A program to help homeowners replace fire-prone wood shake roofs with nonflammable roofs in the Lake Valley Fire Protection District is underway, with the first roof replaced in January in the Black Bart neighborhood.
The fire district received a grant for its Hazardous Wood Roof Replacement Program from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and California Office of Emergency Services in 2012.
The program will replace roofs on homes in Meyers, Meeks Bay, Fallen Leaf Lake and South Lake Tahoe. It pays for 70 percent of the replacement cost up to $7,500.
David Klecker got the wood shake roof on his Black Bart home replaced with non-combustible composite shingles last month. It was the first home to go through the program.
Another 365 homes in the district that were approved through a prior application phase of the program are slated to have their wood shake roofs replaced either this year or next. Owners must get bids for the work and have the work done and then are reimbursed.
The district is no longer taking applications for the program.
“We’re really excited about this. It’s something we’ve been hounding after for years and a new program for FEMA, so we’re kind of the test site,” Lake Valley Fire Protection District spokeswoman Leona Allen said.
As part of the program, homeowners must demonstrate to Lake Valley Fire Protection District that they have satisfactory defensible space around their houses.
Wood shake roofs are no longer allowed on new construction. “Most of them are ancient, dried out, really flammable. This will be huge for our neighborhoods,” Allen said.
“It’s just positive all the way around. We get defensible space on the homes, nonflammable roofs on the homes and work for our roofers. It’s just positive for the community.”