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June 09, 2014 02:47 PM

Limited Budgets Affect Forest Service SD Programs

Sioux Falls, SD

Limited federal firefighting budgets have affected the U.S. Forest Service's ability to finish some projects in South Dakota.

A federal report released Monday shows the Forest Service has been unable to complete at least seven projects in the state over the last two fiscal years.

The report explains how funding for local wildfire preparedness, forest restoration and other activities in almost every state has been used to fight fires when wildfire suppression budgets didn't fully cover firefighting costs during the fiscal years 2012 and 2013.

Among the postponed plans in South Dakota is a $5,000 project to clear downfall and conduct related trail maintenance in areas affected by the bark beetle. A $160,000 project to reduce hazard trees, decommission roads and conduct travel management was also deferred.

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