Lane County sets aside more money for wildfire response

Lane County is freeing up $1 million to respond to the Holiday Farm Fire.

Posted: Sep 29, 2020 10:50 AM
Updated: Sep 29, 2020 11:03 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Lane County is freeing up $1 million to respond to the Holiday Farm Fire.

The Lane County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to increase the amount of money to be spent on wildfire response, which had previously been capped at $500,000.

The additional money will cover expenses like employee overtime, equipment and paying for storage of all the donated materials for evacuees. 

"The cost of the damage from this fire has piled up rather quickly,” said Lane County Administrator Steve Mokrohisky. “So this delegation is to allow the county administrator to expend additional resources in response to the needs from this fire.”

Initial assessments show that public agencies in Lane County sustained more than $24 million in damage from the fire, a figure that does not include damage to people's homes or private businesses.

The board also voted on Tuesday to move forward with an agreement with the State of Oregon that will allow for cleanup of hazardous debris at no cost to homeowners.

FEMA is expected to reimburse the county for 75% of the wildfire recovery costs, but that money will not be made available for well over a year.

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