The big plane was a big cut from the state budget. Cal Fire Spokesman Daniel Berlant with Cal Fire says they enjoyed the volume of service the tanker provided during the last four years.
BERLANT: "The DC 10 air tanker can hold about 12,000 gallons of fire retardant. Our air tankers hold about 1200. The federal air tankers hold about 3,000."
But, the $7 million per year price tag to have exclusive rights to the privately-owned plane was too much for Cal Fire's budget . If the plane is not being used by another state, California can still rent it for around 50 thousand dollars a day.
Cal Fire is also shutting down the base (in Victorville) where the plane was kept. That's a savings of an additional $1 million per year. Defensible space and staffing budgets were also cut.