Senator Bennet pushes for the Tim Hart Wildland Firefighter Pay and Classification Act

Michael Bennet held a roundtable discussion with firefighters regarding pay cuts and what solutions could be an option in the future.
Published: Sep. 23, 2023 at 8:58 PM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - Federal wildland firefighters across the country are facing massive pay cuts due to federal funding running out.

Senator Michael Bennet stopped in Grand Junction Friday, sitting down with firefighters who are feeling the stress and strain that comes from the pay cuts in federal funding.

Senator Bennet wants to ensure that wildland firefighters don’t experience pay cuts, pushing to pass the Tim Hart Wildland Firefighter Pay and Classification Act which would serve as a long-term solution that provides comprehensive benefits for wildland firefighters and raises pay. Not only will the legislation provide a greater base pay but will also include mental health resources.

The bill is named in honor of Tim Hart, a smokejumper from Cody, Wyoming, who tragically lost his life while battling the Eicks fire in New Mexico.

“in many cases doubled the pay or almost doubled the pay of wildland firefighters who have been working for decades, on behalf of the the taxpayers of this country on behalf of the United States, in incredibly dangerous jobs, who had never been paid what they should have been paid. So part of what we’re trying to do is make sure that they continue to get paid.” says Bennet.

Thousands of Federal Wildland Firefighters could walk off the job by the end of the month unless Congress intervenes to prevent the 50% pay cut.