Funds for Wildfire Prevention Efforts – FY2021-2022
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) is accepting applications for its Fire Prevention (FP) Grants Program. There is $120 million in funds available for this program in the fiscal 2021-2022 year. Applications are due by February 9, 2022.
What is the purpose of the FP Program? CAL FIRE’s FP Grants Program provides funding for fire prevention projects and activities in and near fire threatened communities that focus on increasing the protection of people, structures, and communities. Funded activities include hazardous fuels reduction, wildfire prevention planning, and wildfire prevention education with an emphasis on improving public health and safety while reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Who is eligible to apply? Eligible applicants include:
- State Agencies
- Federal Agencies
- Native American Tribes
- Joint Powers Authority (JPA) if the entities involved are eligible applicants
- Local agencies, including:
- City, county, or city and county
- Fire protection districts
- Community services districts
- Water districts
- Resource conservation districts
- Special districts
- Certified local conservation corps
- Fire Safe Councils with a 501(c)(3) designation
- Other qualified non-profit organizations with a 501(c)(3) designation
For-profit companies and individual landowners are not eligible.
What are eligible project types and activities? The FP Grants Program funds three types of activities: hazardous fuels reduction, wildfire prevention planning, and wildfire prevention education. Below are some examples of qualifying projects and activities:
Hazardous Fuels Reduction
- Vegetation clearance in critical locations to reduce wildfire intensity and rate of spread.
- Creation or maintenance of fuel breaks in strategic locations, as identified in CAL FIRE Unit Fire Plans, a Community Wildfire Protection Plan, or similar strategic planning document
- Removal of ladder fuels to reduce the risk of crown fires.
- Creation of community-level fire prevention programs, such as community chipping days, roadside chipping, and green waste bin programs.
- Selective tree removal (thinning) to improve forest health to withstand wildfire.
- Modification of vegetation adjacent to roads to improve public safety for egress of evacuating residents and ingress of responding emergency personnel.
- Reduction of fuel loading around critical infrastructure to maintain continuity of government and other critical services, including, but not limited to fire, police, water, sewer, roads, etc.
- Purchase of fuel modification equipment not to exceed $250,000. Equipment is an item of $5,000 or more per unit cost and has a tangible useful life of more than one year.
- Supplies include items under $5,000 per unit cost. Chainsaws are an example of a supply item and are not considered equipment.
- Projects to improve compliance with defensible space requirements as required by Public Resources Code Section 4291 through increased inspections, assessment, and assistance.
- Projects to reduce the flammability of structures and communities to prevent their ignition.
Wildfire Prevention Planning
- Wildfire risk or related mapping
- Creation or update of strategic wildfire planning documents, such as:
- Evacuation plans;
- Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP);
- Local Hazard Mitigation Plans;
- Safety Elements; or
- Wildfire prevention or mitigation plans.
Wildfire Prevention Education
- Development and implementation of public education and outreach programs. Programs may include technical assistance, workforce recruitment and training, and equipment purchases.
- Workshops, meetings, materials creation, and other educational activities with the purpose of increasing knowledge and awareness of information that could be used to reduce the total number of wildfires, acres burned, and structures lost.
- To educate the public on wildfire mitigation and risk reduction strategies.
- Activities are subject to CAL FIRE approval.
What are additional requirements for this program? One of the FP program objectives is to reduce GHG emissions through wildfire prevention efforts. However, fuel reduction activities also release greenhouse gas emissions at the time of treatment, and CAL FIRE must balance emissions costs and benefits of CAL FIRE programs to comply with the law. Minimizing emissions of fuel treatment activities, using disposal methods other than open burning, and optimizing vegetation health options in the development of treatment prescriptions are important steps in project development to achieve balanced emissions costs and benefits.
Awardees will be required to submit information about project size, vegetation type, location, and treatment area so that CAL FIRE staff may complete emissions calculations for the project. The grant application review process will include consideration of project activities with emissions benefits.
What are the funding levels for this program? There is up to $120 million available for the 2021-2022 FP Grant Program. There are no minimum or maximum award amounts listed in the program’s Procedural Guide.
Is there a cost-sharing or match requirement? Matching funds are not required, but projects that contain matching funds will receive additional priority.
What is the project duration? All project and activity work related to grants must be completed by March 15, 2026. Grant projects may have an earlier completion date but must be completed by March 15, 2026.
When are applications due? Applications must be submitted to the CAL FIRE FP Grants SharePoint folder no later than February 9, 2022 at 3:00 PM PST.
The Procedural Guide can be found here.
For more information on this grant or how to apply with Morrison’s assistance, please contact the Morrison Grants Team by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 530-893-4764.