President Trump threatens to cut U.S. funding for California wildfires
LOS ANGELES (AP) — President Donald Trump on Sunday threatened to cut U.S. funding to California for aid during wildfires that have burned across the state during dry winds this fall. Neither of the two major fires burning in California are on forest land.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom has done a “terrible job of forest management,” Trump tweeted. When fires rage, the governor comes to the federal government for help. “No more,” the president tweeted.
Newsom replied with a tweet of his own: “You don’t believe in climate change. You are excused from this conversation.”
The state controls a small percentage of forest land. The federal government manages most of it.
Meanwhile authorities lifted all evacuation orders as progress was being made on a large wildfire northwest of Los Angeles.
Firefighters contained 50% of that fire, which has burned nearly 15 square miles (38 square kilometers) and forced nearly 11,000 people to evacuate.
Crews working in steep areas were battling hotspots amid lingering winds, county fire Capt. Steve Kaufmann said Sunday.
Last year Trump made a similar threat as wildfires devastated Malibu and Paradise, California — accusing the state of “gross mismanagement” of forests.
At the time Newsom defended California’s wildfire prevention efforts while criticizing the federal government for not doing enough to help protect the state.
In Northern California, more people were allowed to return to areas evacuated due to a huge fire that was burning for days in the Sonoma County wine country.
The 121-square-mile (313-square-kilometer) fire was 76% contained, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.