By Anne Makovec

SANTA ROSA (KPIX 5) — Recovery efforts continued Tuesday in area impacted by the Kincade Fire as the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors worked toward making their community more fire safe.

Tuesday morning, the board approved a one-half cent sales tax measure for wildfire prevention, emergency alerts, and response that will be on the ballot next March.

“The easy part is the vote to put it on the ballet and the harder part will be to get it passed and convince folks it is the right thing to do,” said Sonoma County Supervisor David Rabbitt. “We look forward to that challenge as we go forward because I do think it is the right thing to do.”

In the meantime, Sonoma County is doing an emergency household hazardous waste sweep of all properties destroyed by the Kincade Fire. That includes 374 structures, 174 of which are homes.

Crews are inspecting properties and removing things like pesticides, batteries, propane tanks and paints.

“When they take the ash, they wrap it in plastic,” said Deputy County Administrator Michael Gossman. “They do something called burrito wrapping and so that way as it’s transported, it’s not flying all over the place. This stuff’s not safe.”

That phase is being paid for by the county at a cost of $750,000, which county officals hope will at least be partially reimbursed by the state.

Property owners can then work with their insurance to hire a licensed contractor to remove the remaining fire debris.

“They’re going to have to have soil testing done both before and after, just to make sure that that soil is safe,” said Gossman. “Not just for them, but any future property owners and the environment that surrounds that property.”

Tuesday afternoon, the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors is holding public workshop to consider changes to the building and fire safety code.

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