President Donald Trump will visit California on Monday to be briefed about the wildfires that have burned 3.2 million acres, caused 19 deaths and destroyed more than 4,000 structures in the state.
The White House said on Twitter Saturday that Trump will be attending a “briefing with local & federal fire and emergency officials on the state’s wildfires.” He’ll visit McClellan Park in Sacramento County, according to FOX 11 Los Angeles, which first reported the news. The community, on a former Air Force base, has become a center of operations for Cal Fire, the TV station said.
“Since mid-August, President Trump and Governor (Gavin) Newsom have spoken by phone and the White House and FEMA have remained in constant contact with State and local officials throughout the response to these natural disasters,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Judd Deere said, according to FOX 11. “The President continues to support those who are battling raging wildfires in a locally-executed, state-managed, and federally-supported emergency response.”
Newsom has touted his working relationship with Trump on the wildfire response and has largely avoided directly criticizing the president, despite disagreements on issues including climate change.
“There’s not one phone call that I have made to the president where he hasn’t quickly responded,” Newsom said at a news conference in late August. “He may make statements publicly, but the working relationship privately has been a very effective one.”
The federal government has approved 10 fire management assistance grants for California, FOX 11 reported, which cover up to 75 percent of the cost of managing wildfires. On Aug. 22, the White House issued a disaster declaration in California, making funding available to individuals affected by the wildfires in several counties such as Sonoma and Santa Cruz, although the declaration did not include Santa Clara County.
Trump visited California in 2018, touring the town of Paradise that was ravaged by the Camp Fire, the deadliest in the state’s recorded history. At the time, he met with then-Gov. Jerry Brown and Governor-Elect Newsom. The three discussed forest management efforts and also visited fire-damaged areas in Malibu.
“We’re all going to work together and we’ll do a real job,” Trump said in 2018. “I know Gavin’s committed, we’re all committed, I’m committed to make sure that we get all of this cleaned out and protected.”
The president also has visits to Arizona and Nevada scheduled, according to FOX 11.
Source: Orange County Register