OC Outspends San Diego County for Firefighting

Remember those killer fires that have engulfed huge swaths of San Diego County in recent years? Orange County has suffered its own (a shout out to the '08 Freeway Complex Fire, yo!), but our neighboring county to the south has had to put it up with repeated massive wildfires that past few years.

So, it's surprising what a study released this week shows about spending on fire services in each county.

OC Outspends San Diego County for Firefighting

The nine-page study by the National University System Institute for Policy Research shows that in fiscal 2009-10, San Diego County fire agencies cumulatively spent $152.85 per resident. By comparison, Orange County fire departments spent $177.98 per resident.

You can read the full report, which tracks spending at 70 Southern California fire agencies, here.

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The spending differences have resulted in lower staffing in San Diego County versus OC. There are 8.5 fire department employees for every 10,000 residents in San Diego County and 9.01 in Orange County, according to the study. The spending levels have remained steady the past five years.

Los Angeles County spends more than SD and OC, shelling out $271.71 per every resident and employing 11.03 fire employees per every 10,000 residents, the report finds.


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