After alternately begging and warning Camp Fire survivors, Butte County officials have extended the tree removal sign-up deadline in the burn scar.
Having only moderate luck getting signatures, officials are giving survivors additional time to join mandatory programs aimed at logging damaged trees that could tumble across a public road. Casey Hatcher is Butte County’s Deputy Chief Administrative Officer.
“We have about 4,000 of the 13,000 property owners that need to enroll in a tree program have signed up, so the deadline has been extended to January 17,” Hatcher said.
Similar to debris removal, there’s a public program at no out of pocket cost to property owners. An alternative, private program relies on property owners hiring their own contractors directly.
Either way, officials say they’ll need permission to enter survivors’ properties to do an assessment, followed by a later inspection to assure all potentially hazardous trees are gone.
Hatcher said there’s been a bit of confusion about what constitutes a hazardous tree and who needs to sign up.
“We recognize that people have removed their own trees, or that PG&E has removed a lot of trees along their right of way,” she said.
But for officials to make sure no dangers have been left in place, Hatcher said all property owners need to choose and sign up for one of the programs.