Information provided by the office of Congressman Jimmy Panetta.
On Feb. 12, Congressman Jimmy Panetta voted for the Protecting America’s Wilderness Act, H.R. 2546, to provide permanent protections for large connected landscapes in California, Colorado, and Washington by designating approximately 1.37 million acres of federal land as new, expanded, or potential wilderness and safeguarding over 1,200 miles of river as components of the National Wild and Scenic River System. According to a recent release, Panetta incorporated an amendment to the bill to allow the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture to manage for fire, insects, and diseases in wilderness areas designated by the legislation.
“On the central coast of California, we are no stranger to the threat of wildfires on our federal land. Wildfires don’t stop at property lines, so neither should our federal efforts to combat wildfires and better manage our forest land,” Panetta said. “My amendment helps ensure that our federal land managers have the flexibility that they need to take any necessary actions to preemptively address fire, insects, and diseases in wilderness areas.”