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Congressman Paul Gosar had demanded that the US Forest Service move to award forest thinning contracts to avoid a replay of the Wallow Fire , which last summer burned 530 square miles.

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Congressman blasts forest thinning delay

Ambitious forest thinning project already falling behind schedule

Congressman Paul Gosar has written an insistent demand that the U.S. Forest Service move quickly to award the first set of contracts to thin fire-plagued woodlands as part of the 4-Forests Restoration Initiative (4-FRI). The Forest Service had originally planned in December to award 10-year contracts to thin 300,000 acres in central Arizona. However, although the Forest Service’s regional office in Albuquerque, N.M. has received several bids, it has yet to award contracts for a project advocates say represents the last, best chance to save communities in places like Rim Country from the devastation of firestorms like last summer’s Wallow Fire in the White Mountains.

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