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Sale of Miami Condo Collapse Beachfront Land Shines Light On NJ’s “Rebuild Madness”

May 13th, 2022 No comments

Billionaire Real Estate Firm To Purchase Land For More Than $120 Million

Judge Using Revenue For Victims Compensation To Create Future Victims

“The capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them” ~~~ Marx/Lenin

Part One of Two

Part One today will briefly update the status and explore the possible causes of the deadly Miami condominium collapse last year.

Part Two will then explore the implications for NJ.

I)  Beachfront Land For Sale

The beachfront land at the site of last year’s deadly condo collapse in Miami, where 98 people died, will be sold at auction on May 24. 

The land sale was approved by a local Florida Judge

Despite some opposition to the sale, the court will use the money to compensate the owners of the 136 apartments destroyed and the families affected by the Champlain Towers South Tragedy.

Billionaire Hussain Sajwani, of the Dubai-based DAMAC Properties, bid $120 million to purchase the oceanside property at 8777 Collins Ave.

The revenue from the land sale is part of a $997 million settlement to compensate victims’ families.

Of course, the NYT makes no mention of the perversity of a settlement that compensates innocent victims by creating future victims.

The settlement will do this in at least 2 ways directly: 1) by selling the land – unconditionally – to a developer who will build another condo that will collapse or be inundated by rising seas, creating future victims; and 2) by releasing condo owners from any liability for negligence, which sends a perverse message to other condo owners that they can neglect maintenance and coastal risks with impunity, again creating more future victims. There are additional major flaws of a settlement before the accident investigation is complete, causes are known and reforms are enacted. Surely, responsible corporations and public officials have gotten off the hook and will not be held accountable, again leading to even more future victims.

II) Will Redevelopment Occur Before Accident Investigation Completed and Causes Are Known?

Lost in all the money are the facts that, as the NY Times parenthetically notes (I think they call this “burying the lede”):

The National Institute of Standards and Technology is still investigating what caused the 13-story, 135-unit building to partially crumble in the middle of the night, a review that could take years. […]

As part of their earlier settlement, the condo owners were released from any liability for negligence in the building’s maintenance. Under Florida law, they could have been sued for up to the value of their units.

Hey, it could be worse: the Florida legislature could – just like NY and NJ did in providing immunity from COVID liability to nursing homes – simply pass a law waiving liability for all beachfront property.

But I want to focus briefly on the property sale to a billionaire real estate developer, who surely isn’t spending at least $120 million for 1.88 acres of beachfront property to create bird habitat.

Obviously, he will seek to build another high rise condo there.

It is insane to rebuild on that site, especially before the investigation of the cause of collapse is complete and the cause is known.

Subsurface conditions, land subsidence, salt water intrusion, and climate driven rising sea levels and deadly storms make future disaster and/or collapse inevitable.

III)  Will Subsurface Conditions and Climate Change Be Part Of the Investigation?

The media initially reported on climate and subsurface conditions as potential causes of the collapse.

But that angle on the story was immediately suppressed, given the multi-billion dollar devastation it would cause if the implications for south Florida coastal development were fully understood.

A Washington Post story outlined these issues:

  • Engineer warned of ‘major structural damage’ years before Florida condo building collapsed

Investigators will probe whether salt, humidity and other environmental conditions also could have weakened the Champlain South structure or if other problems such as a sinkhole-like collapse in the ground underneath the building led to the disaster. …

Some local officials and others interviewed said that the 40-year review process should be made more rigorous and that the inspections should be more frequent. They noted that the checklist does not include an examination of the ground under buildings such as Champlain Towers.

“It’s not just what’s happening above ground — it’s what happening below ground that counts,” Surfside Building Department chief James McGuinness, told reporters. According to McGuinness, the review is strictly focused on the structural load-bearing elements of the building and its electrical systems. [Note: not subsurface conditions]

Surfside Town Commissioner Eliana Salzhauer told reporters Friday that commissioners believed the process should be adjusted to include underground checks.

“They look for cracks in the concrete, but they really have no clue what’s going on beneath the ground,” said attorney David Haber, who specializes in construction and condominium law. “Who knows what it looks like below grade? That’s something that I think we are going to have to look at changing in South Florida, with the rising water table.” …

But Salzhauer said Surfside, like communities throughout South Florida, has been battling erosion. Many buildings have been constructed on reclaimed marshland.

