MISSOULA- Friday morning Senator Steve Daines joined wildfire preparedness officials and wildland rural firefighters for a round table discussion on this coming fire season, as well as new legislation to benefit wildland firefighters.
Issues that were heard today ranged from having the proper job classification, to retirement benefits, as well as compensation during an injury.
Wildland fighter fighters and Federal Wildland Fire Service association executives had the chance to sit down with Senator Daines to share concerns and desires for Daines to take back to Washington D.C., with him.
Currently working on a bill with Washington Senator Maria Cantwell to benefit wildland firefighters, Daines hopes to give these firefighters what they feel they deserve.
"We are going to change their job title, and by doing so like we heard today, it's going to help them better able to recruit and retain these men and women who risk their lives for us every day during the wildfire season,” said Senator Daines.
Technically these wildland firefighters have a title of “foresty technicians”, and by taking this piece of bipartisan legislation to congress and giving them the official title of "firefighter, Daines says we'll be able to protect them, like they protect the community every day.
With fire season fast approaching, this bill is one of two that Senator Daines will try to pass in Washington, and we'll make sure to keep you updated on this matter.