Upcoming legislation from a bipartisan group of California State Legislatures is addressing a key issue in the same old fashion: the ongoing fight against wildfires in the state. It spends more money to hire more civil servants, but can’t deal with why the current budget isn’t doing that job.
The bill hasn’t been introduced yet, so we need to check the details, but the basic parameters are widely reported. Senator Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield, Mike McGuire, D-Healdsburg, and Brian Dahle, R-Beaver will add 1,124 permanent and seasonal firefighters to the California Department of Forestry and Fire (Cal Fire). I suggested that.
This measure requires the assignment of three firefighters to all engines (increasing the current average of 2.7) and requires the completion of a staffing survey. McGuire states that this spending is just a “down payment” for the need to hire more firefighters.
It is difficult to oppose laws that enhance the state’s firefighting capacity, especially after several years of harsh firefighting seasons. McGuire also introduced a law applying the Firefighters’ Procedure Rights Code to Seasonal Workers (Senate Bill 206), signed by Governor Gavin Newsom. This enhances the protection of the union.
Everyone appreciates the tough work of firefighters, but Cal Fire faces the same problems that plague all bureaucracy.
Due to the unusually high labor costs, CalFire has relied on the minimum wage prisoner firefighters. In June, Newsome decided to close one of California’s main training facilities for prisoner firefighters. This makes the state more dependent on high-paying union members.
The median compensation for state firefighters, including overtime and allowances, is about $ 150,000 per year (despite the relatively low base salary), and the average for cities and counties is much higher. Many firefighters receive a stunning salary. Cal Fire, meanwhile, is resisting the deployment of low-cost measures (such as the enforcement of “defensive space” laws).
Although not against increasing the number of firefighters themselves, the state must first evaluate how it is spending its current budget and consider alternatives.
Bipartisan bill throws money at fire problem – Press Telegram Source link Bipartisan bill throws money at fire problem – Press Telegram