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treeswarper
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PostFri Oct 21, 2022 7:15 pm 
This might make people even more reluctant to implement prescribed burns. https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2022/10/21/oregon-arrest-forest-service-fire/

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Randito
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PostFri Oct 21, 2022 9:56 pm 
This incident seems like political stunt by the Grant County sheriff.

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CS
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PostFri Oct 21, 2022 10:17 pm 
So many puns come to mind…

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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 1:10 am 
https://www.opb.org/article/2022/10/20/grant-county-arrest-sheriff-forest-service-employee-malheur-national-oregon/

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altasnob
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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 6:15 am 
Does the Forest Service compensate landowners when they accidentally burn their land? Or is the land owner just sol? In the unlikely event that this does result in a criminal conviction for the forest service employee, the court would have the ability to order the employee pay restitution to the land owners. And I assume the USFS would then pick up the tab for it, even though they are not the defendant.

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treeswarper
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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 6:55 am 
I'm not a lawyer. I'd think that the land owner would file a claim to get compensation. Then, if that wasn't good, a lawsuit would be next. I wonder how closely they work with adjacent landowners in that area, or if there can even be a working relationship? If this arrest results in a conviction, you can bet burning will be affected. One thing that might be an issue is the "meeting the target" urge. Targets are the estimated and budgeted acreage that is planned to be burned in a year. Employees can be rewarded if they meet or exceed the target. Maybe that pressure ought to be relaxed a bit?

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altasnob
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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 7:03 am 
I highly doubt the forest service employee will be charged with a crime, but you never know. This is Grant County, Oregon, which has a history of hating the federal government. Somewhat scary when a sheriff, the prosecutor, the judge, and the jurors, all hate the federal government and could convict a federal employee just doing their job out of spite. And there is nothing that people outside this community can do to stop this. The key to this case is did the forest service employee act "recklessly." If they were simply following the advice of other employees at the USFS, they were not acting recklessly. But if all the other USFS employees, scientists, and everyone working on the controlled burn were saying don't do the controlled burn right now, and this USFS employee ignored their advice and went ahead, then maybe the forest service employee did act recklessly. I can't imagine the USFS recklessly ignoring the advice of other USFS employees. If I was the USFS employee who was arrested, I would immediately be filing a lawsuit against the sheriff and county for false arrest. If the sheriff wants a publicity stunt, I would give them a publicity stunt. And when I won my lawsuit, I would make sure all the citizens of Grant County know that they are the ones paying me with their tax dollars, and that their sheriff is to blame. Here are the elements of the crime the forest service employee was arrested for: ORS 164.335 Reckless burning (1) A person commits the crime of reckless burning if the person recklessly damages property of another by fire or explosion. (2) Reckless burning is a Class A misdemeanor.

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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 8:28 am 
Quote:
We asked the Sheriff about the report that the arrest was made to de-escalate a tense situation going on with armed private landowners. “They may have been armed,” he said, “but we are not aware of that. There were definitely some landowners that were highly upset.”

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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 8:47 am 
My understanding is that the site administrator here frowns on any sort of political discussions, so I will limit my comment to saying only that we are talking about a tiny little spot on the planet where some people don't believe they are beholden to the same rules as everyone else.

"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."

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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 8:50 am 
I’m fifty years out of date, in another setting. We had a several acres of stopover on the St Joe, in checkerboard portion from old RR allotments. The senior forestry types were talking amongst themselves that in negotiation with the RR that the scrubby cull trees would magically become valuable timber. So at least in that setting the USFS expected some settlement. I assume RR occasionally burned a little government land too.

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treeswarper
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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 12:01 pm 
catsp wrote:
Quote:
We asked the Sheriff about the report that the arrest was made to de-escalate a tense situation going on with armed private landowners. “They may have been armed,” he said, “but we are not aware of that. There were definitely some landowners that were highly upset.”
Am I blind? I'm not seeing this in the articles above. What is the source?

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Randito
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PostSat Oct 22, 2022 12:07 pm 
treeswarper wrote:
catsp wrote:
Quote:
We asked the Sheriff about the report that the arrest was made to de-escalate a tense situation going on with armed private landowners. “They may have been armed,” he said, “but we are not aware of that. There were definitely some landowners that were highly upset.”
Am I blind? I'm not seeing this in the articles above. What is the source?
I did a google search of the quoted text and found this: https://wildfiretoday.com/tag/malheur-national-forest/ About 2/3 of the way down that page.

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PostWed Oct 26, 2022 5:55 am 
Forest Service boss decries arrest of worker in planned burn
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In a message, posted Monday to all the U.S. Forest Service’s more than 25,000 employees, Moore said he won’t “stand idly by without fully defending the Burn Boss and all employees carrying out their official duties as federal employees.” “In my opinion, this arrest was highly inappropriate under these circumstances,” Moore said on the agency’s website.
https://apnews.com/article/fires-oregon-arrests-forests-climate-and-environment-c4dfe89d8beae9d2712b8e6c787e9a6c

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