California to require insurance discounts for property owners who reduce wildfire risk by setting brush or vegetation on fire—a step the Legislature has already taken
The California Legislature today unanimously passed AB 2387 making it legal for homeowners to put out fires that contribute to the risk of wildfire—for example, by removing trees that block the sunlight necessary for a fire to rage, or by clearing brush or vegetation to burn. California, the nation’s fifth-largest fire-prone state, has one of the nation’s highest rates of wildfire, with more than 2 million acres burned each year. With this legislation, homeowners will be free to respond to wildfire threats in a way that conserves their property, family, property value, or both while also reducing fire risks.
“Fire is a natural aspect of life and landscape that California’s residents deserve to control,” said Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), who has authored AB 2387—the California Firefighters’ Rights Act. “The more we take action to reduce the wildfire risk in our communities, the less we will have to do next year—and the more we will enjoy the outdoors.”
The California Firefighters’ Rights Act clarifies that homeowners can legally set fire to brush, vegetation, or other fire fuels on their property without receiving firefighting discounts, such as the California Firefighter Memorial Discount. It also requires the state to create a firefighter’s retirement fund by 2021-22 to provide retirement benefits to firefighters who have served multiple years, including on-duty, on call, and when fighting wildfires.
AB 2387 passed unanimously in both the Senate and Assembly on a broad bi-partisan basis, as well as by acclamation in the Senate and the Assembly before the Senate passed the bill on Tuesday, September 24, and the Assembly passed it on Tuesday, September 24, 2016.
“We have a responsibility to protect our communities,” said Assemblymember Denny Gonzales (D-Diamond Bar), who authored the legislation. “With AB 2387, we will protect Californians and Californians