Teller County Requesting State Wildfire Emergency Declaration

The Teller County Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) is in discussion with the State of Colorado and Governor Jared Polis to request the State declare a state-wide wildfire emergency.
As support for the request, the BoCC cited the current High Park Fire, in addition to the recent and numerous fires in the area and around the State. At such an early point in the season and with limited resources being shared across the nation, we believe conditions and demands for scarce resources will only worsen with time.
As of Monday, May 16, 2022, the High Park Fire, which has burned approximately 1600 acres in rough terrain since Thursday, and has forced the pre-evacuation or evacuation of a total of 580 homes, approximately 400 people and 75 rural businesses. The Teller County Assessor’s Office reports that the total value of the evacuated properties is approximately $56.9 million, with another $216.1 million in the pre-evacuation area.
It is estimated that the total cost of fighting just the High Park Fire is approximately two million dollars after just 5 days, which could exhaust the Teller County Fire Contingency Fund before the conclusion of the 2022 fire season. Depending on the severity and duration of the fire, total cost could reach $300 million, with the addition of a Federal Type I Incident Management Team, a large aerial team attack, and the numerous local departments
who are providing personnel and resources to fight this fire.
Board Chairman Dan Williams noted “While we are being fiscally responsible and maximizing cost-sharing, mission success in fighting this fire and saving human lives and property is paramount. Based on the early date of this fire and our extreme drought conditions, there is a high probability that we could face our next fire with a depleted fund.”
Maps of the affected areas, health information, and other fire related-resources can be found at: