According to US Department of Veterans Affairs records, 240,000 veterans live in the counties affected by October’s wildfires. More than 213,000 acres have burned, an estimated 5,700 structures destroyed and 41 people have been killed. 40,000 people remain evacuated.
Last week Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for Solano County, Napa, Sonoma and Yuba counties, and Butte, Lake, Mendocino, Nevada and Orange counties, due to the effects of the devastating fires burning across California.
This week, disaster Local Assistance Centers are opening in those areas to help residents begin rebuilding their lives. CalVet staff and county veteran services officers will be there helping veterans file claims, replace service-related and benefit documents, and access job placement assistance to begin rebuilding their lives.
CalVet has posted a schedule for local assistance centers and will update it regularly.
Any veteran needing assistance who is unable to get to a local assistance center near them should call their county veteran service office for help.
California government entities represented at the local assistance centers include:
Department of Motor Vehicles (driver’s license, identification and vehicle registration)
Employment Development Department (unemployment assistance)
Department of Public Health-Vital Statistics (birth, death, marriage records)
Department of Veterans Affairs (military records, awards, benefits)
Department of Social Services (State Supplemental Grant Program)
Housing and Community Development (licensing for manufactured homes)
Department of Tax and Fee Administration
Department of Insurance
Contractors State License Board (rebuilding, licensing)