With its vast size and population, California requires a coordinated effort from multiple agencies to effectively respond to emergencies such as wildland and structure fires, floods, earthquakes, hazardous material spills, and medical aids. That is why the CAL FIRE Cooperative Fire Protection Program plays a crucial role in bringing state, federal, and local agencies together through contracts and agreements.


These agreements allow CAL FIRE to be the lead agency in providing fire, rescue, dispatch, and paramedic services to cities and towns in California that are not designated as state responsibility. This unified command relationship ensures that all resources are utilized to the fullest potential during emergencies, leading to greater success in response efforts. The CAL FIRE Cooperative Fire Protection Program staff are dedicated to coordinating these agreements and contracts, ensuring that emergency response in California is carried out smoothly and effectively.

International Visitors

California’s rich history, innovative spirit, and incredibly diverse geography and demographics continue to attract visitors from all over the world.  The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), has built strong working relationships with international partners and organizations through collaborative agreements. 

The Deputy Chief of State, Federal, and International Programs within CAL FIRE is the initial point of contact for all international affairs.  This includes negotiating and developing memorandums of understanding and coordinating international visits.   International agreements foster cooperation and a commitment to share best practices, lessons learned, training opportunities, and mutual exchange of technical knowledge and expertise.


To facilitate safe and secure visits, international visitors requesting to tour CAL FIRE, need to complete and submit the Foreign National Screening Form and the following documents to CAL FIRE, 15 days before an official visit:

Submit complete package to:  InternationalVisitRequests@fire.ca.gov

Volunteer Fire Capacity (VFC) Grant

The Volunteer Fire Capacity (VFC) Program is a federally funded grant program that allows California to provide local and rural fire departments with minor firefighting, training, communications and safety equipment for their volunteer firefighters. The VFC Program is not intended for major equipment (fire engines, vehicles, etc.) or Capital repairs. The VFC Program has a 50/50 match requirement which means that the applying department must be able to meet the intended grant award, dollar for dollar. Awards for departments are set at a minimum of $500 with a maximum of $20,000. Amounts may be adjusted based on the grant funding available. For additional information please contact Megan Esfandiary at Megan.Esfandiary@fire.ca.gov or Bryan Giambrone at Bryan.Giambrone@fire.ca.gov.

Applications Period Open.


To apply for Volunteer Fire Capacity funding, visit VFC Solicitation.

You must have a Portal account through the eCivis Grants Portal webpage in order to apply for funding. Go to eCivis Portal Login to create your Portal account. This free account is where you will create a user profile and VFC application for submission. Please reference the Procedural Guide below with help navigating the application submission process. Please also download the 2024 VFC Budget Worksheet below to submit with your application.

Under what is known as the California Master Mutual Aid Agreement, CAL FIRE assists other fire departments within the State when local resources are depleted and Department resources are available, regardless of the type of disaster. In turn, CAL FIRE can access the local government fire departments through the same agreement for assistance in wildland fire suppression.

The Governor's Office of Emergency Services (OES) can also request CAL FIRE assistance with non-fire emergencies when the Governor has declared a State of Emergency. Such was the case during the Northridge earthquake of 1993, Napa earthquake of 2014, floods of 1997 and the Oroville Dam incident in 2017 when CAL FIRE provided flood-fighting crews and incident management and logistical support services.

When California is under siege with wildland fires across the state and resources are stretched thin, agreements with our local government cooperators through the California Fire Assistance Agreement (CFAA) and the California Military Department provide for California National Guard resources. The local government agencies provide personnel and equipment throughout the state and the National Guard provide Fire Crews, C-130 aircraft known as Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System (MAFFS), water dropping and medical rescue helicopters, support personnel, communications equipment, and other specialized resources.

Since the 1940s, local government entities such as cities, counties and districts have contracted with CAL FIRE to provide many forms of emergency services for their communities. CAL FIRE provides full-service fire protection to many of the citizens of California through the administration of 118 cooperative fire protection agreements in 31 of the State's 58 counties, 39 cities, 25 fire districts and 42 other special districts and service areas. As a full-service fire department CAL FIRE responds to wildland fires, structure fires, floods, hazardous material spills, swift water rescues, civil disturbances, earthquakes, and medical emergencies of all kinds. Local governments are able to utilize this diversity and experience through their contracts and agreements with the Department.


