NEVADA COUNTY, July 3, 2019 – On July 2nd, the County of Nevada Office of Emergency services submitted a hazard mitigation grant to help fund the Regional Gold Country Wildfire Mitigation Project. Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) funding is available when authorized under a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration. Due to the extreme wildfires across California, especially around Paradise and Malibu, these funds became available to help reduce or eliminate the losses from future disasters.
If funded, Nevada County’s Regional Gold Country Wildfire Mitigation Project will reduce hazardous fuels in strategic multijurisdictional Wildland Urban Interfaces to prevent loss of life and safeguard critical facilities from wildfires.
“The Regional Gold Country Wildfire Mitigation Project will fund additional opportunities for residents to easily participate in community efforts around wildfire preparedness and prevention, from additional green waste days to chipping programs,” says Captain Jeff Pettitt, Nevada County’s Office of Emergency Services Manager. “We are actively looking for ways to bring new funding to Nevada County to help support these efforts, while not losing sight that the need is immediate.”
Wildfire and its suppression are dangerous and costly; it is the goal of the community to invest in best‐practices, such as defensible space and fuels reduction, to reduce the risk of and prevent wildfire. If funded, project operations will be fulfilled between a joint partnership between County of Nevada and Fire Safe Council of Nevada County. Grant goals shall be attained through a multi‐pronged approach which will focus on (1) Formation of twenty additional Firewise Communities, (2) Defensible Space Chipping Program to treat 4,500 acres, (3) Access and Functional Needs Program to provide defensible space clearing for 140 homes, (4) Green Waste Disposal Program that will be active for two years and (5) a Roadside Defensible Space Program that will clear 202 miles of roadside. The funding request for this project is roughly $5.6 million.
Last year the County of Nevada Office of Emergency Services also applied for two Hazard Mitigation Program grants totaling a possible $10.2 million of additional funding from CAL OES and FEMA. The first HMGP Grant application submitted includes $6.5 million in funding to complete Nevada County’s Community Fire Mitigation Project. The second HMGP Grant application submitted includes $3.7 million to complete the County of Nevada Abatement Program. Both grants have been preliminarily approved and passed their secondary assessments by California Office of Emergency Services in April 2019 and are currently delegated under FEMA’s final review.
To support the submission of the Regional Gold Country Wildfire Mitigation Project, the County has requested a letter of support from local area representatives and governmental organizations. As a result, the County’s Office of Emergency Services would like to thank Congressman LaMalfa’s Office, Congressman McClintock’s Office, CA State Senator Dahle’s Office, Fire Safe Council of Nevada County, Nevada County Consolidated Fire District, City of Grass Valley Fire Department, City of Nevada City Fire Department, Higgins Fire District, Penn Valley Fire Protection District, Truckee Fire Protection District, and the Town of Truckee for their support of the project.
Through these actions and grant partnerships, the Office of Emergency Services is creating avenues to reduce the threat and damage from wildfires in Nevada County.