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News Archive

June 9, 2023

Marshall Fire Recovery Newsletter – June 9, 2023

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Boulder County Marshall Fire Recovery Newsletter

Boulder County Sheriff's Office concludes the investigation into the cause and origin of the Marshall Fire

Boulder County Sheriff Curtis Johnson

The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office has concluded the investigation into the cause and origin of the Marshall Fire. During the last 18 months, the Sheriff’s Office focused on three possible causes of the December 30, 2021, Marshall Fire: a fire start located at 5325 Eldorado Springs Drive, arcing Xcel Energy powerlines, and underground coal mine seams.

Burn patterns, video footage, and satellite imagery show that the Marshall Fire was comprised of two fires that eventually merged becoming the Marshall Fire. Investigators worked to determine where the two original fires originated from. It was determined that one fire started on a residential property located at 5325 Eldorado Springs Drive where a legal burn had occurred the previous week and had been covered with dirt but had been re-ignited due to the high winds on December 30. The second fire was started by arcing powerlines located just south of the Marshall Mesa Trailhead, located southeast of the intersection of Highway 93 and Eldorado Springs Drive. Investigators found no evidence that elevated underground fire activity in the coal seams produced surface temperatures capable of starting a fire, although that cannot be completely ruled out. Read more.


Additional emotional support available

hands holding each other

As information about the cause of the Marshall Fire is released, this may trigger many deep emotions and have a significant impact on your emotional well-being. Although we have all been anticipating this report for some time, it is important to be aware of how you are feeling and to make sure your emotions do not become overwhelming. Many mental/emotional health partners have provided services throughout the recovery process. Today, and in the coming days and weeks, many mental/emotional health partners are providing in-person events in our community. You can find the full details on the county’s website.

If you feel that you need additional support, professional assistance continues to be available:

Mental Health Partners – To access counseling services and crisis support, you can call 303-545-0852 or email communityoutreach@mhpcolorado.org. View a list of additional community resources.

Jewish Family Service and Community Foundation – Boulder County Jewish Family Service and Community Foundation Boulder County offer Boulder County Crisis Counseling to residents. The program offers 10 free individual or family counseling sessions and provides a pool of more than 250 licensed providers from which to choose. Get additional details about the program.

Additionally, there are many things you can do to protect the emotional well-being of yourself and others.

The cause of the fire may provide closure for some, while more anguish for others. Let’s continue to offer support to one another and come together as a community to heal.


A statement from the Boulder County Commissioners

Boulder County logo

Yesterday, the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office and Boulder County District Attorney’s Office shared the outcome of their 17-month investigation into the cause of the Marshall Fire. The Sheriff’s Office and District Attorney worked in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service and many experts to determine how and where the fire started and whether criminal charges were warranted. After an extensive investigation, they determined the fire originated at two unrelated locations and that no criminal charges were warranted. The full details of the investigation and recordings of the press conference are available on the Sheriff’s Office website.

The Boulder County Commissioners are grateful to the detectives and many experts who worked diligently to determine the origin of this devastating fire and to Sheriff Curtis Johnson, DA Michael Dougherty, and former Sheriff Joe Pelle for their leadership. Our community has suffered deep trauma from the Marshall Fire, which will take many years to heal from, and we recognize that today’s announcement may very well not bring about the closure that many community members are looking for. We know that the community has many questions and we appreciate the Sheriff’s Office making the reports and evidence available on their website in the interest of openness and transparency.

In the face of this tragedy, our community came together to recover and rebuild. That process started before today’s announcement and that process continues after today. But we should each take a moment to reflect on our own mental health and how today’s announcement has affected us. Knowing the cause and origin of the fire may provide closure for some, while more anguish for others. Let’s continue to offer support to one another and heal together.


Legal services related resources

Boulder County Bar Association logo

Some residents may have questions concerning legal matters following this week’s Sheriff’s Office press conference closing the investigation of the Marshall Fire's origin. In some cases, residents have also expressed concerns about contacts from legal services entities. Please be aware that residents may choose to forward questions or concerns on such matters to the Boulder County Bar Association.


Tips for County Use Tax Rebate processing

houses being built

The county continues to work with the Impact Development Fund in processing use tax rebates for Marshall Fire homeowners who have been issued eligible rebuilding permits. To date, 188 rebates have been funded, totaling over $595,000 for community members. The backlog of original submissions has been substantially reduced. If you have submitted an application for the county’s use tax rebate program, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Requests for additional documentation or information may be required to process your application.
As approved, you will be asked to complete a form and identify whether you wish to receive the rebate via hard copy mailed check or ACH transaction.

Both requests are e-mailed from an address with the suffix cedp.org. You may need to check your spam folder or your email to ensure that requests have not been overlooked. Learn more about the Use Tax Rebate program.


Marshall ROC announces new Executive Director

Jeri Curry

The Board of Directors of Marshall ROC, the Marshall Fire Long Term Recovery Group, has named Jeri Curry to serve as the organization’s Executive Director. Marshall ROC works with its members and partners to help coordinate and deliver resources to the Marshall Fire and Windstorms survivor community.

Ms. Curry has served as a volunteer in the role of Marshall ROC Co-Chair since March 2022. As Executive Director, Curry will be responsible for communications, fundraising, donor relations, managing government and community partnerships, Marshall ROC program development, and working with Recovery Navigators to identify and help serve the needs of survivors. Read more.


Upcoming Meetings

Community Wildfire Protection Plan Public Engagement ForumSaturday, June 10 – 9-11:30 a.m.Superior Community Center, 1500 Coalton Rd.Learn more


Tool and Gardening EventSaturday, June 10 – 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Ascent Church, 550 McCaslin Blvd., LouisvilleEverything is FREE!! Collect home improvement and yard tools for your new homes (while supplies last). Choose a pots and some plants to brighten your home as well as information on first steps to rebuilding your backyard.


Teen Marshall Fire Memorial ProjectSaturday, June 17 – 6 p.m.Founders Park, SuperiorLearn more. Register.


EnergySmart Open Office Hours:Second and fourth Thursday of every month – Feb. 9 through June 299 a.m. to noon (no appointment necessary)Superior Community Center, 1500 Coalton RoadGet free advice on building efficiently – for homeowners, builders, code officials, trade partners


Technology SupportMarshall ROC, in partnership with ITDRC, provides technology support to help the community in applying for disaster related assistance programs. Scanners, printer and laptops are available to use Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Marshall Fire Recovery Center, 357 McCaslin Blvd., Suite 115-B, Louisville.

View all Meetings


Information/Resources

Mental Health Resources

Recovery Navigators

List of Builders

Rebates, Discounts, and Incentives

Boulder County Rebuilding Better

Sign up for the EnergySmart Newsletter

The latest information and resources are located on the Boulder County Marshall Fire Recovery website or contact Katie Arrington, Assistant Recovery Manager for Boulder County, karrington@bouldercounty.org