The so-called wildfire season in the West used to be only a few months long, but over the last five years or so, the fires have grown bigger, more intense, much more dangerous and the fire season has expanded so that now wildfire season is a misnomer. It's truly a wildfire year.. Now scientists tell us we can't stop wildfires from happening. They are a natural thing. What we can do is begin the process of reducing the catastrophic nature of these fires.That’s Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announcing a new 10 year plan designed to help achieve that goal. Later, he told the House Agriculture Committee the plan is to do more much more of what they call treating the land, in other words, thinning out of forests, removing dead trees and brush, improving the health of forests and in doing so, cutting down on the fuel level Now it costs money to do this work. And over the last few years, the Forest Service has had to take money from that budget area and spend it over on fighting the ever growing number of wildfires. But Agriculture Secretary Vilsack says the recently passed infrastructure bill has provided nearly $3 billion to do some of this treatment work to treat an extra 20 million acres of national forest lands and to help treat another $30 million of land owned by the states or tribes or other private owners. Speaker3: And it's going to be focused on the areas of highest risk to communities. So hopefully over time, people will begin to see fewer catastrophic fires and certainly less risk to people and property and to key forest areas. Speaker1: Now remember, though, this is a 10 year plan. And Vilsack says the money in the infrastructure bill will likely cover the work done for the first two to three years. Speaker3: The question is whether or not we are in a position to have that same level of funding and support for years four or five, six, seven, eight, nine and 10, because it's going to take a while for us to get the hazardous fuel reduction down, it's going to take us a while to do the reforestation and the restoration work that needs to be done in areas that have already been impacted by fire. Speaker1: But it should not take a while or very long to get started on this work. First step identifying the areas of greatest risk and getting started on those areas soon.