Los Padres to Receive $37.7 million in Thomas Fire Cost Recovery Settlement

Forest Service (Courtesy)

Los Padres National Forest officials announced that Southern California Edison (SCE) has agreed to pay the United States $80 million to resolve claims and recovery costs associated with suppressing the 2017 Thomas Fire that burned more than 280,000 acres, including more than 150,000 acres of National Forest System Lands in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

As part of the settlement, Los Padres will receive nearly $38 million for ongoing efforts to repair roads, trails, bridges and recreation sites damaged by the fire, as well as ecological recovery activities such as native plant restoration and invasive plant treatments.

“The Thomas Fire was the largest wildfire in Los Padres history; its impacts and aftermath are still being felt today,” said Los Padres Forest Supervisor Chris Stubbs. “This settlement provides the funding that will be required to address the widespread damage caused by this tragic event.”

The Thomas Fire ignited in two locations on the evening of December 4, 2017. The first ignition was in Anlauf Canyon north of Santa Paula and the second ignition occurred at the top of Koenigstein Road in Upper Ojai. The two fires joined and came to be known as the Thomas Fire.

In 2020, the United States filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Forest Service against SCE to recover costs incurred fighting the Thomas Fire and for the extensive damages that it caused to the Los Padres National Forest.

For additional information about Los Padres National Forest, please visit the Forest website at http://www.fs.usda.gov/lpnf.


Written by LosPadresForest

Public information provided by the Los Padres National Forest.

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    • Good question, absolutely zero in this state. It will get all sucked up into permanent pensions and paper pushers’ salaries. In other states where public servants are accountable for their work, you’d see those kind of improvements.

      • Really? Not a penny will be used to fixed forest facilities? Have you ever even been in the LPNF? Ever hiked a trail? Camped near or fished the Santa Ynez river? Ever? “Absolutely zero” LOL! Not even close, “Captain”

        • Well, since you asked all mad about it – yes to all of that! I used to work for the USFS in the Los Padres, and have fished, camped, biked, and hiked everywhere back there since junior high…since you felt like you HAD to ask! Hilarious! Here come another dozen or so rounds of ‘I don’t believe yous’ from sac…love it! You gotta get off the computer dog.

          Have YOU been up there lately? The place got trashed by last years’ heavy rains. I’d send you photos but I don’t send photos to folks I don’t trust. I biked back and it needs major money to fix so folks can get back to their forest again. Over the years the USFS has a record of gradually closing off access. You haven’t noticed that?

        • Wrong – not at all. I don’t get ANY benefits. Surprised? Of course you are. But back to the main point, having worked for the Forest Service and walked into a number of County offices over the years to do business, I’ll say straight up that taxpayers aren’t getting their money’s worth for these bloated government agencies where the average employee isn’t trying too hard to get sh-t done. It’s a know problem.

          • Yes, that’s the problem – those who know, know that you’re talking nonsense, and the average public servant in SB works hard to deal courteously with the occasional entitled folks who come in clueless.

          • Wait, so you work for UCSB and “don’t get ANY benefits?” And you worked for the Forest Service for multiple years and got no benefits there either? So you’ve worked your entire life for public and government agencies and have received “ANY benefits?”

            And still “absolutely zero” pennies will go to fixing/upgrading/maintaining LPNF facilities?

            Are you really sure about all this stuff you’re saying? It’s absurdly unbelievable.

      • So, “Ranger Basic,” when do you plan on answering the question? Do you really believe “absolutely zero” pennies of that settlement will be used to repair the facilities and trails you claim to us so often? Those will just be left to rot and deteriorate?

        You said it, I’m just asking for you to confirm, especially now knowing how familiar you are with the administration and operations involved in the forest.

  1. Anonymous, if you like the way your County is working for you, then I have a bridge to sell you. Keep in mind the pension deficits are skyrocketing in CA, which, if you have children, will REALLY suck in the future, unless you’re very weakly of course. Are you?

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