Department of Interior

Latest Sequester Scare Tactic: Not Enough Firefighters to Fight Wildfire

7.5 percent cut to the Forest Service means 500 fewer firefighters, the Interior Secretary claimed

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The U.S. is heading into a tough wildfire season made even more challenging because budget cuts mean fewer firefighters to battle blazes, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said Monday.

Another dry year is creating the potential for another extreme summer of forest and range fires, Jewell said after spending the past two days touring the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise. She was joined by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, who said a 7.5 percent cut to the 2013 U.S. Forest Service budget means 500 fewer firefighters on the ground this year.

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