Yakima taxpayers on hook for $157K in wildfire costs

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — Authorities say the city of Yakima will be held responsible for nearly $160,000 in firefighting costs related to a fire started by police officers last year.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports the state Attorney General’s Office recently notified the city it would be required to pay fire suppression costs because the fire was caused by the negligence of two Yakima police officers.

The fire that burned nearly 5 square miles was reported June 27 and contained June 30.

An investigation by the state Department of Natural Resources concluded that two officers who were target shooting caused the fire.

The investigation shows one of the bullets from a live fire exercise severed a power line owned by Pacific Power Corp., causing it to fall to the ground and start the fire.