Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture visit Boise

The secretary of the Interior and Agriculture departments answered questions about climate change and immigration.

BOISE - U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue signed a joint memorandum Friday vowing to work together on a state, federal and local level to better manage our public lands and alleviate wildfires.

“When we work as a group we are stronger for it,” said Zinke.

However, after the document was signed, both secretaries were confronted about the United States withdrawing from the Paris Accord and how that action would impact Idaho and the nation's ability to manage wildfires and public lands.

“The president’s decision was based on a bad deal, let’s face it it wasn't about climate change. It was about the deal that was negotiated,” said Zinke.

“Withdrawing from the accord, I agree with Secretary Zinke, it was poorly drafted to the disadvantage of the United States of America. It does nothing to preclude us as Americans, as a Forest Service, as a BLM, as the Department of Interior, from managing the best practices for managing our fires and managing our forests for healthy,” said Perdue.

Along with climate change, immigration has been a hot button issue nationally and locally in Idaho when it comes to the agriculture industry.

Perdue says he is working with an attorney out of Nebraska to address labor issues with the Farm Bureau.

“We had a round table this morning that Governor Otter hosted at the Capitol, and dairy producers talked about how there are a lot of industries that have year-round needs, and I hope to deliver to the president a policy that he feels good about, and the United States of America feels good about, because there are jobs out there that we cannot find American workers to fulfill,” said Perdue.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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