January 2009

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Board of Directors and Stakeholders Meetings

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Board of Directors Meeting

Those present: Lloyd Smith, Ed Royce, Christine and Gordon Hancock, Patrick Pontes, Barbara Likens, Bob Robinson, Debbie Santiago, Jim Davis, Sean Collins, Derek Davis, Robin Wyatt-Little.

President Lloyd Smith convened the meeting at 8:30 AM. 

Introductions were made: Derek Davis, KCFD Prescribed Fuels Manager and Sean Collins, KCFD Public Information Officer.

Debbie Santiago requested an agenda change due to time constraints so she could present an idea for Wildfire Awareness Week education. Agenda change granted.

Debbie suggested a 1-2 day “Home Ignitability – Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition Zone” course for Kern County Fire Safe Council participants. The presenter would be Pat Durland from Boise, Idaho who is associated with the Firewise 
Association. The course would be scheduled one day and on the second day perhaps a field trip to locales to assess the points covered in the course. 

Discussion followed regarding cost, location, other attendees and date of event. Debbie suggested the weekend (May 1st & 2nd) before Wildfire Awareness Week.
The consensus was to proceed with plans. Debbie and Derek will research points discussed for the February meeting.

BLM: Debbie reports that as of today there is a new BLM Midway Fire Station in Taft. She also reports that all 6 CWPP binders are completed and ready for distribution to the KRV Libraries and the Mobile Library. Debbie will be reviewing grant applications in preparation for Clearing House decisions in April.

MINUTES: Reviewed. Moved to accept – Ed Royce. Second – Christine Hancock.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Christine reports an operating account balance of $3398.34.
Bodfish Grant account balance - $17,914.00. State Farm Grant balance - $592.88.
Christine’s 2009 budget is approved and is on file.

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGES: Lloyd reiterated the importance/need to use the KRV FSC mission/vision approved statement. No deviations/abbreviations PLEASE. Lloyd again requested efforts to bring in new Board Members which will distribute FSC responsibilities amongst a greater number, reducing the load on a few. Lloyd sent a letter to the KC Planning Department in support of the Lodge at Painted Rock’s conditional use permit request.

GRANTS: Bodfish Canyon Phase 1 is completed. Final report to be submitted with photo monitoring.
2009 Grant Proposals Status Reports:

Pala Shaded Fuelbreak: Patrick has received the State’s Contract Letter, signed it and returned to the State on 11/29/08. We are in the environmental compliance process and waiting for BLM to advise us on the project. The 1st Quarter Progress Report is due 1/31/09. Hopefully, BLM will have sufficient funding for the project.

Bodfish Canyon Phase 11: Patrick received the State’s Contract Letter, signed it and returned to the State on 12/29/08. We are in the environmental compliance process, the same as with Pala. Hopefully, BLM will have sufficient funding for the project.

Piute Meadows Community Roadside Brushing/Chipping Project: Patrick received the State’s Contract Letter for the project, signed it and returned to the State on 10/21/08. The project has been cleared for environmental clearance, so once the License-To-Enter Agreements are in place we can begin the project. BLM has released the funds for this project so we should receive the funding at any time.
We will follow the “avoidance” measures of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.
The State initiated the 1st Quarter Reporting for this project and it was completed on 1/8/09.

ASV Machine Purchase Proposal: We will resubmit the application in February 2009 following the new SNC Application procedures. The project will be written as a county-wide project with an emphasis on new construction and maintenance. Patrick is working on quotes for the ASV and trailer.

For the 2010 Grant Projects the FSC will need to determine what amount of “Match” they want to contribute to the projects.

Patrick attended the 2010 Grant Writing Workshop in Santa Barbara and Ed Royce attended the same Workshop in Bishop. Key changes for this next Grant Cycle are:
· Tentatively, BLM has $250k and USFS has $23MM to distribute. BLM’s share should increase.
· Proposal Support Letters (i.e. letters from Kern Fire Chief) need to be submitted to local FSC’s and they will be forwarded under cover a letter from the FSC to CFSC.
· Match dollars will be figured the same among all agencies – a 90/10% ratio. Good news!
· Won’t project quarterly dollars as a need. Requests will be verbal as each project is unique.
· Proposals are due along with Support Letters on 2/20/09. No late proposals accepted.
· Commitment letters are needed to unlock federal dollars!!!
· Costs must be broken down and identified – cost/ac comparisons will be made by agency representatives evaluating the projects.
· Four (4) agencies will review each project – any of the 4 (BLM, FS, NPS, USF&WL) may fund a project.
· FS Grants for 2010 will be for a two year term.
· Don’t spend money you don’t have. An audit issue and it could take 6 months to get the money.
· Will be able to add travel costs to Grant Proposals.
· Projects will be scored by the number approved in the county. They want to spread the wealth.
· Projects not funded will stay in Clearinghouse pending future funding, for two years.
· The sooner we receive Environmental Compliance clearance the sooner the project gets funded.
A work binder titled “Getting Your Story Told” was provided to attendees of the Grant Writing Workshop. 

