BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- An Idaho congressman says the U.S. Department of Agriculture will spend an additional $14 million on damaged Idaho forests where bark beetles have long pestered trees.

Rep. Walt Minnick, D-Idaho, announced the funding Thursday.

Minnick, a former wood-products company executive, says he has been working with Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, to raise awareness about the threat to Idaho forests.

Minnick says the additional funding will accelerate watershed improvements, restore forest health and treat areas affected by the tiny bugs.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $40 million last month for Rocky Mountain states where beetles have killed more than 2 million acres of pine trees, with emphasis on Colorado, Wyoming and South Dakota.

Copyright 2010 The AP.

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