Fire Recovery Resources

For residents and property owners in the fire-affected area of the September 7, 2020 Babb Road Fire, the resources below will help to navigate the paperwork and systems.

For Long Term Recovery Organization news and important documents, please visit this page.

LTRO Board members and Operations Team members are available here.

For Town of Malden building codes and policies, please visit their website @

Pine Creek Community LTRO Resident Request Form

Pine Creek Community LTRO Resident Request Form

Assistance for fire-related recovery support is available. Click on the documents that reflect your assistance needs:




First and foremost, if you are planning any improvements or additions to your property (such as placement of a propane tank, fencing, etc.), PLEASE CONTACT THE TOWN OF MALDEN FIRST TO MAKE CERTAIN YOUR PLANS ARE IN COMPLIANCE WITH ANY EXISTING ORDINANCES OR OTHER REGULATIONS.

If you are planning to build a dwelling in Malden, the following information will help you determine what you need to do and when, the forms required, and who to contact for answers to any questions. This information can be downloaded as a PDF here and links
to websites and documents are included at the end of this page.

Important Considerations

TYPE OF HOME: If you are considering a tiny home, a modular home, or park model home, you should read Whitman County’s “What you need to know about tiny homes” document. THIS DOCUMENT ALSO CONTAINS INFORMATION ABOUT THE OTHER TYPES OF HOMES MENTIONED ABOVE.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? (see article “Mobile/Manufactured/Modular/Park Home”)

~Tiny Home (minimum size is 400 sq. ft. to be approved by Whitman County)
~Modular Home (must be pit set – 32 inches minimum below ground level)
~Manufactured Home (on runners or supports and needs to be anchored above ground)
~Park Model Home (although considered a recreational vehicle, these are transportable and primarily designed for long-term or permanent placement at a destination where an RV or mobile home is allowed. There are restrictions on long-term RV use as a dwelling inside the town limits – check with the town clerk).

⇨ ⇨ ⇨ IMPORTANT NOTE: Any manufactured, modular or trailer home must have a licensed, bonded contractor that is specifically licensed to install those types of homes and that these homes have different rules for installation than stick built homes that are governed by Labor and Industries (L&I) of Washington State.


Typically, Whitman County will allow constructing residential structures on native Palouse Loess silt and clay that has not been disturbed. If you must build on existing fill or new fill, there are many requirements and considerations. SOME of those considerations are listed below. Please contact Ginny Rumiser for complete information and specific answers to your questions before you begin building (contact information below).

IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO BUILD ON EXISTING FILL:  Where sites are planned on existing fill, Whitman County often requires a geotechnical evaluation to consider the fill depth and characteristics. This has a more substantial cost than testing and should be avoided by positioning structures on native soil wherever possible. NOTE: Structures spanning native soil and fill are prone to differential settlement.

IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO CREATE NEW FILL: Whitman County will typically want to have verification that the subgrade is free of debris and vegetation before placing fill. Fill must be put in layers and compacted and certified for each layer.  The Whitman County Building Department MUST be given each certification report for the number of layers put in for the fill.  Without that information, they cannot and will not issue a building permit for the site.  GPI in Pullman is one local company that does fill inspections and certifications. To contact GPI, call Travis Wambeke at 509-339-2000 or email at

Whitman County Environmental Health has issued guidelines concerning new construction and the use of existing cesspoolsIf the cesspool can be located, pumped, and assessed and is found to need no corrective actions, it can be used in new home construction.

Construction Permitting Process

Construction Permitting Process

Important Contacts for Permitting/Construction Process

Contact Information

Septic Systems - qualified contractors and inspectors
Washington State Energy Code


WHITMAN HELP: Resources for Whitman County Residents, Small Businesses, and Nonprofits
Find resources for individuals & families, businesses, and nonprofits. Resources include mental health information, food, transportation, loans, grants, and resources for online learning. Read more on the Whitman Help website.
Whitman County Building Permit Application Information
Whitman County Building & Development Division

Whitman County Building & Development Division

Palouse Resource Guide

Palouse Resource Guide
The purpose of the Palouse Resource Guide is to help individuals living in Whitman & Latah County find resources to support their health, their family’s health & their community’s health.

Property Tax Exemption Form
Below is the tax exemption form which allows property tax relief for new construction in areas where an emergency has been declared.

Once completed, residents need submit the form to the county assessor’s office.

The property tax exemption is good for 3 years and goes through 2026.  This means a person could rebuild or improve their home on the same property in 2023 for example and still take advantage of 3 years of tax exemption. They must rebuild on the same property that they lived on pre-disaster to be eligible.

