Jackson Bill to Help Montecito and Other California Homeowners Recover Mudslide Losses Passes Off Senate Floor

May 17, 2018

SACRAMENTO— Legislation by Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara) to help Montecito and other California homeowners whose homes have been damaged or destroyed by fire-induced mudslides, passed off the Senate Floor today on a 25 to 11 vote.

Senate Bill 917 clarifies that, under current law, an insurance policy covers loss or damage resulting from a landslide if that landslide was attributable to a condition already covered by the policy, such as wildfires.

The bill would help Montecito homeowners whose home insurance coverage of mudslide losses were under question following the Montecito debris flow, which killed at least 21 residents, injured many others and damaged or destroyed almost 10 percent of Montecito’s homes.

While most residents are required to have property insurance, few had purchased optional flood insurance. The mudslide resulted when significant rains fell upon a burn scar left by the Thomas Fire, the largest wildfire in California history.

“Following a traumatic event like the Montecito debris flow, homeowners deserve accurate, fair and timely resolution of their claims,” said Senator Jackson. “SB 917 will help California homeowners who are still struggling to rebuild by ensuring insurance providers cover losses incurred from these fire-induced events.”

Senate Bill 917 now heads to the State Assembly.

Jackson represents the 19th Senate District, which includes all of Santa Barbara County and western Ventura County.