JaCo commissioners to send letter citing concerns over wildfire risk map

MEDFORD, Ore. – Jackson County Commissioners pushing back against a proposed fire safety risk map.

In 2021, the state legislature passed Senate Bill 762, which allowed the Oregon Department of Forestry to identify areas with the highest risk to wildfires.

ODF announced plans to re-draw the plan last year, after many people called it unfair and believed their insurance would go up.

A similar new bill, Senate Bill 80, is currently being discussed in the legislature.

Commissioner Rick Dyer believes it’s not any better than the previous bill.

“I don’t think there should be any mystery about why we don’t particularly like any of this legislation but if this was suppose to fix the terrible 762, it’s not doing it,” Dyer said.

Ashland state senator Jeff Golden said the new version of bill would bar insurance companies from raising premiums based on wildfire risk maps.

During Tuesday’s study session, commissioners discussed concerns over potential insurance increases and how accurate labeling homes as high risk will be.

Commissioners plan to send a letter to the state laying out their concerns.

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NBC5 News reporter Zachary Larsen grew up in Surprise, Arizona. He graduated from Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism. At ASU, Zack interned at Arizona Sports 98.7FM and Softball America. During his Junior year, Zack joined the ASU Sports Bureau. He covered the Fiesta Bowl, the Phoenix Open and major basketball tournaments. Zack enjoys working out, creative writing, music, and rooting for his ASU Sun Devils.
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