CALIFORNIA A bill by senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) that aims to reduce wildfire devastation by determining building standards in high fire risk areas passed with a bipartisan 7-0 vote on Wednesday in the Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee. It will now head to the Assembly Local Government Committee, according to a press release.
SB 182 will require that communities update their general plans so they identify high risk fire areas, require fire-prone communities to have an outdoor warning system, require localities to comply with wildfire prevention efforts like vegetation management and local fire plans, and will direct cities and counties to determine a plan for how to pay for the hardening of existing homes and construction projects that will be at risk of wildfires. Also, the bill will prohibit cities and counties from approving new construction projects unless they meet wildfire risk reduction standards.
Ms. Jackson stated that her bill will “ensure that preventing wildfires becomes an intrinsic part of our local planning process and that we help prevent wildfire and its devastation by design, without compromising on our housing goals.”