Sacramento, California - With wildfires burning across the state - exacerbated by severe drought conditions and extreme weather - Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today declared a state of emergency in California to help mobilize additional firefighting and disaster response resources.
"California's severe drought and extreme weather have turned much of the state into a tinderbox," said Governor Brown. "Our courageous firefighters are on the front lines and we'll do everything we can to help them."
PROCLAMATION OF A STATE OF EMERGENCY
WHEREAS since June 17, 2015, a series of wildfires has started in the Counties of Butte, El Dorado, Humboldt, Lake, Madera, Napa, Nevada, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, Shasta, Solano, Tulare, Tuolumne, and Yolo. These fires have burned thousands of acres of land and continue to burn; and
WHEREAS these fires have destroyed structures and continue to threaten hundreds of homes, necessitating the evacuation of residents; and
WHEREAS the fires have damaged and continue to threaten critical infrastructure and have forced the closure of major highways and local roads; and
WHEREAS on January 17, 2014, I declared a State of Emergency based on the extreme drought that has now persisted in the State for four years; and
WHEREAS the drought conditions have increased the State's risk of wildfires, caused millions of trees to die, and increased the severity and spread of the fires throughout the State; and
WHEREAS extreme weather conditions, lightning storms, and high temperatures have increased the risk and severity of fires throughout the State; and
WHEREAS as a result of the numerous fires burning throughout the State, combined with the drought conditions, California's air quality has significantly deteriorated and impacted public health; and
WHEREAS Federal Fire Management Assistance Grants have been requested and approved for the Wragg Fire burning in the Counties of Napa, Solano, and Yolo and for the North Fire burning in the County of San Bernardino; and
WHEREAS by virtue of the number of fires burning simultaneously, the State's resources have been significantly committed such that the State will seek the assistance and resources of other states, as necessary, pursuant to the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, Public Law 104-321, and sections 179 through 179.9 of the California Government Code; and
WHEREAS the circumstances of these wildfires, by reason of their magnitude, are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment, and facilities of any single local government and require the combined forces of a mutual aid region or regions to combat; and
WHEREAS under the provisions of section 8558(b) of the California Government Code, I find that conditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property exists in California due to these wildfires.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR., Governor of the State of California, in accordance with the authority vested in me by the State Constitution and statutes, including the California Emergency Services Act, and in particular, section 8625 of the California Government Code, HEREBY PROCLAIM A STATE OF EMERGENCY to exist in the State of California due to the wildfires burning throughout the State.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT:
1. All agencies of the state government shall utilize and employ state personnel, equipment, and facilities for the performance of any and all activities consistent with the direction of the Governor's Office of Emergency Services and the State Emergency Plan. Also, all citizens are to heed the advice of emergency officials with regard to this emergency in order to protect their safety.
2. The California National Guard shall mobilize under California Military and Veterans Code section 146 (mobilization in case of catastrophic fires) to support disaster response and relief efforts and coordinate with all relevant state agencies, including the Governor's Office of Emergency Services, and all relevant state and local emergency responders and law enforcement within the impacted areas.
I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this proclamation be filed in the Office of the Secretary of State and that widespread publicity and notice be given of this proclamation.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of California to be affixed this 31st day of July 2015.
EDMUND G. BROWN JR.
Governor of California
Secretary of State