In response to the Guest Opinion submitted by Rep. Raul Labrador, which appeared in the Sept. 15 Idaho Statesman:
Thank you. I am proud of your efforts to save our forests and improve the way our forest fires are funded. Because the high cost of catastrophic fires eats up large portions of the Forest Service management budget, we need to make our forests productive instead of a total loss.
Environmentalists believe fire is nature’s way. I believe it is also. But I believe that controlled fires and excessive fuels can be managed appropriately. Our forests are a valued natural treasure. We have the technology and experience to save our forests and be true to our environment. Catastrophic fires only destroy nature, sometimes for generations, and often with excessive property damage.
We are already spending the money on huge fires. But the way our fires are being fought is not to put them out but to ensure multimillion-dollar paychecks to large companies who need big fires to exist. This cycle needs to stop. Who’s in charge? Too many people profit from our terrible loss.
Please contact your representatives. Tell them how important this to you and our country.
Dan Casey, Boise