FUNDRAISING: Recent donations: 
The Lodge at Painted Rock - $600.0 
Total contributions of $4,742.50 for 2008 compared to $4,852.98 for 2007. A 2008 Honor Roll list has been sent to Ed Royce for the FSC website.

Reminder letters will be sent to last year’s contributors (sustaining members) during February 2009.

CHIPPER DAYS: The Board of Directors agreed to providing chipper days as a
Community service, regardless of the number of participants, to residences, businesses and other groups so long as the work is done for fuel reduction and creation of defensible space and the event is coordinated to make a reasonable days work for the KCFD crew. 

A chipper day is scheduled for the Kernville Chamber of Commerce Rodeo Grounds Site for January 20. The work will be done by the KCFD Crew 7 – Station 72, Supervised by Jim Rocha. A thank you to Derek Davis for his help coordinating this event. NOTE: This project was completed on January 16th ahead of schedule. 

Greenhorn Mountain POA has requested another annual chipper day, tentatively scheduled for June 6, 2009. 

SPEAKER’S BUREAU: Robin reports a scheduled program for the Lake Isabella/Bodfish POA on February 10th, 6PM at the Lake Isabella Veteran’s Hall.
It was agreed that Derek Davis et al will give an update on the Bodfish Canyon Brushing Project Phase 1 and upcoming Phase 11.

Robin requested Board approval to purchase a table top display board to use for FSC informational materials during FSC events. The cost of the Board is $96.23.
So moved by Gordon Hancock. Second by Christine Hancock. Unanimous approval.

Robin has reserved a table for the FSC for the Living Green Expo, March 27-30.
Cost for non-profits is $20.00. Unanimous approval by the Board. So moved. 

PUBLICITY: During the 2008 holiday season the Kern Valley Sun asked the KRV FSC if we wanted to have an “ad” in the 2009 Kern River Valley Official Tourist Guide. Via email communication the Board agreed to a full page ad, in color, citing fire safe tips for camping and homes. General information about the FSC and contact information was included. The Guide will be distributed throughout the Valley by January 30th. Total cost is $725.00, most of which will be paid by the State Farm Educational Grant account balance of $592.88. 

WEBSITE: Ed Royce reports that the Collaborative Meeting information will be included on the website, current and future projects.

EDUCATION: Lloyd reports that the Walker Basin sign has been installed and the message boards are now on the correct rotation plan thanks to Scott and the USFS. THANK YOU SCOTT.

Mary Beth Garrison has requested all KC FSC’s review 2008 Living With Wildfire and submit new ideas and suggestions.

OLD BUSINESS: Lloyd has researched a CPA to do the FSC audit. He also contacted an accountant in Ridgecrest who has done non-profits and is willing to do ours. Christine took an action to identify an independent, local accountant who she could work with on an audit that would encompass the entire time since the FSC became a 501c3. 

Lloyd has ordered the Appreciation Plaques for the USFS and BLM. Ed will arrange for the appropriate personnel to be present for the presentation. It was agreed that these presentations will be scheduled March 19th and April 16th at the FSC meetings. Cost for the plaques is $35.00 Moved – Ed Royce, Second – Robin Wyatt-Little. Unanimous approval. Robin will contact the newspapers for publicity.

Chipper Day data (digitally) to Ed Royce for website – Tom DONE 
Paramount Giving Company Letter to Christine – Lloyd DONE 
2008 Honor Roll to Ed for website – Lloyd DONE 

Reminder letters to sustaining members – Lloyd 
Research Home Ignition Zone workshop – Debbie, Derek 
Ideas to Mary Beth Garrison (Living w/ Wildfire – ALL 
Order display board – ROBIN DONE 
Secure local accountant to do FSC audit - Christine 
Include Collaborative info on website – Ed 
Secure personnel for Appreciation Plaque presentation dates – Ed 
Arrange publicity for Appreciation Plaque presentation dates – Robin 
Meeting adjourned at 9:35 AM.

