Representative Dusty Johnson attends farm bill roundtable

Representative Dusty Johnson hosts a roundtable discussion on the Farm Bill in Spearfish.
Published: Aug. 4, 2022 at 6:16 PM MDT
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SPEARFISH, S.D. (KEVN) -Representative Dusty Johnson visited Spearfish today to attend a Farm Bill roundtable discussion.

When people hear Farm Bill images of corn, cattle or beans may come to mind but the bill also deals a lot with forestry, which was the focus of today’s discussion. Johnson spoke specifically about forest management and the lumber industry.

“There are some of my colleagues on the left who think when a sawmill goes out of business that is a good thing, that is a hugely negative piece of news for the forest because if we want these forest to be resilient to fire if we want them to continue to be unbelievable assets for hundreds of years to come, we have to have these great timber jobs and we have to have this great timber infrastructure in place the policy that we put into the farm bill will help to dictate whether these forests are going to be healthy for years to come or not,” said Johnson.

According to the Forest Service, the Black Hills National Forest is “one of the agency’s highest timber producing forests in the country.”

In addition timber production aspects of the farm bill also touch on wildfire prevention. The Farm Bill is redrafted every five years.

Ben Wudtke, Executive Director for the Black Hills Forest Resource Association stated ”We’re looking forward to the next farm bill in ‘23. We have to be more active on the landscape, we have to giving the agency the tools they need to be able to do the projects that are necessary.”

Johnson will host a similar roundtable Monday in Pierre.

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