March 2006

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General Meeting
March 16, 2006
Those present: Ed Royce, Marcine Hughes, John Hughes, Lloyd Smith, Jennifer Mata, Chris
Ryan, Ruth Ellison, Jack Tomlinson, Jim Davis, Delores Walmer, Emily Diggles, Robert
Robinson, Richard Olson, Sharon Rooney, John Hayes, Kevin Chambers, Margie Clack,
Ken Stevens, Angela Yearwood, Scott Williams and Robin Wyatt-Little.
President Marcine Hughes convened the meeting at 8:32 A.M. Introductions were made.
Minutes for the January 2006 meeting were approved. Ed Royce – 1st. Jim Davis – 2nd.
Unanimous approval.
Treasurers’ Report: Sharon Rooney reports the Kennedy Meadows CWPP Grant Account balance is $11,225.00; Tehachapi FSC Grant Account balance is $4,752.45. The KRV FSA operating account balance is $1,225.60. Motion to accept: John Hughes – 1st. Rich Olson-
2nd. Unanimous approval.
Robin opened discussion regarding restructuring the FSC organization, citing the need to distribute responsibilities amongst many rather than a few. Applause to Marcine Hughes for her outstanding job as President (two terms) of the KRV FSC. It was agreed that FSC members would volunteer to chair committees for: Publicity (Margie Clack); Speakers Bureau (Robin
Wyatt-Little); Chipper Days (Margaret Belz); Special Projects (Ed Royce). A fundraising chair has yet to be named. Emily Diggles will assist Margie. Jim Davis will assist Ed Royce.
Delores Walmer and Emily will work with Robin.
Discussion followed concerning fundraising and what that would entail. To be refined.
Chair people will also chair the general meetings on a rotating basis. April 20th – Ed Royce.
May 18th – Jim Davis. June 15th – Rich Olson. July 20 – Ken Stevens.
GRANTS: Rich Olson.
Kennedy Meadows received one RFP response (four sent out) for the CWPP Grant. Ken Delfino will be the consultant. The proposal will be reviewed by Rich Olson, Ed Royce and Matt Pontes to work out details prior to project beginning.
Hungry Gulch fuels reduction project progressing with license-to-enter letters being sent out soon; KCFD working on the archaeological studies; BLM has cleared the biological and botanical requirements for the ESA (Endangered Species Act) according to Jennifer Mata.
Rich, Matt, Ken and John Smith will walk the project area to determine final perimeter. Road brushing and fuels removal of private property perimeters. Completion of this project will provide a fuel break from the west end of Wagy Flat down to the Lake.
Ken Stevens anticipates the fuels crew will begin March 20th for their two week training. The actual project will probably begin in May once all the T’s are crossed and I’s are dotted.
Rich reports that the KRV FSC will act as fiscal agents for Mt. Pinos, administrating their CWPP grant project and their Fuels Project.
Sequoia Crest CWPP grant application ranked very high for consideration.
The Bodfish Canyon Road fuel break grant application is receiving top priority locally. This project is titled “Bodfish Canyon Road Evacuation Improvement Plan.”  This project would entail road brushing 100’ on each side of the canyon road. A component of this project is to educate property owners about their responsibility to create adequate defensible space so they
would be able to “stay put” in the event of a wildfire and not try to travel on the only exit road. It was agreed that a FSC presentation should be scheduled with the Lake Isabella-Bodfish POA.
Tillie Creek fuel break grant application is pending. Rodgers Road fuel break extension grant application is pending. KRV CWPP amendment/update grant application is pending. Erskine Creek fuel break grant application is pending. Grant awards will be announced March 17th.
It was agreed that FSC presentations should be made to these local POA’s/Neighborhoods in conjunction with the corresponding grant projects. Robin will begin scheduling.
FOREST SERVICE: Scott Williams and Angie Yearwood.
Scott gave an update of the recent Forest Service budget cuts and how they affect local wildfire preparedness and fuel project completions. Robin read the FSC letter to Congressman Thomas and Senators Feinstein and Boxer, expressing concern for public safety and requesting reinstatement to previous funding levels for both the Forest Service and BLM. Ed Royce also sent letters from the Kennedy Meadows area.
Scott reported on local fuels projects which should begin in the near future. Alta Sierra-Phase 1
is just about completed. Scott tells us that next month Cindy Thill will report on the arson prevention project and the Wildfire Safety Road Signs.   It was agreed that the FSC should incorporate arson awareness in their educational presentations plus develop radio public service announcements. Scott mentioned that the larger percentage of arson fires are not solved.
