Tester stands up for wildland firefighters, pushes Obama Administration

(U.S. Senate)-Senator Jon Tester today released the following statement in response to the Obama Administration’s failure to properly execute Tester’s bipartisan Land Management Workforce Flexibility Act, which was signed into law last year:

“I am concerned that the Obama Administration is not correctly interpreting the intent of this bipartisan bill, which could cost hard-working firefighters a shot at advancing their careers. We need to make sure that the intent of this bill is followed so that we’re not undermining our nation’s firefighters, and other seasonal employees, and preventing the government from strengthening the federal workforce.”

Tester’s bill allows temporary seasonal federal employees to compete for vacant permanent positions in the federal workforce. Many temporary seasonal employees, including wildland firefighters, are currently cut off from many career advancement opportunities that are available to permanent seasonal employees.

The bill also removes barriers in the current hiring system that lead to higher training costs and a less safe workforce.

Tester’s bipartisan Land Management Workforce Flexibility Act unanimously passed Congress and is supported by many groups, including the International Association of Fire Fighters, the American Federation of Government Employees, the National Association of Government Employees, the Association of National Park Rangers and the National Federation of Federal Employees.