State assistance will once again be made available for fire cleanup in Lake County.
On Tuesday, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, state Sen. Mike McGuire and Assemblyman Bill Dodd announced that state funding will be provided under the California Disaster Assistance Act to fund debris cleanup and removal in the neighborhoods of the Clayton fire impact zone similar to what occurred following last year’s Valley fire.
The Clayton fire, the fourth devastating wildfire to hit Lake County in the last 14 months, burned nearly 4,000 acres and destroyed 299 structures, including 203 homes and eight commercial buildings.
Leading into Tuesday's announcement, assessments were completed over the last several weeks by the Office of Emergency Services, the State Department of Toxic Substance Control and local authorities in the impacted Lower Lake neighborhoods.
State-sanctioned debris removal teams will be advancing into Lake County in the next few weeks, officials said.
Sen. McGuire made it a priority – despite the fact the Clayton fire won’t likely be declared a federal disaster – to move assistance from the state for debris removal and cleanup into Lake County.
This desperately needed assistance will ensure the health and safety of local residents living near or in the areas devastated by the Clayton fire in the years to come.
“A staggering 22 percent of Lake County’s total land mass burned over the past 14 months, from the Rocky, Jerusalem, Valley and now the Clayton Fire,” Sen. McGuire said. “Lake County is already suffering from these devastating events and we are committed to working day and night to help the community recover and rebuild stronger than ever. Both CalOES and CalRecycle did amazing work after the Valley fire in Lake County – moving out millions of pounds of debris – and we are grateful to partner with them again to assist in Lower Lake.”
CalRecycle – the state agency responsible for debris cleanup and removal – will be coming in to begin work in the Lower Lake area in the coming weeks. Currently, the State Department of Toxic Substances Control is in the Lower Lake working remediation.
After the Valley fire, CalRecycle contracted debris removal crews to clear residential properties in record time.
With the damage left by the Clayton fire, CalRecycle will once again manage the debris removal and site cleanups.
“This is a huge benefit for our community – CalRecycle will be able to come in and remove the debris in a timely manner and that’s what we really need right now in order to expedite the rebuilding process,” Lake County Supervisor Rob Brown said. “We are grateful for the unwavering advocacy of Sen. McGuire and Assemblymember Dodd to get this agreement approved.”
Lake County officially requested assistance from the state for debris cleanup, which is estimated to cost more than $3 million in the Clayton fire impact zone.
Official information blog for the Lake County Office of Emergency Services