Senator Brian Dahle is pleased to announce his Senate Bill 709 made it to the Governor’s desk after passing through the legislative process.
SB 709 is a crucial element of forest management, especially in light of the recent catastrophic wildfires, as it allows mills the opportunity to salvage burnt trees while they still have value.
“Timber harvesting is excellent, scientifically-proven forest stewardship that should be encouraged when planning wildfire mitigation and overall forest health sustainability,” said Senator Dahle.
Timber Harvesting Plans (THPs) are environmental review documents submitted by landowners to CalFIRE outlining what timber the land owner desires to harvest, how it will be harvested, and the steps taken to avoid damage to the environment. THPs are prepared by a licensed Registered Professional Foresters (RPF) and range from 100-500 pages.
Dahle’s measure allows approved THPs expiring in 2021 and 2022 to be extended for a period of two years, and could potentially save landowners thousands of dollars having to prepare a new THP.
“SB 709 is a common sense measure to reduce the cost and complexity of reducing wildfire fuels,” Dahle continued.
Many mills are taking in salvaged harvested products from California’s massive wildfires. Consequently, it is expected that many existing THPs will expire –thereby reducing operations designed to reduce forest fuels in high fire danger areas. These delays will slow the pace and scale of projects that the state desperately needs in order to prevent and mitigate future wildfires.
If signed into law, SB 709 extends the Z’Berg-Nejedly Forest Practice Act of 1973, and would become effective January 1, 2022.