As the calendar year flips to 2023, it is time to reflect on another year of incredible work done at the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) to lead the coordination of emergencies and disasters, including multiple catastrophic wildfires, earthquakes, and a historic heat wave.
Below is a timeline of 2022 events:
- To ensure that every school in California was able to access a ready supply of free and convenient personal protective equipment (PPE), Cal OES partnered with the State Department of Education to distribute nearly 21 million additional masks to County Boards of Education across the state.
- Strengthening efforts to protect Californians from hate-motivated violence, Cal OES announced the awarding of $47.5 million statewide to 290 community groups.
- Building upon the success of California’s first-in-the-nation earthquake alert system, Governor Gavin Newsom announced a new HomeBase feature within the MyShake app to better serve Californians and keep surrounding communities safe.
- Governor Newsom proclaimed a state of emergency in several counties across the state to support the ongoing response to winter storms.
- California launches the Prepare California grant program designed to build more resilient communities.
- Governor Newsom unveiled his proposed 2022-23 budget – the California Blueprint – which included $2 billion in funding and 1,507 positions for Cal OES.
- With one of the biggest sporting events in the world returning to California, Cal OES teamed with state, local and federal Partners on Super Bowl safety and security.
- Governor Newsom announced $38 million in new grants for community-based organizations through the Homeless Youth Emergency Services and Housing Program.
- Cal OES awarded $200,000 to the Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office to continue to improve the system of sharing information for suspected child abuse cases.
- Working to reduce the long-term risks of natural disasters, Cal OES applied for $250 million in federal funding to support local communities.
- Cal OES shipped life-saving medical supplies to aid Ukrainian refugees, including a 50-bed field medical station, oxygen concentrators and personal protective equipment.
- Continuing efforts to protect Californians from domestic violence during the COVID-19 pandemic, Cal OES awarded $2.1 million to statewide community organizations.
- Cal OES distributed 200,000 COVID-19 at-home testing kits to vulnerable community members.
- Taking action to protect Californians from abuse that occurs in a relationship, Cal OES awarded $1.35 million to community-based organizations across the state.
- In recognition of Earthquake Preparedness Month, Cal OES drove across California with an earthquake simulator and experts on hand to provide communities information on how to be prepared before an earthquake and what to do during and after one.
- California deployed firefighting resources to New Mexico in response to ongoing statewide wildfires.
- Cal OES announced $20 million in grants for local partners to provide services to Californians who have experienced human trafficking.
- Recognizing April as National 9-1-1 Education Month, Cal OES joined 9-1-1 for Kids in honoring three youth and three dispatchers for exemplary service during an emergency.
- Cal OES granted $13 million to 46 community-based organizations for prevention programs as part of a continued effort to provide support to sexual and domestic violence survivors statewide.
- Governor Newsom’s May Budget Revision continued the state’s efforts to prioritize investments to strengthen emergency capacity and capabilities to respond to increasingly complex disasters, security threats, and emergencies.
- Cal OES announced a $3 million grant to the Karuk Tribe in Northern California to reduce wildfire risks on Tribal lands in the state.
- On National Gun Violence Awareness Day, Governor Newsom announced a new campaign to make California schools and communities safer through a community-based outreach campaign to promote Gun Violence Restraining Orders also known as “red flag” laws.
- Cal OES deployed a crisis communication expert to Montana in response to historic flooding for a 14-day deployment to support the State’s Emergency Coordination Center.
- Cal OES awarded the first-ever resiliency funding to disaster vulnerable communities through its first-in-the-nation Prepare California Program.
- Cal OES awarded $25 million in grants to 93 community partners through the Listos California campaign.
- Governor Newsom proclaimed a state of emergency for Siskiyou County due to the effects of the McKinney Fire, as well as in Mariposa County in response to the Oak Fire.
- Cal OES deployed a two-person Recovery Team to New Mexico to assist in the recovery efforts due to historic statewide wildfires.
- Governor Newsom deployed five California-based members of a FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Incident Support Team to help coordinate federal search and rescue operations due to disastrous flooding in Kentucky.
- In response to a monkeypox outbreak, Governor Newsom declared a State of Emergency to bolster the state’s vaccination efforts.
- California secured more than $180 million in federal funding to support local communities most at-risk for hazards that include flood, earthquake, wildfire, drought, and sea level rise.
- Cal OES and the California Military Department announced the creation of the first all-hazards fire engine strike team – known as Team Blaze – operated by a state military department.
- California deployed mutual aid firefighting resources to Oregon to help combat the Rum Creek Fire.
- Cal OES Director Mark Ghilarducci, who served in his role since 2012, formally announced his impending retirement, effective at the end of 2022.
- As a statewide record heat wave intensified, Governor Newsom extended emergency response to increase energy supplies and reduce demand.
- Amid unrelenting extreme heat and dangerous fire conditions, Cal OES strategically prepositioned firefighting resources in a state-record 22 counties.
- Governor Newsom deployed emergency personnel to Florida to aid with response efforts due to Hurricane Ian.
- In an effort to safeguard waterways affected by the 2022 wildfires, Cal OES, in coordination with the Department of Water Resources (DWR) and the California Conservation Corps (CCC), announced the completion of emergency watershed protection work for the Oak and McKinney fires.
- Governor Newsom deployed Urban Search and Rescue teams to Puerto Rico to support Hurricane Fiona
- Governor Newsom directed the creation of a new multi-agency, cross-jurisdictional taskforce of enforcement agencies designed to better coordinate agencies combatting illegal cannabis operations and transnational criminal organizations.
- In advance of the annual Great California ShakeOut, Cal OES crafted a statewide road trip with stops in six cities to promote earthquake preparedness, including the opportunity for the public to ride an earthquake simulator.
- Cal OES completed the property cleanup of residences for 2021 wildfires statewide, allowing property owners the greenlight to begin the rebuilding process.
- California’s first-in-the-nation Earthquake Early Warning system provided advanced notification to more than 2.2 million Californians before shaking occurred for a 5.1 magnitude earthquake that was felt throughout the Bay Area.
- Cal OES invited state, local and federal leaders focused on community resilience to the 2022 California Mitigation Summit in Sacramento.
- California partnered with Apple to provide direct-to-consumer satellite emergency services as part of the state’s continued efforts to provide communities with the resources they need to stay safe during an emergency.
- Cal OES announced the first round of awardees for the Prepare California ‘Match’ Program amounting to more than $15 million in state funding.
- In December, Cal OES coordinated with local government partners to establish Warming Centers and provide resources to communities such as generators, comfort kits, or other necessities to ensure that residents stay safe.
- Working aggressively to ensure the safety of Californians, Cal OES oversaw the state’s emergency response to a magnitude 6.4 earthquake near Ferndale in Humboldt County on Dec. 20.
- Incorporating new technology, Cal OES upgraded its fleet of Type I fire engines with increased and improved storage as firefighters combat a year-round fire season, upgraded with tools such as the jaws of life for rescue missions, and upgraded lighting and technology for visibility.
- Cal OES hosted a three-day Public Information Officer course to train other state agencies on the intricacies of deploying to a Joint Information Center. This training specified in prepping PIOs on how to respond to the State Operations Center in the event of a disaster.