AFA Update: Thursday, May 21, 2015- Forest Ranger votes

  • This afternoon AFA convened around the horseshoe to vote on portions of the Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry budget.
  • The committee also voted to exempt two bills from the AFA Table.

This afternoon Appropriations voted on measures related to the Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry committee and exempted two items from the Appropriations Table.

Audio of today’s hearing may be found here.

ACF Budget

  • The committee voted to require the Director of the Bureau of Forestry to appoint no fewer than 45 and no more than 50 Forest Ranger II positions. With the understanding the the 48 Rangers currently employed will stay employed. The amendment also requires that the Director appoint no fewer than 16 Forest Rangers, classified as follows: 3 regional Rangers, 8 District Rangers, 1 Ranger Pilot Supervisor, and 4 Ranger Pilots.
    • Senator Katz was the lone dissenting vote against this measure.
  • The committee rejected the proposal to establish 7 Natural Law Enforcement Officers.
  • The committee voted to eliminate a provision in law prohibiting the Commissioner from purchasing firearms without authorization from the Legislature. The Commissioner can now choose to arm forest rangers if the dept chooses to do so.
  • The committee rejected the proposal to create a new Bureau of Conservation and reduce the overall number of bureaus from 4 to 3.
  • The committee voted to limit timber harvesting on public lands to an average of 160,000 cords over a 3 year period.
AFA Table

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