Alameda Fresno Merced San Diego Siskiyou
Alpine Humboldt Monterey
San Mateo Sonoma
Amador Lassen Napa
Santa Clara Tehama
Butte Madera Nevada
Santa Cruz Trinity
Calaveras Mariposa Placer
San Luis Obispo Tuolumne
El Dorado Mendocino Riverside Shasta


The following Cities have Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements can be for a wide variety of services depending upon a local government entities needs. CAL FIRE provides service to all the cities listed below. Service provided to cities within Riverside County is provided through cooperative agreements with Riverside County Fire. CAL FIRE provides service to Riverside County Fire through a cooperative agreement.

Atwater Dos Palos - MMU Lake Elsinore - RRU Palm Desert - RRU Soledad
Auburn Eastvale - RRU Livingston - MMU Paradise St. Helena
Banning - RRU Gridley
Madera Perris - RRU Temecula - RRU
Beaumont - RRU Gustine - MMU
Menifee - RRU Pismo Beach Ukiah
Biggs Highland
Moreno Valley - RRU
Rancho Mirage - RRU Wildomar - RRU
Calistoga Indian Wells - RRU
Morgan Hill
Red Bluff Willows
Coachella - RRU Indio - RRU Norco - RRU
Rubidoux - RRU Yucaipa
Desert Hot Springs - RRU  La Quinta - RRU
San Jacinto - RRU

Italicized Cities - Fire protection provided through a cooperative pass-through agreement

Fire Protection Districts

The following Fire Protection Districts have Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements can be for a wide variety of services depending upon a local government entities needs.

Aromas Tri County Deer Springs
South Lake County
Cachagua Elk Creek
Meeks Bay South Monterey County
Cloverdale Fresno County North Sonoma Coast South Santa Clara County
Coatside Hamilton City North Tahoe
Contra Costa County Higgins
Olympic Valley
Cypress Kanawha Pajaro Valley


County Service Areas

The following County Service Areas (CSA) have Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements can be for a wide variety of services depending upon a local government entities needs. 

Fresno/Shaver Lake #31
Pajaro Dunes #1
San Mateo #1


Community Service Districts

The following Community Service Districts have Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements can be for a wide variety of services depending upon a local government entities needs.

Cameron Park Newberry Springs
Dagget North Bay Fire
Groveland Pebble Beach
Loma Rica/Browns Valley Yermo
Morongo Valley  

Water Districts

The following Water Districts have Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. Cooperative Fire Protection Agreements can be for a wide variety of services depending upon a local government entities needs.

Arrowbear County Water District Metropolitan Water District
Butte County-Enhanced Hazard Abatement Nevada County Fire Planner


Firenet Lassen Sierra-Sac Valley EMS
Northstar Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital
Shasta-Tehama-Trinity Joint College District

Wildland Fire Agreements

The following Cities have Wildland Fire Protection Agreements with CAL FIRE. These agreements augment existing city fire department resources specifically for wildland fire fighting services.

Anaheim Lake Elsinore Shasta Lake
Beaumont Lincoln
Calimesa Loma Linda
Chino Valley Independent Murrieta
Colton Rancho Cucamonga
Highland Redlands
Jurupa Valley


The largest of CAL FIRE's cooperative programs involves an agreement for the exchange of fire protection services with the five federal wildland fire agencies, which includes the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), National Parks Service (NPS) Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), and United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). The purpose of the CFMA is to improve efficiency by having access to federal personnel, equipment, supplies, services, information throughout the United States to help in times of disaster, when Department resources are depleted. In turn, CAL FIRE provides assistance, through interstate compact agreements to the federal and other state wildfire agencies throughout the nation. This agreements focus is on wildland fires, but if an all-hazard emergency or disaster is Presidentially‚ÄźDeclared the CFMA is an avenue to utilize our federal cooperators.  Additionally, having the closest agency respond to a wildfire, regardless of jurisdiction better service the citizens of California and the CAL FIRE mission.

The CAL FIRE Crew Program operates in conjunction with the California Conservation Corps (CCC) and the California National Guard (CNG) to staff Fire Crews in accordance with their respective master interagency agreements. CAL FIRE is currently authorized to operate 30 CAL FIRE Firefighter Crews, 26 CCC Fire Crews, 4 Parolee Fire Crews and 14 CMD Fire Crews, providing a total of 1,956 firefighters statewide. These crews are available to respond to all types of emergencies including wildfires, floods, search and rescue, and earthquakes. When not responding to emergencies, the crews engage in hazardous fuels reduction and prescribed fire project work to protect the community and resources of California.