Sequester not yet affecting govt fire response

WASHINGTON (AP) - Obama administration officials say the automatic budget cuts called "sequestration" have not yet affected the government's ability to fight wildfires.

The Agriculture Department's Jim Hubbard and the Interior Department's James Douglas told a House subcommittee Thursday that the cuts reduced the seasonal workforce and administrative expenses like travel and supplies.

But they warn that sequestration could jeopardize prevention efforts and preparedness in the future.

Their comments come as the cuts take fuller effect on federal government agencies, and just 11 days after 19 firefighters died in Arizona while trying to protect the town of Yarnell.

Douglas also warns that other reductions will mean that fewer dispatchers can be trained to fight fires.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Top Stories

  • Welcome to Thunderdome
    Five position battles will likely be settled at Seahawks training camp

  • Terrifying Escape
    An intoxicated camper caught his quick escape from a Washington wildfire on video

  • Gone to the Robots
    What these airplane-building robots actually mean for Boeing Machinists and their jobs
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from MyNorthwest.com
In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.