“Remember, the water just doesn’t go where we see it,” Salzhauer said. “The water is underneath. Miami Beach has water underneath. There is water below us, and the water is above us. And we have to live in that precarious balance of having to build on what is essentially a big puddle of water.” …

DiMaggio Berger said that a “subsurface, structural issue” likely caused the collapse. “This building was on pilings buffeted by the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway,” she said. “We’ve got water coming at this thing from both sides.”

Now here’s where it gets really interesting.

In addition to these serious concerns about subsurface conditions, the research of a local professor had documented land subsidence at the site. This professor initially publicly suggested that land subsidence could have been a factor, but within 24 hours of making these comments, he walked them back: (WaPo)

On Friday, as officials and lawyers called for greater scrutiny of the ground underneath residential structures, The Post found that research indicating that the site of the Champlain building had been sinking was made public at least 3½ years ago, earlier than was previously known.

An academic study published in April 2020, which found that the building appeared to have been sinking during the 1990s, was first reported by USA Today on Thursday, after the tower collapsed. […]

Fiaschi’s co-author, a professor, Shimon Wdowinski of Miami’s Florida International University, told The Post that he had presented research in the past to Miami-Dade officials as part of a regional task force seeking to tackle climate change but could not recall whether the subsidence in the area of Champlain Towers South had been discussed.

Leaders of the task force and a senior Miami-Dade official who participates on it declined to comment when asked if they had been aware of the findings.

Fiaschi stressed in an email to The Post that the reason for the collapse of Champlain Towers was unclear, saying it was “not possible to understand which are the causes of the collapse, or if the subsidence we detected have some sort of contribution to the failure of the building.”

Wow.

How could a professor possibly “not recall” such an important research presentation?

Why would leaders of the climate task force decline to comment?

Why is the researcher running away from the findings and implications of his research?

Some folks even went so far as to try to immediately shut down that whole line of subsurface investigation and instead focus on traditional building engineering and building codes:

Other analysts on Friday said focus should remain on the building’s structural integrity.

Right.

Make the collapse unique to this one building and thereby ignore millions of other vulnerable buildings.

So, the scope of the investigation by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) investigation is critical.

Will it include subsurface conditions and climate change impacts?

A NIST press release on the study vaguely hints at the not only the local but national implications of the investigation:

There are millions of high-rise condominium units in Florida alone, many of them near the ocean or aging. While a NIST investigation is intended to identify the cause of the Champlain Towers South collapse, it could also uncover potential issues for other similar buildings nearby and throughout the nation. 

When NIST says the investigation may impact “buildings throughout the nation”, that includes New Jersey.

In order to understand the scope of NIST investigation, I just sent these questions to the NIST press officer, Jennifer Huergo, with a copy to NJ Spotlight reporter Jon Hurdle in hopes of prompting some investigation on his part of the NJ implications I will discuss in Part 2:

Hi Jennifer – I just left a message on your phone.

My questions are:

1. Does the scope of the NIST investigation of the Miami condo collapse include subsurface conditions?

Early press reports mentioned land subsidence, subsurface geology, reclaimed wetlands, salt water intrusion, possible sinkhole formation, and erosion, oxidation, and water damage from increasing sea level rise/storm surge.

Are these factors being considered?

Please confirm.

2. In terms of timing: will the NIST investigation Report be issued publicly before land use redevelopment approvals are issued for any redevelopment of the property?

I note that the land will be auctioned on May 24, with an opening bid price of $120 million (from a real estate firm). I assume they are not spending that kind of money to create habitat!

Thank you,

Part Two, on how this all relates to NJ is coming soon!

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Murphy Green Cover – At Its Elite And Corporate Worst

May 9th, 2022 No comments

All That’s Wrong With NJ Environmental Politics – In One Photo

The New CCC: Careerism – Co-optation – Corruption

image

FB Photo: Dena Mottola Jaborska (NJ Citizen Action), Dave Pringle (Consultant), Curtis Fisher (NWF, former NJPIRG) and Doug O’Malley (Environment NJ) (L-R)

They were careless people, Tom and Daisy – they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they made…” ~~~ The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Former Goldmans Sach’s executive and current NJ Governor Murphy held an “Inaugural Ball” last week in MetLife Stadium. (that’s Metlife, the global insurance and financial services corporation that had over $70 billion in revenue last year).

