Polis wildfire disaster relief bill provisions pass House | VailDaily.com

Polis wildfire disaster relief bill provisions pass House

Daily staff report

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Jared Polis, who represents a portion of Eagle County and Dr. Raul Ruiz, of California, passed key provisions of the Wildfire Prevention Act of 2015, in the broader Federal Emergency Management Agency Disaster Assistance Reform Act. The FEMA Disaster Assistance Reform Act of 2015 was a bipartisan piece of legislation that would authorize $947 million annually from fiscal 2016 through 2018 for all disasters. The Wildfire Prevention Act included in this comprehensive legislation acknowledges wildfires as an eligible incident for post-disaster mitigation resources.

“Under current law, wildfires are not considered natural disasters, which makes it impossible for communities to draw down federal resources to control and respond to these devastating catastrophes,” said Polis.

With the passage of the bill’s provisions, states, tribes, and local communities will qualify to receive assistance grants for up to 15 percent of the total cost of fire suppression efforts. This extra amount for mitigation is cost-shared on a 75 percent federal, 25 percent state and local basis.

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