Sanchez proposes creating jobs by fixing forests


In an effort reminiscent of the Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930s, Rep. Linda Sanchez, D-Lakewood, is pushing legislation to provide billions of federal dollars for repair and construction projects in the country's national parks and forests.

Sanchez is requesting the government spend $4.75 billion fixing crumbling infrastructure on public lands, including the Angeles National Forest, a move she says would create some 50,000 jobs.

…"Rep. Sanchez's act would create desirable outdoor jobs, provide better facilities for people using the parks and forests, and protect fish and wildlife that live there," said Matt Dietz, an ecologist for The Wilderness Society. "It's a win-win-win situation."

…The Wilderness Society is hoping the funds could be used to decommission some roads in national parks and forests that were once used to extract resources, but Dietz said are no longer necessary.

"There are plenty of roads open for driving, we just are trying to remove the ones that are no longer necessary, so that what maintenance money there is could be used to maintain the ones that are used," he said.