Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden was in the state Friday visiting several wildfires. His stops included touring the Eagle Creek Fire in the Columbia River Gorge, and the Jones Fire in Lane County.
Speaking at a press conference, Senator Wyden said lawmakers in Washington need to be doing more to pay for firefighting prevention efforts.
"If you short change fire prevention," Wyden said, "what happens is you may save money today but you’re gonna spend a whole lot more down the road when fires what would’ve been smaller become infernos."
Federal lawmakers passed a spending package this week that included billions of dollars in hurricane relief — and 100 million dollars for wildfire relief in the west.
Wyden says Washington needs to consider a disaster relief funding package that addresses regular fires in the Northwest.