The 21-member California-Nevada Tahoe Basin Fire Commission meets/met today in Tahoe City to debate the pros and cons of declaring states of emergency.
California Fire Marshall Kate Dargan is a commission co-chair.
“For the basin person living here, what an emergency declaration might mean is: More staffing, more resources and more capacity – if the funding can be identified to provide them.”
And finding that funding is the key to just about everything the commission could suggest.
An emergency declaration frees up state dollars and gives the area the ability to request federal funds. It can also give projects shortcuts around state laws – including environmental regulations – to get them done more quickly.
The commission has until March of next year to come up with a list of recommended strategies. It’ll present that list to both states’ governors, who can put them in place before next year’s fire season.