ALBUQUERQUE, NM —Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pearce released the following statement in response to today’s announcement from the U.S. Forest Service lifting the suspension of sales of fuelwood permits:
“Today’s announcement lifting the suspension of fuelwood permits only addresses one of the four main problems created by the U.S. district court judge who made a ruling against the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The ruling continues to kill jobs New Mexico desperately needs, puts our wonderful forests more at risk of being destroyed by fire, disease or pests and makes the habitat worse when forests are not maintained. The best laboratory to compare habitats for spotted owls is where the Mescalero Forest which has been thinned joins the Lincoln National Forest which has not been thinned. The spotted owls are moving from the U.S. forests to the thinned areas.
“I will continue to work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to ensure the suspensions are resolved. I have asked USDA to file an appeal as soon as possible and to review the defense submitted to the court by the N.M Director of the United States Forest Service. I have also asked Secretary Perdue and other agency officials to visit N.M. to review the situation.”