Oregonians eager to recover after 2020 wildfires may now forgo adopting new building code standards for properties in wildfire areas. Property owners may rebuild without going through the permit process or adopting 2018 Wildland Urban Interface building standards.
HB2289 is an example of local government with the best intentions working against their own long-term interests. Although it appeases constituents and expedites the return to “normalcy” for the community, it preempts the evolution of wildfire resiliency and the development of a sustainable wildfire management strategy. Short-term benefits may not justify the long-term impact on the area’s fire ecosystem and the community’s sustainability. HB2289 could delay the implementation of a sustainable wildfire strategy for decades, a delay our children and grandchildren can’t afford.
Planning decisions for government entities need to incorporate a longer-term view so constituents can be made aware of how decisions today impact the city’s ability to protect its infrastructure and citizens in the future.
Swan Score: C
Faster repair times get owners back in their homes ASAP
Fire Protection Association
Dangerous conditions persist without enforcement of new code
No resiliency improvement. Ongoing threat to wildlife
Lower severity (Average $ Loss per Claim)
Expedited permits delay enforcement of safer building codes