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Proposed Budget Would Increase Logging Oversight

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The budget would add 49 positions to the California Natural Resources Agency.

The majority of those positions would be filled by wildlife biologists and other field workers that monitor logging and timber harvest plans in the state.

The Department of Fish and Wildlife had experienced most of the staffing reductions over the last few years.

Justin Augustine with the Center for Biological Diversity says for the most part the lack of staff meant little oversight of private lands.

Augustine: "The only way the public and people like myself who follow this stuff can get any meaningful information is when the state's biologists are out there examining what's going on."

The new jobs are funded by a 1-percent tax on lumber and other building wood products sold in California.

The budget also includes new positions at CalFire and the State Water Resources Control Board.

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