The California Earthquake Authority (CEA) has been named the Administrator of the California Wildfire Fund.*
California Wildfire Fund
About the California Wildfire Fund
On Friday, July 12, 2019, Governor Newsom signed into law AB 1054 (Holden, Burke & Mayes) and AB 111 (Committee on Budget), known as the “2019 Wildfire Legislation”. AB 1054 was subsequently amended by AB 1513 (Holden). The 2019 Wildfire Legislation enacts a broad set of reforms and programs related to utility-caused wildfires in California.
The 2019 Wildfire Legislation, which took immediate effect upon the Governor’s signature, establishes the California Wildfire Fund. The purpose of the Wildfire Fund is to provide a source of money to pay or reimburse eligible claims arising from a covered wildfire caused by a utility company which participates in the Wildfire Fund by assisting in capitalizing the Fund, and undertaking certain other obligations specified in the law.
Wildfire Fund Governance
The newly created California Catastrophe Response Council (Council) is responsible for oversight of the California Wildfire Fund. The Council has nine members, consisting of the following:
Secretary of Natural Resources
One member appointed by the California Senate Rules Committee
One member appointed by the Speaker of the California Assembly
Three members of the public, appointed by the Governor to serve two-year terms
The Governor, Insurance Commissioner, Treasurer and Secretary of Natural Resources are each authorized by law to designate individuals to serve on their behalf as members of the Council. Among other things, the Council is charged with appointing an “Administrator” for the Wildfire Fund. The Council named California Earthquake Authority (CEA)* the Administrator of the California Wildfire Fund on April 23, 2020.
*Assets in the California Earthquake Authority Fund and the California Wildfire Fund are segregated and separately managed and maintained. All costs and expenses incurred by the Authority to administer the Wildfire Fund are allocated to and paid from the Wildfire Fund.