Assemblyman Patterson Bill To Help Rural Residents Escape Fire Approved on Assembly Floor

SACRAMENTO – Legislation introduced by Assemblyman Jim Patterson to make it faster and easier to build new escape routes in high fire danger areas in rural neighborhoods has been approved unanimously on the Assembly Floor.

AB 1154 would eliminate California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requirements where a new road is needed in a high fire-hazard zone where there is only one road out.

The Board of Forestry and Fire Protection has identified numerous mountain and foothill neighborhoods in California that only have one exit route. Having an additional road into and out of an area during a fire could potentially save lives and property.

“Deadly, fast-moving wildfires are now the norm,” Patterson said. “We have to do everything in our power to make sure we are prepared to get people out as quickly as possible. If that means building a new exit route, we shouldn’t have to wait for a CEQA report to be completed.”

AB 1154 moves to the Senate Natural Resources Committee.