Last week, Missoula County Officials voted to pass the Community Fire Protection Plan, and according to County Commissioner Dave Strohmaier, the county will also be hiring for a new position, just as fire season traditionally heats up.

“Sometime after the beginning of our next fiscal year, which starts on July 1, we are going to hire a dedicated person who will serve as our Wildfire Preparedness Coordinator for Missoula County,” Strohmaier said. “They will focus on implementing this plan and also implementing here locally what is called the nation cohesive strategy for wildland fire here in Missoula County.”

Though this fire protection plan is updated and includes new data, the concept isn’t new at all for Missoula.

“Clearly we have wildfires in Missoula County and this is an opportunity for us to be real proactive,” Strohmaier said. “I am thankful that when the original plan was adopted back in 2005, we were proactive at that point and we are certainly proactive now in seeing the need in light of changing circumstances.”

The plan was forged in conjunction with the Office of Emergency Management, the Montana DNRC, the US Forest Service, and even private foresters.