Monday, April 1, 2019

Politics deny Arizona a tool to prevent forest fires as '19 season looms


STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIXSenator Otondo released the following statement on her Senate Bill 1477 not being assigned to a committee in the House:

Sen. Otondo
"This afternoon Governor Ducey will be holding a press conference with our state Department of Forestry and Fire Management to discuss preparations for the coming fire season. My Senate Bill 1477 directly would have addressed this issue by  allocating $4 million to best land management practices, which fund the removal of hazardous vegetation on state, tribal and federal lands by preventing forest fires through improving forest and watershed health, and protecting municipal water infrastructures.

"SB 1477 passed unanimously out of two Senate committees and left the chamber with broad bipartisan support. Speaker Rusty Bowers, however, decided that partisan politics were more important than the safety of Arizonans and their property and never assigned it to a House committee.

"Here at the legislature we are elected to serve all Arizonans and to find solutions that benefit the greater good of our state. All good ideas deserve a hearing no matter whether their sponsors have an "R" or a "D" beside their name."

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