Landmark Emergency Alert Legislation Passes First Senate Committee Hearing with Bipartisan Support

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Sacramento, CA – Six months after the North Bay Fire Storm, landmark legislation setting statewide emergency alert protocols was approved in its first official Senate Committee Hearing today.

“The night of October 8 changed the lives of North Bay residents forever, when tens of thousands of residents were caught unaware that a massive wildland fire was about to engulf their home or business, because they did not receive an emergency alert,” Senator McGuire said. “While there are hundreds of harrowing stories of bravery that night, regrettably, not everyone received a warning. Lives depend on the Legislature and Governor taking swift action to ensure statewide emergency alert standards are adopted, training is implemented, and funding is secured to ensure communities big and small have reliable alert systems deployed which will save lives.”

SB 833 was approved Tuesday morning on a unanimous, bipartisan 12 to 0 vote in the Senate Governmental Organization Committee.

The legislation was introduced by Senator McGuire, along with Joint Authors Senators Bill Dodd and Jerry Hill, and Principal Co-Authors Assemblymembers Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, Marc Levine, and Jim Wood, and will create statewide emergency alert protocols for the first time in California history.

Speaking today in support of the legislation were Fire Chief Tony Gossner from Santa Rosa Fire Department, Janice Laskoski, a Fountaingrove resident in Santa Rosa who barely escaped the firestorm with her life, she never received an emergency alert. Santa Rosa resident, Jessica Tunis, whose mother tragically passed away in Journey’s End Mobile Home Park the night of the fires also testified in support.

Clips of Senator McGuire discussion the legislation are available here.