By Assemblymember Marie Waldron
Local fire departments are essential for public safety. By responding rapidly to wildfires and other emergencies, they save countless lives. Ensuring they have the means to perform this critical task has been a big priority for me in Sacramento.
Through recent budget cycles, I have obtained almost $14 million for fire agencies in many parts of San Diego County.
For example, I acquired funding for the Rincon Fire Department for a new brush fire apparatus and other badly needed upgrades.
Just last week, I was invited to a community ceremony inaugurating the Valley Center Fire Protection District’s new brush fire apparatus, purchased with funds I was able to secure from the state budget. I obtained these funds when California’s budget picture was much brighter, with surpluses in the billions. But this session, despite California’s current deficit, I was able to secure funds for both the San Miguel Fire Department in East County, and North County Fire, serving the Fallbrook area. The two districts will each receive $500k, to be used for new fire stations and future upgrades. And in previous budget cycles, I also secured millions for the Deer Springs Fire Protection District, North County Fire and the San Marcos Fire Department, for new stations and safety enhancements for firefighters.
Last week in Pala I participated in a ceremony recognizing the new partnership between the California Office of Emergency Services (OES) and the Pala Fire Department, establishing a historic mutual aid relationship between the state and a tribal fire department. Though this didn’t involve a funding request, I supported this important agreement in the Assembly. As a result, a new brush fire engine provided by OES will be stationed in Pala to serve that community and surrounding areas.
As your Assembly representative, I do all I can to make sure our local fire fighters have everything they need to do their jobs safely and effectively as they risk their lives saving ours and keeping our region more fire resilient.
Assemblymember Marie Waldron, R- Valley Center, represents the 75th Assembly District.