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File #: 20-1197    Version: 1
Type: Agenda Item Status: Approved
File created: 9/4/2020 In control: Board of Supervisors
On agenda: 9/22/2020 Final action: 9/22/2020
Title: Supervisor Veerkamp and Supervisor Parlin recommending the Board authorize the Chair to sign a letter to United States Senator Dianne Feinstein, with a copy sent to Congressman Tom McClintock, in support of the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020 (S. 4431), that was introduced by Senator Feinstein (California) and Senator Steve Daines (Montana). FUNDING: N/A
Attachments: 1. A - Feinstein Letter to El Dorado County, 2. B - Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act summary, 3. C - Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act, 4. D - Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act section-by-section, 5. E - Wildfire Safety Act Support Letter, 6. Executed Support Letter Dianne Feinstein
Title
Supervisor Veerkamp and Supervisor Parlin recommending the Board authorize the Chair to sign a letter to United States Senator Dianne Feinstein, with a copy sent to Congressman Tom McClintock, in support of the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020 (S. 4431), that was introduced by Senator Feinstein (California) and Senator Steve Daines (Montana).

FUNDING: N/A
Body
DISCUSSION / BACKGROUND
The Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act is a bipartisan bill co-authored by Senator Feinstein and Senator Daines to help communities prepare for and respond to wildfires. The following is a summary of the four primary initiatives of the bill.

1) Reducing wildfire risks in federal forests

The bill would authorize the Forest Service to undertake three priority wildfire mitigation projects that would be limited to 75,000 acres in size, and the federal government would be authorized to carry out expedited activities to protect lives and property from wildfires, such as the installation of fuel breaks, clearing dead and dying trees, and controlled burning.

The bill includes a technical fix to ensure that the Forest Service consults with the Fish and Wildlife Service when new public peer-reviewed research demonstrates potential harm to threatened or endangered species.

The bill would allow for expedited environmental reviews regarding the installation of fuel breaks near existing roads, trails, transmission lines and pipelines.

The bill would codify an existing administrative practice that allows the Forest Service to expedite hazardous fuel removal projects in emergency situations where it is immediately necessary to protect life, property, or natural and cultural resources.

2) Biomass Facilities

The bill would establish a new $100 million biomass infrastructure program. This would provide grant funding to build biomass facilities near forests that
are at risk of wildfire and to offset the cost of transporting dead and dying trees out of high-hazard f...

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