06/19/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/19/2017 14:49
Rapp's Good Neighbor Legislation to Enhance Forest Management in Allegheny National Forest Advances to PA Senate
House Bill 1494 would authorize the Commonwealth to enter into a Good Neighbor Agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to allow the state to help manage the forest through timber harvesting, promoting forest regeneration, and restoring or improving habitats.
'With the majority of the Allegheny National Forest located in my legislative district, I could not be more pleased with the advancement of this legislation that is specifically designed to have our a state play a greater role in the daily management of this extremely valuable asset,' said Rapp, who is a member of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee and the legislative Timber Caucus. 'We all stand to benefit by working together to ensure that the thousands upon thousands of jobs that are directly dependent on the harvesting of forest products continue to grow and thrive right here at home.'
In addition to her standing committee assignments, Rapp also serves as the House legislative member on both the Legislative Forestry Task Force and the Pennsylvania Hardwoods Development Council.
Good Neighbor Agreements were first used in Colorado and Utah and were authorized nationwide as part of the 2014 Farm Bill. Recognizing the potential benefits offered by such agreements, the members of the Commonwealth's Green Ribbon Task Force on Forest Products, Conservation and Jobs listed the agreement among its top recommendations.
Alleghany National Forest is approximately 517,000 acres in size and includes land in Warren, Forest, Elk, and McKean counties.
House Bill 1494 now advances to the Senate for consideration.