believes Congress has taken a huge step forward in protecting the nation’s forests.

The NWTF also expresses appreciation for Congressmen Bruce Westerman (R-AR) as the author of this legislation as well as Rob Bishop (R-UT), Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee. Without their leadership and the support of other House committees and numerous Democrat and Republican co-sponsors working tirelessly on this important legislation, active forest management would again take a back seat.

“We appreciate Representative Westerman’s willingness to work with the NWTF and for bringing the forester’s perspective to the debate. It is of upmost importance to conduct proper forest management and properly fund that management, and H.R. 2936 is the first step,” said NWTF CEO Becky Humphries. “Moving forward, we hope to work with lawmakers from the U.S. Senate to pass similar legislation and eventually enact law for the benefit of our nation’s forests and its wildlife.”

H.R. 2936 aims to increase proactive forest management to prevent wildfires, promote healthy and sustainable forests and create early successional wildlife habitat. It also streamlines a multitude of processes involved in the active management of our federal forest land.

This year has seen an increase in the number of wildfires as well as an increase in the amount of damage caused by those fires. Research on the causes of such catastrophic fires has pointed to hotter and drier weather conditions, longer fire seasons, a lack of active forest management, underfunding of the U.S. Forest Service’s forest health and restoration programs as well as legal battles.

The bi-partisan bill was co-sponsored by representatives Ralph Lee Abraham (R-LA), Bradley Byrne (R-AL), Liz Cheney (R-WY), Greg Gianforte (R-MT), Raúl Labrador (R-ID), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Dan Newhouse (R-WA), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Collin Peterson (D-MN), Pete Sessions (R-TX), Jason Smith (R-MO), Chris Stewart (R-UT), Glenn Thompson (R-PA), Scott Tipton (R-CO) and David Valadao (R-CA). It also received praise from Western Caucus Chairman Paul Gosar, D.D.S. (R-AZ).

About the National Wild Turkey Federation
When the National Wild Turkey Federation was founded in 1973, there were about 1.3 million wild turkeys in North America. After decades of work, that number hit a historic high of almost 7 million turkeys. To succeed, the NWTF stood behind science-based conservation and hunters’ rights. Today, the NWTF is focused on the future of hunting and conservation through its Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt. initiative – a charge that mobilizes science, fundraising and devoted volunteers to conserve or enhance more than 4 million acres of essential wildlife habitat, recruit at least 1.5 million hunters and open access to 500,000 acres for hunting. For more information, visit NWTF.org.

For more information, contact Pete Muller at (803) 637-7698