Sacramento, CA – Since 2015, Lake County has suffered from a series of devastating wildland fires which has destroyed nearly 2,000 homes, hundreds of additional buildings have been leveled and the fires scorched tens of thousands of acres. The cumulative impact to Lake County has been significant.
This week, Senator Mike McGuire is excited to announce that $50,000 has been awarded to the Lake Area Rotary Club Association (LARCA) to improve Lake County’s evacuation shelter system by Bay Area non-profit organization, Tipping Point Community. Senator McGuire has been working with local elected officials and non-profit leaders to secure the funds which will make desperately needed investments to enhance and modernize Lake County’s emergency shelter system.
“Lake County has suffered significantly from the impacts of five major fires over these past three years, and it’s become crystal clear the emergency shelter system had to be improved and modernized to meet what has become our new normal,” Senator Mike McGuire said. “We are grateful for the incredible generosity of Tipping Point, the Lake County Community Action Group who have been leading this effort and PG&E. All have stepped up to make these needed improvements and help the County and City become more resilient in times of disaster.”
The funds, awarded by Tipping Point – a non-profit focused on breaking the cycle of poverty and a significant funder in the North Bay fire recovery efforts – will be used to make critical improvements to the Clearlake Community Senior Center, which acts as the area’s emergency facility during times of crisis. Paired with grants from PG&E and other community groups, the improvements will include purchasing a generator so the shelter can provide uninterruptible power, 24-7, for seventy-two hours. In addition, local officials will purchase or construct portable shower/bathroom facilities with one ADA compliant facility, a storage room for emergency supplies, and a trailer frame to transport the portable shower/bathroom facilities. These enhancements will fix glaring challenges the County and City of Clearlake have faced during the multiple mass evacuations over the last few years.
“The Lake County fires, along with two flood events, have had an immense impact on our community over the past several years,” said Russ Cremer, Clearlake City Councilmember and Treasurer of LARCA. “Thanks to the leadership of LARCA, Senator McGuire and the fantastic generosity of Tipping Point, these funds will provide us with the ability to complete the infrastructure for an emergency evacuation shelter at our Clearlake Community Senior Center. Residents from all across the county will be better served by these enhancements during our greatest times of need.”
The total project budget is: $169,437. Thus far, support for this project has been overwhelming, raising approximately $147,000. This includes the investment from the Tipping Point Emergency Relief Fund, a grant from PG&E of $75,000 to purchase a generator and transfer switch for the facility. Clearlake Rotary through fundraising will also be contributing $14,000 to the project, and about $8,300 will be provided by the Lake Area Rotary Club Association (LARCA) Fire Relief Fund.
“The impact of the North Bay fires will be long felt in the region, but those who are low-income will have the steepest climb ahead,” said Daniel Lurie, CEO and Founder of Tipping Point. “Improvements to the evacuation shelter will provide a safe haven in the event of another disaster for those who have nowhere else to turn.”