Congressman Greg Walden

Representing the 2nd District of Oregon

Greg Walden calls for swift passage of bill to protect Crooked River Ranch from wildfire

February 15, 2019
Press Release

Greg Walden calls for swift passage of bill to protect Crooked River Ranch from wildfire

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Representative Greg Walden (R-Hood River) today sent a letter to leaders of the House Natural Resources Committee calling for the swift passage of the Crooked River Ranch Fire Protection Act, the bipartisan plan Walden introduced to protect a central Oregon community from wildfire. Walden's letter reads as follows:

"Chairman Grijalva and Ranking Member Bishop,

"With wildfire season rapidly approaching, the community of Crooked River Ranch worries they will become the next Paradise, California. The Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47) which recently passed the Senate, includes the Crooked River Ranch Fire Protection Act (HR 524), my legislation that will ensure needed fire prevention work can get done to protect this community. I urge you to promptly move this public safety legislation to the floor of the House for a vote.

"The Crooked River Ranch Fire Protection Act is an important public safety issue for the more than 5,000 residents of Crooked River Ranch, Oregon. To the west, a Wilderness Study Area (WSA) stands in the way of mechanical fire prevention work, leaving federal land overstocked with juniper and other fuel for fires right next to homes and private land. Harry Ward, the Fire Chief of Crooked River Ranch Fire and Rescue said this “has created a dangerous environment and continues to threaten the people that live here.” This legislation would adjust the WSA boundary, creating space to allow needed fire prevention work to take place and protect the community.

"This important public safety legislation would help give peace of mind to the residents of Crooked River Ranch. Last year, a fire only a few miles away burned 2,000 acres and destroyed two homes in less than a day. The next fire season is mere month away. Thanks to your bipartisan support, we were able to unanimously pass this important legislation in the House last year. We now have an opportunity to pass this into law and help ensure Crooked River Ranch does not become the next Paradise or Santa Rosa. Once again, I urge you to promptly move this legislation to the floor for a vote."