SRA Fire-Safe Regulations
The issue of Fire-Safe Roads in Sonoma County is summarized below. If we can get Sonoma County to follow state law, this would restrict development, including cannabis permits, in many areas.
Please support your rural neighbors – get Sonoma County to conform to state fire regulations – to protect our quality of life and unique environment.
Time sensitive – Please Act Now.
State Law for Fire-Safe Roads:
- The state has road Members standards needed for all new development in the State Responsibility Area (SRA), which is most of unincorporated Sonoma County
- New development includes construction, any new use or alteration of the land, use permits (eg cannabis) and manufactured homes.
- Roads used solely for agriculture, mining or harvesting timber are excluded (ie, no residences).
- The state requires that minimum road standards be followed: 20 ft wide roads, no dead-end roads longer than 1 mile (still must be 20 ft wide), no 1-way roads, and no 1-way roads under 12 ft wide or longer than 1/2 mile and not dead-end.
The Problem in Sonoma County
- Sonoma County has a Fire Safety Ordinance that exempts most roads, thus gutting the regulations and allowing development (including cannabis permits) in rural areas on roads that don’t meet the state’s fire-safe standards.
- Although the Sonoma County ordinance is much less stringent that the state’s requirements, the state Board of Forestry (BOF) certified them in 2017 as being equal or more stringent.
- The public records from Sonoma County and BOF provide no basis for certifying the Sonoma County ordinance because its exemptions are illegal.
- We have written to the BOF requesting that it deny the county’s request to certify its ordinance and require Sonoma County to follow CalFire regulations until it adopts a legal ordinance.
- The latest Sonoma County Fire Ordinance is up for certification with committee discussion on Jan 21, 12 noon-3 pm, at 1416 9th Street, with follow up with the full BOS on Jan 22 in Sacramento.
Please attend this meeting on Jan 21-22 if possible!
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
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