BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. - U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Agriculture Secretary Sonney Purdue joined state and local officials to tour the areas affected by the Camp Fire on Monday.
Along with the tour, the members discussed the hot topic of forest management.
"The dynamic in California has changed," Zinke said. "Wildfires are not just forest and wildland problems any more. They have now become city problems."
They joined Congressman Doug LaMalfa and several other state and local elected officials to discuss the topics and tour the areas affected.
"This is why we're a team, we're a family," Zinke said. "The secretary and I are here talking with the local community and the press to work on making sure this doesn't happen again."
Monday's visit took a strong stance on forest management, with officials highlighting the lack of legislation supporting safe forest management.
"We need to get out of the litigation business and get into the mitigation business," Purdue said. "We can't stop the fires, but we can help prevent the carnage we see in these kinds of fires."
They also heard first accounts from those affected including firefighter Leland Radcliff, who lost everything while fighting the fire.
"I live in paradise," Radcliff said. "We lost everything. "You can talk about fuels and what we are going to do and thin the forests but we need money. We need stuff to be able to thin the forests. To think that we'll be able to pull that off in the winter time too, that's not going to happen."
Looking towards the future, these leaders on all levels of government and firefighting are pledging their cooperation so that Paradise can rise from the ashes.
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