Stakeholders Meeting
Thursday, January 15, 2009

Additional Attendees: Bob Lechtreck, Gordon Ehmann, Lonnie Blank, Pete Shanley, Richard Grove, Scott Williams.
Meeting convened at 9:45 by President Lloyd Smith.
The agenda was adopted.

Lloyd reiterated the importance/need to use the KRV FSC approved mission/vision statement (“The Kern River Valley Fire Safe Council is a 501c3 non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to providing the means to minimize wildfire risks for residents and tourists in the Kern River Valley.”) No deviations please.

Lloyd reviewed the new Chipper Day policy as agreed upon by the Board, providing chipper days as a community service, regardless of the number of participants, to residences, businesses and other groups so long as the work is done for fuel reduction and creation of defensible space, and the event is coordinated to make a reasonable days work for the KCFD crew.

Lloyd requested recruitment of additional Board Members to assist with FSC responsibilities.

Lloyd ordered “Protecting Communities and Saving Forests.” These booklets have arrived but Robin forgot to bring them to the meeting. 

Feb. 10 Lake Isabella/Bodfish POA – Speaker’s Program
April 29 – May 5 KRV Spring Nature Festival
May 4-10 Wildfire Awareness Week
May 24 Greenhorn POA Memorial Day Picnic-Greenhorn Park Program
June 6 Greenhorn Mt. POA chipper day.

Barbara Likens/Board Member, POB 531, Wofford Heights, 376-4333
Derrick Davis/KCFD, 661-330-0358,
Sean Collins/KCFD, 661-330-0133, 
Pete Shanley, /Isabella Highlands POA, 379-2811
Jim Davis, “ “ “ , 379-2844, 


GRANTS: Please refer to written grant report in the preceding Board Minutes.

FUNDRAISING: Lloyd reports that 2008 was a good year ($4742.50) , only slightly less than 2007 ($4852.98.) Sustaining members letters will be sent in February 2009.

CHIPPER DAYS: A chipper day has been scheduled for the Kernville Chamber of Commerce at the Rodeo Grounds on January 20. NOTE: This project was completed on January 16th.

Lloyd reports the KRVFSC Chipper Day Program was highlighted in the San Joaquin Valley Unified Pollution Control District draft feasibility study on prescribed burns, dated December 31, 2008.

Normally chipper days are scheduled from April through June. The KRV FSC will attempt to accommodate chipper requests outside this time period (especially in the Fall months) on a case by case basis however, chipper days are dependent on seasonal crews.

The KRV FSC will attempt to accommodate chipper requests before the normal April/May property clearance deadline, on a case by case basis.

SPEAKERS BUREAU: New entries - Robin reports a FSC Speaker’s Program for the Lake Isabella/Bodfish POA on February 10. Derrick Davis/KCFD will give an update on Bodfish Canyon Phase 1 and 11.

The FSC has reserved a table for the Living Green Expo, March 27-30.

Greenhorn Mountain POA has requested the power point program on Greenhorn Mt. Restoration Project for May 24th. TIME TBA. Lloyd has arranged for Matt to give this same program to KRVR on May 6th.

All are encouraged to attend the Wildfire Awareness Week proclamation event at the Kern County Board of Supervisors, Tuesday, May 5th.

PUBLICITY: The KRV FSC Board agreed to a full page, color ad in the 2009 Kern River Valley Visitor/Tourist Guide. This will be distributed throughout the Valley on January 30th.

EDUCATION: The roadside sign in Walker Basin is back up in its new location thanks to Scott and USFS crew. We now have 9 signs for rotation and will work toward a goal of twelve signs in the future.

ELECTION OF BOARD OF DIRECTORS: President Lloyd Smith asked for nominations from the floor. Barbara Likens has volunteered to serve and her nomination was unanimous. The 2008 Board of Directors has agreed to serve for another year: Lloyd Smith; Ed Royce; Christine Hancock; Gordon Hancock; Tom Parkin and Robin Wyatt-Little. There being no further nominations the vote was unanimous for the 2009 Board of Directors listed above.

ELECTION OF OFFICERS OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS: President Lloyd Smith asked for nominations from the floor. There being none, the 2008 Officers have agreed to serve for 2009. The officers are: Lloyd Smith – President; Ed Royce – Vice President; Christine Hancock – Treasurer and Robin Wyatt-Little – Secretary.

