Secretaries Zinke & Perdue talk forestry, public lands in Boise

Posted at 5:39 PM, Jun 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-02 19:39:11-04

Leaders of the two largest public land agencies in the United States made a stop in Boise Friday, June 2, to talk about forestry and public lands. 

Teamwork and collaboration were the main points of discussion, as Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke talked about how to best protect communities and manage public lands.

"We want to be the  department that is the advocacy, not the adversary," Zinke said. "So when you see a [Bureau of Land Management] BLM truck out there... I want people to think about land management, not law enforcement."

From clean technology and energy, to a snapshop of American agriculture, both men agreed the future is bright.

"There are a variety of jobs in agriculture, aside from just agriculture production, that provide many opportunities for young people," Perdue said. 

Afterwards, the two joned Governor Butch Otter at the National Interagency Fire Center, where they signed a memorandum highlighting the importance of inter-departmental collaboration, as they anticipate the 2017 wildfire season to be another challenging year.

"I think we're planting a tree for the future cooperation between the Departments of Agriculture and Interior for the betterment of our ecology," Perdue said. 

That memorandum was sent to wildland fire leadership, and the secretaries say they're looking forward to improving operational efficiency to better support firefighters.