Oregon’s top fire official resigned on Saturday, as forest people were angry there and in other western states.
FOX 12 Oregon reports Marshall Jim Walker submitted an resignation letter to the Superintendent of the Oregon State Police when he was placed on paid administrative leave.
OregonLive.com reported that no reason for Walker’s departure was officially stated, but sources said State Superintendent of Police Travis Hampton had lost confidence in Walker’s ability to deal with the state’s wilderness crisis.
Chief Deputy Mariana Ruiz-Mandir has been appointed as the new Fire Marshal of the state. The news outlet quoted a source as saying that earlier when Walker was placed on leave, he had given the Ruiz-Mandir the job of managing the state’s wildfire response.
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“Marianna has led with grace, transparency and courage,” Gov. Kate Brown said in a statement. “He embodies the experience Oregon needs to face this crisis at this time.”
Hampton also released a statement of support for Ruiz-Temple.
“Mariana is assuming this situation because Oregon is in an unprecedented crisis, demanding an immediate response,” he said according to OregonLive.com.
“This response and circumstances required a leadership change. I have full faith in Mariana to lead OSFM [Office of the State Fire Marshal] Operations through this critical time. He is tested, reliable and respected – with a rare combination of technical qualifications in field operations and administration. ”
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Forex reported 1 million acres in Oregon burned last week with two of the largest incidents in the Portland metro area, Fox 12 reported.
Oregon is one of seven western states that receive assistance from the federal government to deal with wildfire damage. The others are California, Colorado, Montana, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.