Gov. Ducey signs bill to set up $100 million fund to fight Arizona wildfires

Jun 18, 2021, 10:23 AM | Updated: 2:49 pm

(Facebook Photo/Telegraph Fire Information)...

(Facebook Photo/Telegraph Fire Information)

(Facebook Photo/Telegraph Fire Information)

PHOENIX – Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed a bill Friday establishing a $100 million fund for wildfire emergency response as burn season tears across the state.

The Arizona Legislature passed the bill easily Thursday – the House vote was 56-2 and the Senate vote was 24-2 – after Ducey called lawmakers into a special session.

“It’s evident to me that we need to do more to address these wildfires and the disasters that follow,” Ducey said at the signing.

The measure includes $75 million for firefighting efforts to help affected municipalities, people and property owners recover and prepare for flooding and other fallout from large fires.

There is also $25 million to pay about 700 low-risk state inmates to work on fire prevention. They will be under the supervision of the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management.

Fires are burning in every direction of the state, the largest being the Telegraph Fire whipping through forestland near Globe.

The blaze surpassed 173,000 acres and was 70% contained, officials said Friday. It’s the sixth-largest wildfire in state history. Several communities remain under evacuation orders.

Dry and excessively hot weather has disrupted the attack on the fire.

The heat wave over the area – temperatures in the Valley have been at least 115 degrees most of the week – has grounded large aerial tankers; helicopters are having trouble finding places where they can pick up water to drop on the flames, John Truett with the state forestry department said this week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

A Phoenix Police SUV with lights on at a crime scene at night...

Phoenix police arrest 2 suspects linked to home burglary

Phoenix law enforcement arrested two suspects after a break-in on Saturday evening near 43rd Avenue and Northern Avenue.

2 hours ago

File photo of crime scene tape in Phoenix...

David Veenstra

Police investigating fatal hit-and-run collision in north Phoenix

Police are investigating a fatal hit-and-run collision that killed a female pedestrian in north Phoenix on Saturday.

4 hours ago

A man died after a motorcycle crash early Sunday morning in Desert View Village. (MCSO Photo)...

David Veenstra

Motorcyclist dead after crash in Desert View Village, near Cave Creek

A man died after a motorcycle crash early Sunday morning in Desert View Village, near Cave Creek, according to authorities.

5 hours ago

World's Biggest Bounce House (XL Event Lab photo)...

Damon Allred

World’s Largest Bounce House coming to Phoenix for weekend stop on nationwide tour

The Big Bounce America is bringing its coterie of inflatable attractions to Phoenix this weekend, featuring eight inflatables.

6 hours ago

Singer Matt Shultz of Cage the Elephant performs onstage during day two of the 2021 Pilgrimage Musi...

Damon Allred

Grammy-winning Cage The Elephant announces Phoenix stop during North American tour

Grammy Award-winning rock band Cage The Elephant announced a stop in Phoenix on its upcoming summer tour in conjunction with a new album.

6 hours ago

SkyBridge Arizona is an emerging business park in Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport. It, along with othe...

Ron Davis/Phoenix Business Journal

Major aerospace developments near Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport move forward

The skyline around Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport has some changes in store, including major aerospace develoments.

7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.


Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.


Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Gov. Ducey signs bill to set up $100 million fund to fight Arizona wildfires