April 8 (UPI) -- California on Thursday announced plans to designate $536 million to bolster the state's efforts to combat wildfires.
Gov. Gavin Newsom and members of the state legislature agreed on the Wildfire Prevention and Resiliency Package, which includes $125 million from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction funds and $411 million from the state's General Fund.
"Key parts of the Administration's initial proposal have been supplemented by legislative ideas that will pay dividends over the years, such as greater investments in forest health projects, improvements on defensible space, home hardening against fires, fire prevention grants and prevention workforce training," Newsom, and fellow Democrats Senate pro tempore Toni G. Atkins and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon said in a joint statement.
They added that the plan includes public and private lands vegetation management, community-focused efforts for prevention and resilience and economic stimulus for the forestry economy.
The announcement comes after the California Department of Water Resources last week marked 2021 as the third-driest water year on record in the state.
The department reported that California's major water reservoirs are at just 50% of their overall capacity, with the state's largest reservoir, Lake Oroville, at 53% of its average.