Thank Your Forester!
Representing the more than 10 million U.S. family forest owners, the undersigned would like to show our support and gratitude to all our state service foresters. In order to ensure these trusted men and women continue to help forest owners across the country, we urge Congress to maintain funding for the Forest Stewardship Program--a program that provides boots-on-the-ground assistance to ensure the health and vitality of America's forests for generations to come.
Families and individuals steward more of America's forests than the federal government or big companies. With the largest area of forest ownership, families and individuals own 35 percent--or 251 million acres--of our nation’s forests. Our forests provide clean air, clean water, recreation, renewable resources that build our homes and communities, and good-paying rural jobs. But we cannot do it alone. Every state has a network of reliable and trusted service foresters that help us make good forest management decisions. Boots-on-the-ground make all the difference.
As private forest owners, we rely on the US Forest Service Forest Stewardship Program, which provides our state foresters with the resources they need for outreach, education, and technical assistance. We are grateful for the reliable assistance our service foresters provide every day. Without this boots-on-ground assistance, forests will fall victim to an ever-increasing list of challenges, such as insects and disease, development pressures, and growing ownership costs.
The planning assistance made possible by the Forest Stewardship Program helps us realize the full potential of our land and provides us the peace-of-mind that our forests will be around for our kids and grandkids to enjoy. We hope that you will maintain current funding for this important program in the FY 2013 appropriations process so that families (and our forests) continue to reap these important benefits. We are happy to answer any questions you may have or provide additional input from the perspective of family forest owners.
Thank you for your time and consideration of this important request.
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