Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Prescribed burning bill clears NJ Assembly committee

Prescribed Burn at Schiff Nature Preserve Feb 27 2012
Sometimes the best way to fight fire is with fire.

That's the proven thinking behind prescribed burning or controlled burning. It's the tool
used by the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service to burn, in advance, sections of forest undergrowth to remove the fuel that would allow a wildfire to build power and spread.

Yesterday, both environmentalists and farmers testified in support of A-329 (Dancer), legislation that would encourage the use of the practice by giving landowners, prescribed burn managers and state employees protection against liability for damages or injury possibly resulting from a prescribed burn.

The bill does so by declaring that properly conducted prescribed burns are deemed to be
in the public interest and thus would not constitute arson, trespass, or a public or private nuisance nor would they be considered to be air-pollution violations.

To learn more about the subject, view our interview below with Jaclyn Rhoads, Director for Conservation Policy at the Pinelands Preservation Alliance and Bill Cutts, a New Jersey cranberry grower.

Here's a copy of A-329 before amendments were added yesterday in committee.
The amendments were not available at the time that this story was posted.

Disclosure: Our government relations firm, Brill Public Affairs, represents
the New Jersey Farm Bureau which supports A-329.

Stewardship Roundtable on prescribed burning
Pinelands Preservation Brilliance: Fire in the Pines 

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