KCFD: Bob Lechtreck reports there will be a slight delay(1-2 weeks) getting the crews on line. Bob introduced Derrick Davis, Fuels Manager, replacing Mark Kingsbury who has recently retired. Bob introduced Sean Collins, Public Information Officer.

Jim Davis of Isabella Highlands reports he sent a letter of appreciation to Supervisor McQuiston, thanking the KCFD Fuels Crew and their fuels reduction work in the Isabella Highlands area. Jim received a note back indicating the Supervisor’s support of KCFD and its’ fuel reduction efforts. Jim also received a telephone call from Chief Thompson. A COMPLETE CIRCLE OF APPRECIATION!
Good job Jim.

Mary Beth Garrison (KCFD) is reviewing last year’s “Living With Wildfire” newspaper insert and is asking for input from all interested FSC participants regarding the 2009 issue. Lloyd asks all to look at last year’s insert and submit comments by March 9th FSC meeting.

There was discussion regarding the insert being placed in both local newspapers and the possibility of placing the insert separately from the other colored sales inserts to insure Living with Wildfire won’t be tossed out. Robin will research this.

FOREST SERVICE: Scott Williams has offered assistance to our FSC when we are ready to “rework” our information brochure. Scott and the FS crew has been repairing and strengthening the road signs. Scott, Derrick and Patrick will scope the Burma Road Extension project. Scott reports the FS Website has a local hazard reduction project listed as one of it’s’ success stories. The FS is busy with the planning/scoping stage of the Piute Restoration Project.

BLM: Lloyd, reporting for Debbie Santiago tells us that BLM is opening their midway Fire Station in Taft today. Debbie and Derrick Davis will research the feasibility of her proposal for a Wildfire Awareness Week event involving a Home Ignition Zone Assessment class. Pat Durland from Boise, Idaho would teach the
Course. Debbie and Derrick will look at possible funding sources, locales etc.

RC&D: Bob Robinson reports funding difficulties due to Federal and State budget deficits. Recent grant projects have been deferred or suspended. Sierra Nevada Conservancy funding is frozen. Bob tells us that Dena Taylor, Project Coordinator has replaced Carolyn LoFreso who has moved to a different position within RC&D. 


Isabella Highlands: Jim Davis introduced Pete Shanley newly elected president of Isabella Highlands POA. They have been busy with firebreak work and overhanging trees along Sawmill Road. They may schedule another chipper day later in the year.

Pala Ranches: Lonnie Blank reports that hazard trees are being removed on private property. Lonnie, after sending letters with accompanying photos of hazardous fuel
examples, has received positive response from Pala Ranches residents. Lonnie hopes to schedule a May 9th Chipper Day. Will confirm. 

Squirrel Valley: Gordon Ehmann is hopeful there will be a May chipper day. Date to be announced.

Piute Meadows: Richard Grove tells us that license-to-enter/project explanation letters have been sent to residents. Door-to-door canvassing is also taking place. 

Richard has suggested their annual April meeting would be an excellent time to have a FSC program. Robin and Richard will confirm the date.

Kennedy Meadows: Ed reports lots of snow and advises people to be prepared if traveling to Kennedy Meadows. 

Lake Isabella/Bodfish POA: Gordon Hancock spoke of hazardous trees near utility poles and inquired as to who is responsible for clearing around the poles on private property. It was suggested the property owners should contact SCE.

Walker Pass Neighborhood: Lloyd reports a chipper day will be scheduled. Cal Trans has done appreciable work on the road sides.

OLD TOPICS: Lloyd will see what progress has been made for Chipper Day Request Forms being placed in KCFD Stations.

Evaluate Red Zone Software – Debbie 
Distribute KRVFSC CWPP binders to Libraries – Debbie 
Chipper Day Request Form progress – Lloyd 
Walker Pass Chipper Day date – Lloyd 
Pala Ranches Chipper Day date – Lonnie 
Squirrel Valley Chipper Day date – Gordon 
Isabella Highlands Chipper Day date – Pete & Jim 
Schedule Piute Meadows April Meeting date – Richard & Robin 

Meeting adjourned at 11:30 AM.

Next KRV FSC meeting will be February 19, 2009 at Supervisor McQuistons’ Conference Room, 7050 Lake Isabella Blvd., California. Board meeting begins at 8:30 AM. General meeting begins at 9:30 AM. 

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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