Angie tells us the recent Bakersfield Home and Garden Show proved to be beneficial for the Forest Service booth with good traffic and exchange of information with the public. There will be another in the Fall at which time the FSC will participate. Angie worked with White Forest Nursery, getting fire resistant plants for the booth.
Marcine has been coordinating with Bakersfield nursery owners to present fire resistant landscaping ideas on their early morning TV spots.
BLM: Ruth Ellison and Kevin Chambers
Ruth reports that the HDFPA (High Desert Fire Prevention Association) has begun work for this year’s fire prevention poster contest. The theme for 2006 is “Fire Safety Begins With Me.”
Entry forms are being printed for Tehachapi (2200), Mt. Pinos (3600) and KRV (3600). First place winners will receive $75.00, second place winners receive $50.00 and third place winners will receive a Smokey Bear back pack. Judging will follow the April 19th deadline for entries.
There is a possibility that State Farm Insurance will finance a calendar project
with the winning posters. Ruth announced the new BLM State Fire Mitigation & Education Specialist Jane Arteaga.
Kevin Chambers also gave an overview of BLM budget cuts explaining what fire resource equipment would be removed from service until budget constraints improved. He also reiterated that grant funding is less plentiful and also that there are more Fire Safe Councils competing for the same funds. Kevin outlined proposed 2007 fuels projects which will be submitted in April 2006 for approval. Areas targeted are Sawmill/Isabella Highlands; Hungry Gulch; Wagy Flats; Erskine Creek and Tillie Creek. Chris Ryan reports that there has been a delay in contract negotiations with Los Angeles County for the brush crusher equipment for the Pala Ranches fuels project. The funds will be set aside until such time the equipment is available, hopefully in the Fall. Kevin would like to expand project goals into the Walker Basin area. Agreed that a FSC presentation is needed in this area. Robin will work on that.
Kevin will coordinate with Ed Royce and others from the Kennedy Meadows area regarding future projects.
Ken reports that Crew 87 will begin training next week with the Rio Bravo and Crew 7 starting up in May. Ken reports that the Kern County FSC is updating the newspaper insert with input from the San Luis Obispo FSC. State Farm Insurance is funding this effort. WILDFIRE AWARENESS WEEK WILL BE MAY 7th – 13th.
Ken handed out copies of the State Defensible Space Guidelines. These cover the 0-30’ defensible space and the 30’-100’ fuel break area. These will be issued to the Hazardous Fuels Reduction Providers at this year’s workshop. Ken also will have the new locally produced DVD about defensible space available for presentations.
Ken reports that the requested funding for new fuel crews trucks was granted by the KC Board of Supervisors. A letter of appreciation will be sent to Supervisor McQuiston.
Emily Diggles commented that the Myers Canyon roads are in poor condition and efforts are proceeding to remedy this. She would like a FSC presentation and chipper day scheduled.
Jim Davis thanked the KCFD for the map. Jim reports that Isabella Highlands are fundraising in order to purchase 22 county-standard street signs ($175.00 each.)
Ed Royce reports that Kennedy Meadows have six emergency telephones installed on Kennedy Meadows road which the Ducor telephone company will operate at no cost. Ed also reports that his community has established a ten-telephone first aid broadcast system. When one telephone rings, all ten ring, assuring contact with someone for assistance.
Bob Robinson mentioned that the Mojave RC&D is hosting a plant sale and water efficiency
workshop on April 22nd and May 6th. Marcine will send Bob pertinent fire safe plant lists for the workshop.
Lloyd Smith  from Walker Pass expressed concern for the increased traffic in his area and the potential for wildfire occurrences when one sees the amount of trash thrown out car windows.
Ken Stevens suggested the KRV FSC might want to consider purchasing a DVD/speaker setup
for FSC presentations. The FSC currently uses the laptop and the sound quality is less than
ideal. John and Marcine Hughes generously offered to buy a DVD, speakers and cables ($257.00) for the FSC. Loud appreciation was displayed for this donation.
Respectfully submitted by: Robin Wyatt-Little, Secretary

Kern River Valley Fire Safe Council ● PO Box 633, Kernville, CA 93238

General information: Lloyd Smith ● (760) 377-3542 or Robin Little ● (760) 376-6842

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