On Monday, Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman signed into law LB 634, the Wildfire Control Act of 2013 which authorizes the state to contract for one Single Engine Air Tanker (SEAT). The act also directs that two bases for SEATs be constructed and to acquire one or more mobile SEAT bases. It went into effect immediately after being signed.
The signed bill also directs the Nebraska Forest Service to administer fuel reduction programs and to provide wildfire training for volunteer fire departments and private landowners.
Before the legislation was modified, the original version authorized the state to contract for two SEATS at Chadron and Valentine, but that was eventually cut back to one. Another item removed from the bill was direction to establish a Type 3 Incident Management Team in the state.