House Committee Approves Fire Mitigation Provisions In Farm Bill

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There's been a lot of talk about fire mitigation in recent weeks as the Waldo Canyon fire raged in El Paso and Teller counties.

As the fire grew dangerously close to the Cedar Heights subdivision, located near the Highway 24 entrance to Garden of the Gods park, firefighters told 11 News the extensive mitigation the subdivision had conducted over the years was playing a huge role in protecting the homes.

Now, the state of Colorado is one step closer to allowing more mitigation on federal land.

Wednesday, the House Committee on Agriculture approved a five-year farm bill with provisions that would allow the removal of trees and reduction of fuels on federal land if it's needed. The bill has also been approved by the Senate.

The bill is now headed to the House for consideration.

Gov. John Hickenlooper has spoken out in favor of the mitigation provisions, saying that they "would be very helpful in addressing the forest conditions that lead to catastrophic wildfires." He has implored Congress to keep those provisions in the bill.

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