Butte County BOS votes to forgive loans for Concow residents who lost homes to fire twice

Butte County Sheriff, Kory Honea, waving as the crowd erupts in applause at the Butte County Board of Supervisors meeting.

The Butte County Board of Supervisors met on Tuesday to discuss Camp Fire concerns amid the devastation and destruction. In addition the Butte County Sheriff, Kory Honea, brought some good news about the end of evacuation orders to supervisors. Honea says they are working to get the rest of the evacuation order lifted by the end of this week, or as late as the beginning of next week.

The Camp Fire that destroyed homes and took lives across Butte County has left a path of uncertainty for thousands, especially residents who are experiencing loss from a wildfire for a second time. On the agenda Tuesday, was a proposal for relief of disaster recovery initiative loans on homes destroyed in 2008 from the Butte Lightning Complex that raged through Concow. The Supervisors unanimously voted to approve CDBG DRI loans, Community Development Block Grant dollars through Disaster Recovery Initiative, to be relieved in full if a home that was destroyed in 2008 was recently destroyed for a second time in the Camp Fire.

Casey Hatcher, the Economic and Community Development Manager for Butte County, says there are about 25 people living in the Concow and Yankee Hill area that received these loans to rebuild their home after the 2008 fire. It is unclear how many of them lost their home for a second time, in the Camp Fire. "We can't imagine what it is like to lose your home two times in the course of 10 years," Hatcher said. "We want to help the community rebuild, we want to help these property owners be able to rebuild," Hatcher added.

"The people that were burned out in that first fire and now burned out in the second fire, that's got to be a horrible devastation point for those people," said Pete Moak, a longtime Concow resident. "Now maybe with all our partnerships and the knowledge we have of fires, we can make a community that hopefully this will never happen in again," added Moak.

The Supervisors also approved a proposal targeting price gouging and allowing people to live in recreational vehicles longer than the current zoning rules allow.

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