Property Tax Exemption Form


Whitman County Public Health

Services include:

  • immunizations
  • WIC
  • nutrition
  • children with special needs
  • Safe kids (car seats, safe sleep, bike helmets)
  • WA health insurance plan finder
  • Environment health (septic, permits, well testing, food safety)





Local Counseling Resources

CHAS Behavioral Health Center 5601 N Lidgerwood St, Ste 223, 509-555-8200 or 866-907-8200 | CRISIS LINE: 877-266-1818 

Fraley & Associates, PLLC 815 West 7th Avenue, Suite 200, 509-710-8171

Frontier Behavioral Health 7 South Howard (509) 838-4651 | CRISIS LINE:  509-838-4428

Passages Family Support 1700 S Assembly St, 509-892-9241

Spokane VA Center 4815 N Assembly St, (509) 434-7000 / 800-325-7940


Coaching Into Care  US Department of Veteran Affairs, 888-823-7458

Lewiston VA Clinic  1630 23rd Avenue, Building 2, Lewiston, 208-746-7784

Marimn Health & Wellness 427 12th Street, Plummer, 208-686-1931

North Idaho VA Clinic  915 Emma Avenue, Coeur d’Alene, 208-665-1700


Alternatives to Violence on the Palouse (ATVP), 1125 NW Nye St, Pullman, 24/7: 1-877-334-2887 | Whitman: 1-509-332-HELP (4357) | Latah: 1-208-883-HELP (4357)

Palouse Psychiatry & Behavioral Health, 840 SE Bishop Blvd, Ste 103, Pullman, 509-339-2394

Palouse River Counseling, 340 NE Maple St, Pullman, 509-334-1133

Paradise Creek Counseling and Consulting 520 S. Asbury, Ste 2, Moscow, 208-882-2566

University of Idaho Counseling Services, Mary E. Forney Hall Room 306, Moscow, 208-885-6716

Weeks & Vietri Counseling & Community Services, 818 S Washington St, Moscow, 208-882-8514

WSU Counseling & Psychological Services, Washington Building, Rm 302, Pullman, 509-335-4511

Roadmap to RecoveryTM Virtual Events - United Policyholders
United Policyholders has scheduled a series of virtual workshops in May 2021 for people affected by 2020 wildfires in Oregon and Washington. These Roadmap to RecoveryTM Virtual Events are online and FREE.
Please add these dates to your calendar and plan to attend.
Mechanics of Rebuilding Your Dwelling: Thursday, May 6, 2021, 4:00 PM PT
This webinar will feature expert guidance on selecting and hiring a builder, paying for materials, and navigating lender and insurance requirements
Navigating the Contents Portion of Your Claim: Tuesday, May 18, 2021, 5:00 PM PT
Learn how to tally up personal property/contents items that were damaged or destroyed so you can collect the full amount owed on those items
Survivor to Survivor Forums
Bring your questions and connect with other survivors and trained UP volunteers with personal experience recovering from previous wildfires
Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 7:00 PM PT
Tuesday, May 18, 2021, 7:00 PM PT


Crisis Lines

We encourage community members who may need or want some grief counseling at this time to reach out for assistance.

The Washington State Mental Health Crisis Line serving eastern Washington is 888 544-9986 (24/7/365).
This service is entirely FREE.

The 24/7 hotline for Pullman-based Palouse River Counseling is 509 334-1133. Use of the hotline is FREE of charge. Counseling appointments, however, will require use of medical insurance or direct payment.

988 Suicide Lifeline 988

833-6546 Teen Link 833-6546

Crisis Text Line  741741

Alternatives to Violence on the Palouse (ATVP), 1125 NW Nye St, Pullman, 24/7: 1-877-334-2887 | Whitman: 1-509-332-HELP (4357) | Latah: 1-208-883-HELP (4357)

