Chris Caskey, The Union Democrat

The Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday voted unanimously to send a letter to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Forest Service's parent agency, demanding more information and an independent investigation into the Rim Fire.

The letter says the board isn't satisfied with a number of explanations from the Forest Service, including its genesis from an unnamed hunter's illegal campfire in mid-August.

Board members say they also want more information that examines how the Forest Service responded the first few days when the fire was burning deep in the Tuolumne River watershed.

The fire burned more than a quarter-million acres, destroyed dozens of buildings and threatened multiple communities in Tuolumne County. It also had a major impact on the county's tourism industry, closing Highway 120 into Yosemite National Park and choking off most of county's most popular vacation spots with smoke around Labor Day.

For the full story see today's Union Democrat.

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