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Still time to get free defensible space work done; get on the health district board

September 16, 2020 — There is still time for income eligible people to get free help from the Mendocino Firesafe Council to do the work of creating defensible space on their properties.

And the Mendocino Coast Health District board of directors is short a member, since one director left and another is not renewing her term. One applicant, Sara Spring, will be appointed automatically.

Michelle Blackwell reports that the Board of Supervisors must appoint someone to fill former director Steve Lund’s seat by October 8 or wait until December to fill the position. Interested parties should contact the Clerk of the Board or the Board of Supervisors at 463-4221 or For more details, keep an eye on Michlle Blackwell’s work in the Advocate/Beacon.

Further inland, fires are raging all around, with crews battling the blazes in multiple sectors with everything they’ve got. But Scott Cratty, the director of the Mendocino Firesafe Council, has  some money to spend before fire breaks out.The California State Firesafe Council awarded the county Firesafe Council $60,000 out of a grant it got from PG&E.  

All applicants anywhere in the county, including the incorporated, or urban areas, will be considered. Eligibility requirements are that applicants must be 65 or older, or have a medically documented physical disability that makes it impossible to do the work themselves. Rule of thumb financial guidelines for a one-person household are an income of less than $2,842 a month and, for a two-person household, an income of less than $3,246 a month. And the nature of grants is that the money has to be spent on a tight timeline. This funding ends in November, so, as nice as it was to receive $60,000 from the state, via PG&E, Cratty wants to hire crews and spend it as soon as he can.

Sherwood Firewise, which executed a successful evacuation of Brooktrails during the Oak Fire last week, did so using a variety of methods Cratty says the county Firesafe Council can help smaller communities get access to. 

If you want to sign up for the free home hardening program or find out how to start a firesafe council in your neighborhood or make a donation, you can sign up on the website, by email, or by phone. The website is, and the email is

The phone number is 462-3662.



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