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August 22, 2012 8:57 PM

Debt standoff makes Forest Agency fight all fires

The FLAME — Federal Land Assistance, Management and Enhancement — Act set up separate funds for the Forest Service where surplus firefighting funds in quieter fire years could be saved for big years like this. But Congress took $200 million from the fund in 2011 as a part of the deal to keep the government running in the debt-ceiling standoff. Congress took another $240 million in surplus funds in 2012.But with Congress divided and the pressure to reduce government spending growing, the chances for a supplemental spending bill this year are uncertain.

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