Community Grief Support Group

For more information, email


Whitman County ROE for Debris Testing and Cleanup Phase2
🚨I MPORTANT ! 🚨𝗡𝗘𝗪 𝗙𝗢𝗥𝗠 𝗙𝗢𝗥 𝗣𝗥𝗢𝗣𝗘𝗥𝗧𝗬 𝗧𝗘𝗦𝗧𝗜𝗡𝗚 𝗔𝗡𝗗 𝗖𝗟𝗘𝗔𝗡-𝗨𝗣: This form covers right of entry for TESTING and CLEAN-UP and overrides all previous ROE forms, including the most recent Ecology form. 𝗗𝗘𝗔𝗗𝗟𝗜𝗡𝗘 𝗜𝗦 𝗠𝗔𝗬 𝟭𝟰.
We feel your pain — this has been a long and confusing process!! 🤯 But now Washington State Emergency Management Association and other federal and state partners have devised a streamlined program to facilitate safe removal and handling of burn debris and ash from residential property. To obtain this service a homeowner MUST complete the proper paperwork to allow these agencies to enter onto and clean up their property.
Click on the link below to find the form, which is also on the LTRO website. Our new Disaster Relief Manager, Tye Watts, will have access to the phone starting Monday, May 10. His email is valid now and he is able to receive completed forms:
Residents can also return forms via mail or in person to: Whitman County, ATTN: Bill Tensfeld Emergency Manager, Office phone (509) 397- 5605, 310 N. Suite 101 Main St. Colfax, WA 99111.
Thank you for your patience.



Consent to enter property form
This form is for property owners to give consent to Washington State employees and authorized representatives of the Department of Ecology to enter and have access to the property located at the designated address. Consent to Enter Form
Goat Vegetation Right of Entry Form

This ROE form is for participating in the use of goats to reduce fire fuel. Please provide a completed copy to the town clerk in person or by email (the form must be signed by the property owner). This is a free service offered to the Pine Creek Community (Malden and Pine City residents).

Goat Vegetation ROE form

Asbestos testing and assessment

Many of the structures damaged by recent fires in Eastern Washington are old enough that asbestos is a concern. The Department of Ecology is offering free asbestos assessments in these wildfire-damaged areas.

Ecology is urging community members to allow us to assist you in assessing structures impacted by these fires. We can schedule asbestos testing and assessments at no-cost to property owners. Read more here.

Team Rubicon Consent to Enter Property Form
FORM DUE MAY 19 2022 for Team Rubicon assistance in clearing debris from a resident’s property.. If there are more applications than what they have time to clear, properties with the most dangerous conditions or greatest need will be prioritized for assistance.
Team Rubicon will be in the Pine Creek Community May 20-22.


Veterans Community Response Release Form

Veterans Community Response will be in Malden and Pine City on June 17th- 19th to provide tree removal. Residents need to complete the release form and return to Town Hall.

Veterans Community Response Release form


SBA Fact Sheet for Disaster Loans
The deadline to apply for physical damages through SBA is April 19, 2021, and the deadline to apply for economic injury is November 9, 2021. All impacted by the Babb Road Fire who could benefit from low interest loans to aid in recovery, are encouraged to apply.

Everyone can apply! If you were affected by the Babb Road Fire, any income level, insured or uninsured, you may be eligible.

SBA Fact Sheet


SBA Disaster Assistance Press Release 02-09-21
SBA Offers Disaster Assistance to Washington Businesses and Residents Affected by Wildfires and Straight-line Winds

Virtual Recovery Centers to Open Wednesday, Feb. 10

Today Whitman County was approved for SBA disaster assistance which includes all the surrounding counties for both physical damages and economic injury.

The deadline to apply for physical damages through SBA is April 19, 2021, and the deadline to apply for economic injury is November 9, 2021. All impacted by the Babb Road Fire who could benefit from low interest loans to aid in recovery, are encouraged to apply. See full press release here:

SBA Disaster Assistance Press Release 02-09-21WA

SBA Disaster Relief press release 02-04-21
SBA Disaster Assistance Available to Private Nonprofit Organizations in Washington

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Low-interest federal disaster loans are now available to certain private nonprofit organizations in Washington following President Biden’s federal disaster declaration for Public Assistance as a result of wildfires and straight-line winds that occurred Sept. 1-19, 2020, announced acting Administrator Tami L. Perriello of the U.S. Small Business Administration. Private nonprofits that provide essential services of a governmental nature are eligible for assistance. See full press release here:  SBA Disaster Assistance PR 02-02-21

SBA Resource Partners Flyer

This list of U.S. Small Business Administration’s Washington Resource Partners offer a variety of services to help businesses recover from the effects of wildfires and straight-line winds.

SBA Asistencia de Desastre Communica de Presa 02-09-21
SBA Ofrece Asistencia de Desastre a los Negocios y Residentes del estado de Washington Afectados por los Incendios Forestales y Vientos Rectilíneos

Se Abren Centros de Recuperación Virtuales el Miércoles, 10 de Febrero

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Préstamos federales de desastre a bajos intereses están disponibles para los negocios y los residentes del estado de Washington que se vieron afectados por los incendios forestales y vientos rectilíneos que ocurrieron del 1 al 19 de Septiembre de 2020, anunció la Administradora interina Tami L. Perriello de la Administración Federal de Pequeños Negocios (SBA). SBA actuó bajo su propia autoridad para declarar un desastre después de la negación de la solicitud del estado de una declaración de desastre mayor para asistencia individual el 5 de Febrero de 2021.