I’ve likened Gov. Murphy and his trophy wife Tammy to Tom and Daisy from The Great Gatsby.

Even the hometown corporate media had a tough time swallowing that ostentatious self promotion (nj.com):

Thursday’s event was organized and paid for by a “dark money” nonprofit called New Jersey Forward, made up of Murphy allies. Because it’s a 501(c)4 organization, there are zero limits on what it can accept as donations and it does not have to reveal its donors. The group said 1,000 people were expected to attend Thursday’s gala — which would translate to at least $300,000.

The organization’s name is similar to that of a pair of political groups launched in February to bolster Murphy’s national profile: a political action committee and nonprofit that are both named Stronger Fairer Forward.

But NJ’s former and current “progressive” and “environmental” leaders – my former friends and colleagues – were all smiles (above photo).

Surprised they didn’t get a “groupie” with the Gov. and Tammy. (4 more years!!!)

I lack the words – and meanness of spirit – to describe what this really means.

But, its way beyond disappointment.

It sickens me and illustrates all that is wrong with NJ’s environmental “activism” and “progressive” so called environmental politics.

These people surely know that Murphy is a complete fraud on his claims of leadership on climate policy.

So why do they have their heads so far up his ass?

On that basis alone, they should have organized activists to protest outside the Gov.’s event, not partied inside it.

In 1848, Thoreau went to jail for refusing, as a protest against the Mexican war, to pay his poll tax. When RW Emerson came to bail him out, Emerson said, ‘Henry, what are you doing in there?’ Thoreau quietly replied, ‘Ralph, what are you doing out there?’ ~~~

(yes, we know that this story is legend – not historical fact – and that slavery as well as war was Thoreau’s concern)

Shame.

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NJ Legislators Asked To Repeal Liability Immunity For Out Of Control Prescribed Burn Wildfire Damage

May 9th, 2022 No comments

Legislature Must Conduct Oversight Of Murphy DEP Claim Of Lack Of Legislative Authority To Address Wildfire Risks in Land Use Programs

I must begin this post by providing context and an example.

Legal liability for causing harm is a significant structural component of public policies to protect the public interest, particularly human health and the environment. Liability for causing harm can reinforce and even strengthen protective regulatory policies (ELI Institute):

Liability for environmental harm is designed to compensate affected parties, with a particular focus on restoring or replacing injured resources and/or providing compensation for lost value. By increasing the costs for those who harm the environment, liability provisions can serve an important deterrent role, promoting compliance with laws and regulations. Liability provisions can also serve as gap-fillers, covering activities not specifically identified as illegal but nevertheless resulting in harm to the environment, livelihoods, and public health.

Simply put: when the law allows corporations and people to avoid accountability for unsafe and negligent practices that cause harm, then they act with impunity and we are all worse off.

As an example: We recently experienced corruption, concrete negative effects, and the huge implications of the liability scheme when NY Gov. Cuomo – followed by NJ Gov. Murphy and the NJ Legislature – provided liability immunity for negligence in responding to COVID, see:

Repeat: “NY’s liability shield is linked to higher nursing home death rates”.

Public outrage forced Gov. Cuomo to repeal that law, see:

With that context, now, let’s get to the topic of today’s post.

Last week, I wrote that a “prescribed burn” by the US Forest Service started the biggest wildfire in the US in New Mexico. That wildfire damaged billions of dollars in property and put lives at risk. Development was allowed to be built in areas of extreme wildfire risks, see:

That post also explained how the NJ legislature – just like COVID in nursing homes – recently very quietly provided broad liability immunity for damage from prescribed burns, including damage from wildfires:

The Prescribed Burn Act, specifically see C.13:9-44.16 Prescribed burn deemed to be in public interest; immunity from liability, also exempts wildfires caused by prescribed burns that get out of control and damage people and property (e.g. your barn or house burns down or your animals are killed).

And I exposed the claim by the Murphy DEP that DEP lacks common sense legal authority to regulate land use to prevent and reduce the risks of wildfire from proposed new development and existing development, even in mapped areas of “extreme wildfire risk”, see:

I was stunned that the Department wrote to deny legislative authority to consider wildfire risks in DEP’s land use regulatory programs. DEP wrote:

While the Department has considerable authority to regulate certain activities in particular environmentally sensitive areas, the Department does not possess the sort of master land use planning or regulatory authority alluded to by Petitioner.

