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Rep. Kim Tours Silverado Canyon

Jun 22, 2023 | Press Releases, Wildfires

Washington, DC – Today, the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee passed out of markup H.R. 369, the NIST Wildland Fire Communications and Information Dissemination Act.  

This bipartisan bill led by Reps. Young Kim (CA-40) and Melanie Stansbury (NM-01) would boost communications and information sharing efforts between first responders, fire management response officials, and community members during wildfires. Rep. Joe Neguse (CO-02) is an original cosponsor of the bill. 

Rep. Kim first introduced this bill in the 117th Congress after hearing directly from representatives from Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA), California Army National Guard (CalGuard), CAL FIRE and the National Weather Service at a wildfire roundtable she hosted to discuss the state of wildfire coordination and response efforts across Southern California. 

“Our brave first responders’ ability to rapidly and securely share information during a wildfire can make the difference between life and death,” said Kim. “After hearing directly from Southern California first responders and local communities, I introduced the NIST Wildland Fire Communications and Information Dissemination Act to boost information sharing efforts during a wildfire and save lives. I thank my colleagues on the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee for supporting this bill out of Committee, and I hope for its swift passage on the floor. I will keep working to create thoughtful policies to support those on the front lines of preventing, detecting and containing wildfires and keeping our communities safe.” 

“It’s imperative our firefighters and first responders have the best tools to respond to catastrophic wildfires,” said Stansbury. “That’s why I am proud to join Rep. Kim to re-introduce this lifesaving bill. This bill will improve emergency response times and keep our communities safe.” 

The NIST Wildland Fire Communications and Information Dissemination Act would require NIST to work on wildfire communications efforts by: 

  • Executing a research plan on public safety communication coordination standards among federal, state, local, and tribal wildland firefighters, fire management response officials and the National Interagency Fire Center; 

  • Carrying out live and virtual field testing and measurement of equipment, software, and other technologies to develop standards for information dissemination; and, 

  • Providing recommendations to the member agencies of the National Interagency Fire Center on how to improve communications during wildland fires. 

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