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AB-824 Fire prevention activities.(2015-2016)

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Amended  IN  Senate  July 16, 2015
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 26, 2015


Assembly Bill
No. 824

Introduced by Assembly Member Gatto

February 26, 2015

An act to amend Section 4137 of the Public Resources Code, relating to fire protection.


AB 824, as amended, Gatto. Fire prevention activities.
Existing law requires the Board of Forestry and Fire Protection to classify all lands within the state, without regard to any classification of lands made by or for any federal agency or purpose, for the purpose of determining areas in which the financial responsibility of preventing and suppressing fires is primarily the responsibility of the state.
Existing law requires the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to provide an annual report to the Legislature detailing the department’s fire prevention activities, as described. Existing law requires the report to include specified data and information.
This bill would, for purposes of this report, describe “fire prevention activities” to include coordination and cooperation with the federal government government, as provided. The bill would require the report to include a map of the areas of coordination between the department and the federal government, as provided.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


 Section 4137 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

 (a) For purposes of this section, “fire prevention activities” include, but are not limited to, all of the following:
(1) Fire prevention education.
(2) Hazardous fuel reduction and vegetation management.
(3) Fire investigation.
(4) Civil cost recovery.
(5) Forest and fire law enforcement.
(6) Fire prevention engineering.
(7) Prefire planning.
(8) Risk analysis.
(9) Volunteer programs and partnerships.
(10) Coordination and cooperation with the federal government. government, which shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:
(A) Estimates of state and federal fire prevention costs to fund fire prevention activities of Fire Safe Councils, community emergency response teams developed by local governments, and similar organizations who cooperate with state and federal authorities to reduce the risk of wildfires near communities.
(B) Estimates of the funding needs for forest fuel management programs to reduce urgent fire risks near communities at high risk of wildfire.
(C) Usage of coordinated policies that promote defensible space adjacent to communities where multiple jurisdictions may engage in fire suppression activities.
(b) It is the intent of the Legislature that the year-round staffing and the extension of the workweek that has been provided to the department pursuant to memorandums of understanding with the state will result in significant increases in the department’s current level of fire prevention activities. It is also the intent of the Legislature that the budgetary augmentations for year-round staffing not reduce the reimbursements that the department receives from contracts with local governments for the department to provide local fire protection and emergency services pursuant to Section 4144, commonly referred to as “Amador agreements.”
(c) On or before January 10 of each year, the department shall provide a report to the Legislature, including the budget and fiscal committees of the Assembly and the Senate, in accordance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, detailing the department’s fire prevention activities, including the increased activities described in subdivision (b). The report shall display the fire prevention activities of the previous fiscal year, as well as the information from previous reports for purposes of a comparison of data. The report shall include all of the following:
(1) Fire prevention activities performed by the department on lands designated as state responsibility areas, and by counties, where, pursuant to a contract with the department, a county has agreed to provide fire protection services in state responsibility areas within county boundaries on behalf of the department. The fire prevention activities included in the report pursuant to this paragraph shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:
(A) The number of hours of fire prevention education performed.
(B) The number of defensible space inspections conducted, including statewide totals and totals for each region.
(C) The number of citations issued for noncompliance with Section 4291.
(D) The number of acres treated by mechanical fuel reduction.
(E) The number of acres treated by prescribed burns.
(F) Any other data or qualitative information deemed necessary by the department in order to provide the Legislature with a clear and accurate accounting of fire prevention activities, particularly with regard to variations from one year to the next.
(G) A map of the areas of coordination between the department and the federal government, particularly in areas of high fire hazard severity or in wildlife-urban wildland-urban interface areas.
(2) The fire prevention performance measures described in subparagraphs (A) to (G), inclusive, of paragraph (1) shall be reported for each region annually, including activities performed from December 15 to April 15, inclusive.
(3) Projected fire prevention activities for the following fiscal year.
(4) Information on each of the “Amador agreements” described in subdivision (b), including an annual update on the number of those agreements and reimbursements received from the agreements that are in effect.