I previously wrote to Senator Smith to conduct oversight of that DEP claim and – if accurate – to close that legal gap.

So, let’s not wait for a New Mexico out of control prescribed burn disaster to act.

Let’s learn from New York State’s COVID liability experience and repeal bad law.

Let’s close the legal land use gaps DEP claims exist.

Let’s not allow more people and property in harms way and repeat the historical mistakes of allowing development in hazardous coastal and flood locations.

Let’s make common sense reforms:

  • REPEAL THE WILDFIRE DAMAGE LIABILITY EXEMPTION FOR PRESCRIBED BURNS.
  • PROVIDE LEGAL AUTHORITY TO DEP TO RESTRICT LAND USE IN EXTREME WILDFIRE AREAS.

Ironically, in a February 10 Senate hearing, both Murphy DEP Commissioner and Senate Environment Committee Chairman Bob Smith highlighted the wildfire risks of western fires, like the New Mexico blaze. Amazingly, DEP Commissioner LaTourette even touted DEP’s prescribed burn program (without even a mention of the liability waiver or lack of land use authority issues).

So, I wrote the following letter to Senate Environment Committee Chairman Bob Smith and urge you to contact your legislator and Gov. Murphy:

Dear Senator Smith:

As you and DEP Commissioner LaTourette raised concerns about western wildfires during the February 10, 2022 Senate Environment Committee, I thought you would be concerned that the largest active wildfire in the country currently burning in New Mexico was started by a US Forest Service prescribed burn that got out of control.

According to a New Mexico State Senator and Congressional representatives, the US Forest Service “fire model” determined that the prescribed burn was “safe”, despite local fire restrictions due to extremely fire inducing conditions, e.g. drought, wind, relative humidity, soil moisture, vegetation, landscape, et al.

As you know, in 2018, the legislature enacted The Prescribed Burn Act, specifically see C.13:9-44.16, which established liability exemptions for prescribed burns that get out of control and cause damage.

As you also know, the DEP recently announced support for expanding DEP controlled burns in NJ.

In light of the New Mexico situation and the claim that the US Forest Service fire model appears to be seriously flawed, I urge your reconsideration and repeal of the liability exemption established by The Prescribed Burn Act.

also request that you conduct oversight of DEP’s “fire model” to determine if it is current and reflects the best available science.

Links to the New Mexico news accounts are provided below, FYI,

Respectfully,

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US Forest Service Prescribed Burn Started New Mexico Wildfire

May 7th, 2022 No comments

If DEP Started Wildfire Burned Down Your Home, You Could Not Sue To Recover Damage

NJ Law Quietly Exempted Liability For Property Damage From Prescribed Burns

Why is DEP willing to expand the use of risky prescribed burns – with damage liability exempted – yet they totally reject much less damaging and risky management strategies, like limiting new development in extreme wildfire hazard areas and requiring fireproofing of existing development in those risky areas?

A major wildfire now burning in New Mexico – the largest active fire in the country – was started by the US Forest Service (USFS).

A USFS “prescribed burn” got out of control.

A lot of people are pissed off: (listen to the entire TV news video – here’s an excerpt):

NM lawmakers frustrated with US Forest Service’s role in starting Hermits Peak Fire

Sen. Ben Ray Luján shared his frustration with the U.S. Forest Service’s role in starting the Hermits Peak Fire, which now, combined with the Calf Canyon Fire, is the largest active fire in the country.

“I know that week, where I live, my brother was going to burn the acequias as we were cleaning it, and so sometimes you burn that vegetation off, so you can get a cleaner cut with that shovel,” he said. “Well, we were told by the local fire department, no burning, there were fire restrictions.”

That was the same week the Forest Service started a prescribed burn in Santa Fe National Forest, which has since grown out of control to more than 160,000 acres.

“It makes zero sense to me, and this is also something we have to get to the bottom of,” Sen. Luján said. “I’m terrified that this is the new normal with wildfire behavior across the West.”

He added that state leaders are doing everything they can to hold the federal agency accountable.

“There is a real federal liability here,” said New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham in a recent interview with KOB 4.

