Trump threatens to cut FEMA funding for California wildfire relief

10 January, 2019, 01:40 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
  • President Donald Trump

Days after the Camp Fire began burning, Trump threatened to withhold federal payments to California, accusing the Golden State of "poor" forest management.

President Donald Trump on Wednesday announced that he had asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to cut off all money going to help California deal with massive forest fires unless the state adopted his plan of raking leaves.

Trump tweeted that "billions of dollars" are sent to California and with proper forest management, the forest fires "would never happen".

The tweet states that the president has ordered FEMA to stop sending money "unless they get their act together", which the president calls "unlikely". It is a disgraceful situation in lives & money!' Trump added.

November's Camp fire, which obliterated the Northern California town of Paradise, killed 86 people and destroyed more than 13,900 homes.

Newsom, also a Democrat, said at his swearing-in ceremony this week that the Trump administration is "hostile to California's values". That means there is little to no work being done to manage forests while the government is closed, except responding to immediate safety issues.


Trump has repeatedly blamed California officials for failing to manage the state's forests, but numerous areas affected by fire are not forests at all.

Trump started this fire and he'll have to figure out some way to put it out that doesn't just look like a nasty jab at the nation's largest state. If so, it's not working well so far, since Pelosi instantly responded by fingering Trump's buddy and her fellow Californian, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and demanding that he join her in defending their state from Trump's destructive threats.

Daryl Osby, the Los Angeles County Fire Chief, said in November: "We're in extreme climate change now". The utility said it's doing all it can to reduce wildfire risks.

Governor Gavin Newsom proposed US$305 million to remove thousands of acres of forests and brush, expand emergency crews and modernise California's 911 systems.

In a Tuesday event on wildfire safety, Newsom had praised Trump for always providing California with necessary disaster relief funds. The president claims that the state is not properly managing their land, unlike Finland, where they rake the forest floor-at least according to Trump.

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