On November 17, the SBCC approved amendments to the WUI code that weaken or remove defensible space requirements and ask local jurisdictions to adopt their own map (the DNR map would no longer be referenced). WSAFM has concerns and provided an official letter to the SBCC. Defensible space is a national best practice and proven code strategy to reduce death and property loss from wildfire. WSAFM feels the SBCC exceptions go too far in Chapter 6, particularly for jurisdictions in the eastern, drier part of the state. In addition, WSAFM is concerned that the SBCC is creating an unfunded mandate for local jurisdictions by removing the DNR map (SBCC amendments to Chapter 3). WSAFM would rather see the DNR map improved with more local flexibility rather than require all local jurisdictions to create and maintain their own maps.
WSAFM's official comment is here: WSAFM WUI Position Paper
The proposed Draft Language from the SBCC is here: Microsoft Word - Defensible Space Proposal Council Decision Nov 17 (wa.gov)
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