Congresswoman Teresa Leger Fernandez sent the Forest Service a letter, asking if there has been an investigation, what protocols are in place to prevent a controlled burn from getting out of control, and when those protocols were last updated.

According to officials, the USFS prescribed burn was deemed “safe” by the USFS fire model.

The New Mexico US Forest Service “prescribed burn” wildfire sheds light on the risks of prescribed burns and the resulting liability issues.

Don’t think accidents can’t happen here – for example, in 2013, smoke from a DEP prescribed burn resulted in the death of a firefighter. I wrote:

The death of a fireman was caused during a prescribed burn last year at round Valley Reservoir sheds new light on these risks, see: Prosecutor: Thick smoke blinds driver who hit, killed N.J. fireman at Round Valley].

DEP refused to respond to my OPRA data request regarding data on how many NJ prescribed burns got out of control and caused damage. So we don ‘t know how often it happens here and what the damage is.

Despite these risks, remarkably, the NJ legislature in 2018 eliminated liability for damages caused by a “prescribed burn” that got out of control.

I recently warned about that:

Worse, the 2018  Prescribed Burn Act exempts “prescribed burns” from air pollution permit and compliance requirements and provides exemptions from liability for air pollution impacts (e.g. like sending you asthmatic kid to the hospital).

4) With so many people and so much property at risk from wildfire, why did DEP support legislation that eliminated liability for wildfires caused by poorly managed “prescribed burns”?

The Prescribed Burn Act, specifically see C.13:9-44.16 Prescribed burn deemed to be in public interest; immunity from liability, also exempts wildfires caused by prescribed burns that get out of control and damage people and property (e.g. your barn or house burns down or you animals killed).

Despite the New Mexico prescribed burn disaster which illustrates the poor public policy of the liability exemption in NJ law that lets DEP off the hook for damages they may cause, just yesterday, as the New Mexico fired burned, the Murphy DEP doubled down on the use of “prescribed burns”. see:

DEP wrote to note that the causes of a “wildfire” include an out of control “prescribed burn”:

A wildfire or “wildland fire” is defined as “any non-structural fire that occurs in the wildland,” which can be naturally occurring, human-caused, or prescribed and occur in forested, semi-forested, or less developed areas.  Hazard Mitigation Plan at 5.12-2. 

Completely ignoring the risks of an out of control “prescribed burn” and with no mention of the ill-advised the liability relief in NJ law, DEP then touted the benefits of prescribed burn and committed to expanding them:

Each year the Department conducts prescribed burns to reduce forest fuels and undergrowth that contribute to wildfire starts and spread. The prescribed burn program has expanded over time to include both public and private forests. In 2021, the Department conducted prescribed burns on 17,936 acres. For the 2022 season, the Department is targeting a program covering 20,000 to 25,000 acres. 

Just beware that if a DEP prescribed burn” get out of control and burns down your house or barn, you are SOL.

Did you know that?

Did the NJ media report that?

Are you OK with that?

Why is DEP willing to expand the use of risky prescribed burns, yet they reject much less damaging and risky management strategies, like limiting new development in extreme wildfire hazard areas and requiring fireproofing of existing development in those risky areas?

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Murphy DEP Denies Climate Wildfire Risk Petition

May 6th, 2022 No comments

DEP Claims To Lack Legislative Authority To Regulate Land Use To Prevent And Reduce Wildfire Risks

DEP Doubles Down On Flawed Strategies of Burning and Logging Forests

DEP Abdicates State Responsibility Via Delegation To Local Governments

DEP actually supports new development in extreme wildfire hazard areas

On the heels of the Highlands Council’s denial, in a Friday afternoon news dump, today the DEP denied my petition to force the Department to address climate induced wildfire risks in various DEP regulatory programs, including the land use programs.

As I wrote yesterday, the main objectives of filing the petition were, among other things, to:

to raise public awareness of the issues of climate, wildfire, and land use.

to pressure the [DEP] to adopt a policy of managing wildfire risk – primarily if not exclusively – through land use and development controls and fireproofing existing structures, instead of the damaging “active management” of prescribed burns, “thinning” and forest “treatments” (logging).