La declaración del desastre hace asistencia de la SBA disponible para los condados de Adams, Asotin, Columbia, Franklin, Garfield, Lincoln, Spokane y Whitman en el estado de Washington; y los condados de Benewah, Latah and Nez Perce en el estado de Idaho.


“SBA está firmemente comprometida en brindar a Washington una respuesta efectiva y enfocada al cliente, y estaremos allí para proporcionar acceso a préstamos federales de desastre para ayudar a los negocios y los residentes afectados a financiar su recuperación,” afirmó Perriello. “Lograr que nuestros negocios y comunidades se recuperen y vuelvan a funcionar después de un desastre es la prioridad número uno de SBA.”


“Préstamos federales de desastre a bajos intereses están disponibles para negocios de cualquier tamaño, la mayoría de las organizaciones sin fines de lucro privadas, dueños de casas e inquilinos que sufrieron daños o destrucción en su propiedad por causa del desastre,” dijo Tanya N. Garfield, Directora del Centro de Desastres Regionales del Oeste de la Administración Federal de Pequeños Negocios.


En consideración a los problemas de salud pública debido al pandémico Coronavirus, el Miércoles, 10 de Febrero de 2021, la SBA establecerá un Centro Virtual de Recuperación de Negocios para darles asistencia personalizada a los dueños de negocios. Además, la SBA también abrirá un Centro Virtual de Promoción y Asistencia para ayudarles a los dueños de casa e inquilinos. Representantes del Servicio al Cliente estarán disponibles a los dueños de negocios e individuos para contestar las preguntas sobre el programa de préstamos para desastres de SBA, explicar el proceso de solicitar un préstamo y ayudarle a cada persona a completar su solicitud de préstamo electrónicamente.

SBA Asistencia de Desastre Communica de Presa 02-09-21WA (Spanish)

FEMA Non-Designated Denial Letter 02-04-21

Town of Malden / Pine Creek Community Restoration Long Term Recovery Organization

February 8, 2021

RE:  FEMA Declarations: Public Assistance / Individual Assistance

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) declared a disaster for the Babb Road Wildfire on Thursday, February 4th. This disaster declaration approves funding for Public Assistance (PA) and Hazard Mitigation (HGMP) programs. A subsequent declaration for Individual Assistance (IA) was denied by FEMA on Friday, February 5th.

Public Assistance from FEMA will help town and county governments, and some non-profit agencies, replace and repair approved items lost in the fire. Examples would include public buildings such as town hall and the fire station, and damages to roads caused by the fire or debris removal. Hazard Mitigation means improvements which will make the community less vulnerable to future disasters. The positive decision regarding PA will help with many of the challenges to clean up and rebuild the backbone of the community.

Individual Assistance, funding for individuals and households, will not be provided by FEMA. The full FEMA letter can be read here. This denial was “…based on our review of all the information available, including the joint Individual Assistance Preliminary Damage Assessments, it has been determined that the impact to the individuals and households from this event was not of such severity and magnitude to warrant the designation…”

The Town of Malden and the Pine Creek LTRO are deeply disappointed and disagree with this decision. Despite the unfortunate denial of IA, we are still moving ahead and remain committed to rebuilding our communities as quickly as possible. The decision to appeal this IA denial lies with Washington State and we know that they have our best interests in mind and will continue to help us identify additional recovery resources whether from the State or the Federal government.

In light of the FEMA denial, we do expect a disaster declaration by the Small Business Administration (SBA) to be made within the next few days. This declaration can make available low-interest loans of up to $200,000 to replace homes lost to the fire, and loans of up to $40,000 to replace personal property. Information on how to access this help will be published as soon as the SBA makes that declaration.

Nevertheless, we continue to be grateful for the incredible support and funding for long-term recovery efforts from so many people, charitable organizations and through the established national network of charities known as Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters, or VOAD.

FEMA Non-Designated Denial Letter

Get in Touch. Get Involved.

Send us a message if you need recovery assistance or have ideas about helping our community rebuild.

Tell us how we are doing.  We want to hear from you.

Contact Us

P.O. Box 47, Rosalia, WA 99170

Email:  |   Tel: 509-939-6005

14 W. Moreland Avenue, Malden, WA