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Arkansas Forestry Association, More Than 40 Organizations Express Support for Resilient Federal Forests Act

June 26, 2015
Blog Post
Groups from California to Mississippi Support Healthy Forests Legislation

The Resilient Federal Forests Act has made it out of two different committees and is set for a vote on the floor of the House of Representative within weeks.

Since introducing the bill, I have continued to receive correspondence from constituents and groups around the country supporting this common sense legislation to make our national forests healthy again. Among the supporters is Max Braswell, executive vice president of the Arkansas Forestry Association (AFA).

In a letter, Braswell explains why he and the AFA support H.R. 2647 (.pdf):

AFA members and all Arkansans depend on healthy forests, whether they are privately-owned or national forest lands.

If enacted, this legislation will enhance opportunities for the U.S. Forest Service to use tools to better protect lands from wildfire, insects and disease. I know that our friends at the U.S. Forest Service here in Arkansas are striving to be as proactive as possible in managing this incredible resource. However, NFS lands continue to face real threats to long-term health and sustainability.

It is AFA’s hope that using the tools outlined in the legislation will increase opportunities for sustainable forest management, which in turn will provide increased benefits including clean water, air, wildlife habitat, employment for rural communities, and high quality forest products, just to name a few. I’m pleased to see that there is a high priority identified in the legislation for increased collaboration. In addition, modernizing the Secure Rural Schools & Community Self-Determination Act is much needed.

I applaud your proactive approach to address barriers, streamline processes, build dialogue, increase opportunities for sustainable forest management and implement reforms that are aimed at making real change.

Since introducing the legislation on June 4, the following organizations have written to my office or called to express their support:

  • National Association of Counties

  • Association of Arkansas Counties

  • Joe Fox, Arkansas State Forester

  • National Water Resources Association

  • Intertribal Council

  • United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners (individual letter)

  • Forest Products Industry National Labor Committee, which includes:

    • International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers

    • United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners

    • United Mine Workers of America

    • Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers

    • Carpenters Industrial Council

    • Woodworkers District Lodge 1, IAM

    • Woodworkers District Lodge 2, IAM

    • American Forest and Paper Association

    • American Forest Research Council

    • Arkansas Forestry Association

    • California Forestry Association

    • Intermountain Forest Association

    • Louisiana Forestry Association

    • Minnesota Forest Industries

    • Oregon Forest Industries Association

  • Sportsmen groups in a single letter:

    • Boone and Crocket Club

    • Camp Fire Club of America

    • Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation

    • Masters of Foxhounds Association

    • Mule Deer Foundation

    • National Association of Forest Service Retirees

    • National Rifle Association

    • National Wild Turkey Federation

    • North American Grouse Partnership

    • Pope and Young Club

    • Quality Deer Management Association

    • Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

    • Ruffed Grouse Society

    • Safari Club International

    • Tread Lightly!

    • Wildlife Mississippi

    • Wild Sheep Foundation

  • California Agriculture Commissioners and Sealers Association

  • El Dorado County, California

  • Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities Coalition

  • Public Lands Council

  • National Cattlemen Beef Association

  • National Home Builder Association