Braley Continues Fight for Iowa Communities in Effort to Combat Ash Borer Print
News Releases - Environment & Weather
Written by Kirsten Hartman   
Friday, 28 March 2014 09:00

After the invasive species is identified in nine Iowa counties, Congressman leads bipartisan push to ensure Iowa has same resources as other states  

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today wrote congressional leaders in order to ensure that Iowa would have the same resources as other states as they combat the emerald ash borer—an invasive species that could potentially cause billions of dollars in damage in Iowa.

“Resources were available to other states when they had this problem— and now Iowans deserve the same treatment and I’m going to fight to make sure they get it,” Braley said. “This beetle infestation is a significant cost for communities and homeowners across the state and it’s important we fight to make sure Iowans have the help they need.”

Braley has received bipartisan support for the letter, which is signed by an additional 20 lawmakers, to fight the invasive beetle now confirmed in more than 20 states and at least nine Iowa counties. States that found cases of the beetle in years past were given resources to aid in the mitigation and removal of infected trees, but federal funding has since been drastically cut, leaving states like Iowa with limited resources to combat the problem.

“Because this invasive species has continued to spread each year, this matter should be prioritized and efforts should be targeted to address the damage caused by the emerald ash borer. A failure to do so will undoubtedly result in this costly problem spreading to additional areas, and an even greater demand for financial resources in the future,” Braley’s letter reads.

Each infected ash tree must be removed to maintain safety on public and private land, costing roughly $1000 for the removal and disposal of each tree.  

   

Last month, Braley introduced legislation restoring funding to a program that helps combat the emerald ash borer. 

In January, Braley wrote a letter to Secretary Tom Vilsack at the US Department of Agriculture urging him to take the necessary steps to protect Iowa’s ash trees from the beetle.

Full text of the letter is available below and HERE:



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