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Governor Newsom declares statewide emergency to expedite wildfire prevention

Posted: 3:58 PM, Mar 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-03-22 18:58:56-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Governor Gavin Newsom has declared a statewide emergency to expedite wildfire prevention.

Newsom, in an executive order, pointed to "extreme peril" to life and property."

The order will speed up vegetation clearing and emergency resource deployment. Newsom also says he will set aside $24 million to on local wildfire preparedness programs.

Another $12 million will go toward local response teams. The governor previously said he would spend $40 million on hiring 131 more firefighters and purchasing new engines. The order comes after the deadliest fire in state history broke out in Butte County. The Camp Fire killed 85 people and destroyed nearly 14,000 homes.

CAL FIRE Local 2881 released a statement this morning regarding Governor Newsom's signing of a Proclamation of Emergency regarding wildfires.

"The fires of the past three years have upended and destroyed entire communities, the worst I have seen in my twenty-five year career," said Tim Edwards, President of CAL Fire Local 2881. "While it is difficult for all of us, including the Governor, we support the Governor's action to protect Californians' lives and homes. Fuels management is important and these types of projects the Governor is proposing can save lives and make a difference."
''These circumstances are unusual, unpredictable, unseen in our lifetime, and courageous decisions that sometimes go against the political winds need to be made," Edwards said. "Our commitment to public safety, health and the environment does not wane."