Timber industry tied to proposal shifting wildfire protection costs from landowners to public

By Alex Baumhardt
The Oregon Capital Chronicle
January 10, 2024
Category: Forestry
Region: United States, US West

Timber companies appear to have played an influential role in a new legislative proposal to find sustainable funding for fighting wildfires. If passed, it could save the industry millions of dollars in fees they now pay to the state for fire protection and shift more of the cost to all Oregon property owners.  Sen. Elizabeth Steiner, D-Portland, will present the proposal on Wednesday morning to the Senate Natural Resources and Wildfire Committee for consideration during the session. It would impose a $10 fee on all property holders in Oregon to pay for fighting wildfires… The proposal would reduce the per-acre fees that private and public forest and range landowners now pay to the Oregon Department of Forestry for protection. …Critics say it shifts the costs of protecting billions of dollars in private timber assets away from the companies that own much of the land at risk to average Oregonians.

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