Interior Deputy Secretary Connor to Visit National Interagency Fire Center
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Tuesday, August 26, 2014, Deputy Secretary of the Interior Mike Connor will visit the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) to meet with leaders of the federal interagency fire leadership team and receive briefings on the current fire situation, increasing costs of wildland fire and the challenges presented by a changing climate and evolving fire environment. News media availability with Deputy Secretary Connor will be held at 1 p.m. MST.
During his visit, Connor will underscore Interior’s support for the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy and the President’s Fiscal Year 2015 budget proposal to budget fire suppression costs the same as other natural disasters. The President’s budget request, modeled on the current disaster cap that funds FEMA and disaster programs, would allow for a balanced suppression and proactive fuels management and restoration program, with flexibility to accommodate peak fire seasons. The proposal tracks closely with legislation authored by Oregon Senator Ron Wyden, Senator Mike Crapo of Idaho and Representatives Mike Simpson of Idaho and Kurt Schrader of Oregon.
Connor’s visit follows Secretary Sally Jewell’s tour of the Northern California Geographic Area Coordination Center (North Ops) in Redding, Calif., where she met with members of the interagency fire leadership team, employees from the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service and toured on-the-ground fuels management projects in the surrounding area.
NIFC Predictive Services anticipate that above normal fire potential will continue across much of the West Coast states of California, Oregon and Washington in August and through most of September.
Mike Connor, Deputy Secretary of the Interior
Ron Dunton, BLM Assistant Director, Fire and Aviation
News media availability with Interior Deputy Secretary Mike Connor
Tuesday, August 26, 2014; media availability at 1 p.m. MST
Jack Wilson Building Multipurpose Room
National Interagency Fire Center
3822 Development Avenue
Boise, Idaho 83705-5354
Media interested in attending the media availability are encouraged to RSVP by calling Randy Eardley at NIFC, 208-871-7527.