The state has been plagued by different types of catastrophe over the last few months.
The catastrophes in California over the last few months have been fatal to dozens of people, spurring natural disaster preparedness efforts among state lawmakers. Emergencies have been widespread and frequent, revealing a need to improve readiness and response strategies.
Governor Jerry Brown and state lawmakers are seeking to change state regulations to improve disaster response.
The various factors to be included in the state national disaster preparedness changes will include the emergency alert systems, insurance rules as well as debris removal policies. Additional funding will be added to fire protection, as well. Should these new laws pass, they will help to enhance the many layers of protection that are already in place within California law. The goal is to make it easier to prevent some of the dangers associated with natural disasters and to make it easier to recover from them when they do happen.
Among the natural disaster preparedness factors being discussed include property tax relief.
State officials have said that the property tax relief has been designed to be significant. They have also cautioned residents of California that the natural disasters over the last month have not been isolated incidents. As a result of climate change, these types of events may become more commonplace.
“Sadly, what these communities and these members’ residents have experienced is now going to be far too common in California,” said California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones in a recent statement. “We no longer have a fire season. We have year-round fire season.”
Among the state changes include eight bills meant to address insurance coverage issues. They are focused on improving the relationship between insurance policyholders and their insurers. State Senator Mice McGuire (D), represents a number of communities that fell victim to the North Bay fires last fall. McGuire said over one hundred of his constituents had reached out to his office with their “horror stories.”
McGuire explained that residents are having a hard time remembering everything they lost in the fire. In some situations it insurance companies require them to provide receipts as proof of ownership and they are unable to do so.
“We’re getting calls from survivors literally experiencing PTSD, people having to relive the most horrific night of their lives and recall and attempt to put a price on their most priceless possessions,” said McGuire. “It’s simply too much to ask,” he added, underscoring the need for improved natural disaster preparedness and insurance company regulations.