Finally, I had hoped to generate some pushback to DEP’s attempts, in their Forest Action Plan, Natural And Working Lands Strategy, and other “Forest stewardship” initiatives, to using wildfire risks as pretext for logging. (for recent examples of that abuse, see:

In denying the petition, the Department failed to engage the land use issues and instead doubled down on and defended exactly the flawed management strategies I opposed.

I was stunned that the Department wrote to deny legislative authority to consider wildfire risks in DEP’s land use regulatory programs:

While the Department has considerable authority to regulate certain activities in particular environmentally sensitive areas, the Department does not possess the sort of master land use planning or regulatory authority alluded to by Petitioner. In the particular areas over which the Department has regulatory authority, the development of many land areas that may be susceptible to wildfire is already minimized under the Department’s regulation of impacts to natural resources such as wetlands, threatened and endangered species habitat, coastal areas, riparian areas, and certain forested areas. As discussed below, the Department is engaged in an ongoing analysis of wildfire risk in the state and is developing information and tools to reduce wildfire risk and mitigate wildfire hazards to the maximum extent possible. 

DEP expressly limited their jurisdiction to:

regulation of impacts to natural resources such as wetlands, threatened and endangered species habitat, coastal areas, riparian areas, and certain forested areas.

Perhaps DEP failed to understand that the petition explicitly linked wildfire risks to impacts on DEP “regulated features“, i.e. the natural resources DEP noted above.

Clearly, there are scientific and legal nexus between land use, wildfire risks, and DEP regulated features. DEP is simply in denial about those linkages.

Later, the Department contradicted this denial of legislative authority to regulate land use, and concluded that land use restrictions are “unnecessary”

As such, the Department has determined that the requested rulemaking to prohibit or restrict development and mandate building retrofits is unnecessary. Nevertheless, the Department remains committed to continued research, as well as monitoring and reducing wildfire risk through both direct action and work with community partners.

I immediately wrote DEP to request that they clarify this fundamental legal issue, with a copy to Senator Smith requesting that he sponsor legislation to close that legal gap.

The Department then doubled down on controversial flawed, destructive, and ineffective DEP management strategies that rely exclusively on burning and logging forests to prevent and reduce wildfire risks:

Among the available forest management techniques are treatments to remove hazardous fuels and brush by thinning overstocked forests or creating fire breaks, as well as prescribed burning.  Id. at 35-36. The Department also utilizes prescribed burning for public safety and wildfire control.  See Forest Action Plan at 134-135.  

The Department admitted the huge risks of new and existing development in extreme wildfire risk areas.

But DEP then defended their current policy, which effectively abdicates State responsibility by delegating primary risk reduction strategies to local government.

Notably worse, the local strategies do not include land use controls under the NJ Municipal Land Use Law.

Thus, while DEP is fully aware of risks, by regulatory abdication DEP effectively actually supports new development in extreme wildfire hazard areas.

DEP wrote:

The Forest Action Plan recognizes that “[a]s the population in New Jersey continues to spread into the wildland or increase the amount of Wildland Urban Interface (WUI), community planning or the protection of both lives and property from wildfire is an unremitting challenge.”  Forest Action Plan at 133. One effective tool to address this challenge is a network of Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPPs).  Ibid. CWPP development focuses on restoring and maintaining landscapes that are resilient to fire-related disturbances, fire-adapting communities so that human populations and infrastructure can withstand a wildfire without loss of life and property, and engaging all jurisdictions to “participate in making and implementing safe, effective and efficient risk-based wildfire management decisions.” Ibid.

I need to do additional research on how DEP responded to the air pollution related issues, which are complex. I will note now, however, that DEP failed to mention recent NJ State legislation that exempted prescribed burns from DEP air permit requirements, as well as recent EPA Guidance regarding emissions inventory and reporting of controlled burn and wildfire emissions.

So, to summarize:

While the Governor and Murphy DEP tout their “climate resilience” leadership and regularly emphasize the risks of wildfires and the significant increase in those risks due to the climate emergency – and DEP even admits the significant increase in those risks due to existing development and burgeoning new development in extreme wildfire hazard areas – they are unwilling to regulate land use and development to mandate reductions in those risks.

Similarly, they abdicate the State responsibility and role in wildfire risk reduction strategies via delegation to their local government “partners”.

We’ll have more to write about this after we more thoroughly digest the DEP denial document (I hav an email version, no links, provided upon request)

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