The Oakland Firesafe Council has sent letters to Senator Nancy Skinner, Assemblymember Buffy Wicks and the authors and coauthors of two state senate bills that call for additional housing in heretofore single family housing zones. SB9 allows for accessory dwelling units (ADUs) and SB10 allows for up to 4 multiple units on a single lot.
The two bills exempt ADUs in the very high fire severity zone, but the legislation as it now stands only worsens public safety in the rest of the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) and it is not clear that they appliy to cities and towns in the local responsibility areas. They do not address the need for speedy evacuation along the entire evacuation route (both in very high and high hazard zones), and the fact that even with structures meeting Fire Code for hardened homes, most structures with limited setbacks only add to the fuel load in our fire prone neighborhoods.
The two bills go before the Assembly Appropriations committee in August. OFSC has asked the legislators to amend the bills to correct the issues that only make the wildfire risk worse.
Click here for a copy of the letter to Senator Nancy Skinner.