June 2007

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Board of Directors and General Meeting
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Those present: Ed Royce, Gordon and Christine Hancock, Patrick Pontes, Ken Stevens, Sue Rocha, Cindy Thill, Emily Diggles, Margaret Belz, Art Allington, Doug Johnston and Robin Wyatt-Little.
President Ed Royce convened the meeting at 8:30 AM. Introductions were made.
Minutes: A correction was made to the May 17, 2007 minutes: $50.00 was paid to the California Attorney General for renewal of our charitable organization status. Motion to approve: Christine Hancock. 2nd: Gordon Hancock. Unanimous approval.
Treasurer’s Report: Christine reports a FSC operating account balance of $4773.24. Grant balances are: Sequoia Crest - $5000.00 and State Farm - $5000.00. Kennedy Meadows, Frazier Park and Mt. Pinos grants are closed out. Income received: $13.00 for the FSC Donation Can from Squirrel Valley and $250.00 from Thomas Refuse. Christine just received an invoice from Castle Printing for the newspaper inserts which will be paid ($3351.22.) Motion to approve: Robin Wyatt-Little. 2nd – Emily Diggles.
Grant Reports: Patrick Pontes
Patrick reports that the California FSC is correcting glitches in their 2008 Concept Paper reporting forms. Environmental Compliance Clearance Letters from BLM for Kennedy Meadows and Bodfish projects should be arriving soon.
The State is trying to get the 2008 dollars flowing sooner than having to wait for the beginning of fiscal year. BLM grants are funded out of next year’s dollars which means they can commit the funds sooner.
Patrick mentioned the required Migratory Bird Act Treaty compliance process affecting our grants as well as Tehachapi FSC grant(s). Gordon and Christine Hancock suggested that perhaps Bob Barnes of the Audubon Association might be of assistance in this area.
Fundraising: Ed Royce per written report from Lloyd Smith
Our Kern Community Foundation grant request for $1500 for production of educational material was denied. No new information regarding the SCE grant application for the road sign project. Lloyd will be developing some new grant applications this summer and is optimistic. In the meantime, the FSC is depending on Sustaining Memberships.
It was agreed to send a thank you letter to State Farm Insurance for their funding of the Wildfire Awareness Newspaper Inserts. Robin will do this.
The KRV FSC received an email from Paramount Farming Company regarding our Federal ID number in reference for a donation from an employee. Ed provided the number.
The Kern Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Kernville Chamber of Commerce have responded favorably to our request for membership lists. The Kern Valley CC charges $25.00 for the list. Motion to pay this fee: Robin Wyatt-Little. 2nd – Gordon Hancock. Unanimous approval. The lists will be turned over to Lloyd Smith.
Road Sign Project: Lloyd Smith and Cindy Thill
Four road signs are being prepared (BBQ Coals, Ashtray, Wildfire Strikes and Summer Campfires.) All signs will be done with a white background. Colors of red, yellow and orange have been minimized. The KRVFSC Logo has been prepared as a vector graphic for use on the signs and for a Sustaining Member window display. The targeted completion date is now June 30th. We will reconcile payment when we receive the billing. If KCFD cannot provide funding we will take it out of the operating budget and concentrate on fund-raising activities. Lloyd is optimistic.
Cindy reports some glitches from the State regarding the signs and their placement. Cindy will continue communications both by letter and telephone with appropriate people to iron out the wrinkles. A round of applause for Cindy’s time and efforts on this worthwhile project.
Speaker’s Bureau: Robin Wyatt-Little
Ken Stevens and Robin presented a FSC program to the Lake Isabella-Bodfish Property Owners Assn. on June 12th. There were 27 in attendance. Ken brought maps of the recent Bodfish Canyon fire and of the proposed Bodfish Canyon Fuels Reduction Grant Project. Two more programs are scheduled for the Frontier Trail POA on June 23rd in Kernville and the Century 21 Realtors on June 25th. Captain Dennis Monahan of the KCFD and Robin will present the programs.
Publicity: Ed Royce et al
The Kern Valley Sun published a photo of Sharon Rooney receiving our FSC Appreciation Plaque from Lloyd Smith, with Christine Hancock, Bob Robinson and Robin Wyatt-Little in attendance.
Chipper Days: Margaret Belz
Chipper Day Events took place at Alta Sierra on June 2nd; Myers Canyon on June 9th and Pala Ranches on May 19th. A thank you email was received from Pala Ranches expressing appreciation to the FSC and to Randy Griffin and the crew for their hard work and professionalism. They have asked to be put on the May 2008 calendar for another chipper day.
Kern County FSC: Ken Stevens
The next meeting will be Wednesday, June 27th at 1:30 PM, 5642 Victor Street, Bakersfield. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
New Business:
Art Allington, retired fireman, expressed his concerns with current building codes not keeping pace with the increased risk of wildfire potential in Kern County and elsewhere. Art is currently trying to reconcile past hazard severity zone(s) maps to a more precise depiction and to raise building code standards reflecting these maps.
Ken Stevens and Assistant Fire Marshal/Captain Doug Johnston of the Kern County Fire Department have been involved in a Statewide effort to review and upgrade all California Fire Hazard Severity Zones. All 56 California County Fire Agencies are involved. The State has prepared new draft maps and Kern County personnel have identified 3000 additional needed changes to these maps. All of these changes will affect building codes effective January 2008. California Department of Forestry (CDF) Director is coordinating this effort. Severity classifications are based on many factors but fuel, slope and weather history plus fire brands classification play a key role in the severity ratings. More information can be seen on the CDF website There will be a public meeting July 18th, 1-4 in the Supervisor’s Chambers, Bakersfield.
Ed Royce suggests a letter to the local newspapers regarding this information and encouraging attendance at this meeting.  Ed will write this letter.
Agency and Property Owners Associations:
Kern County Fire Department:
Ken Stevens reports that their fuels crew cleaned a one mile drainage ditch behind houses and mobile homes in Mt. Mesa. The arrangement was that this project was done at no cost to the property owners this year but they must maintain this cleared area or the county will charge them for future fuels removal. Fuels Crew 87 completed this project with the help of the chipper.
Ken Stevens received a letter of commendation for the Kern River Valley Fire Safe Council from the California Department of Forestry Fire Chief Dennis Thompson and CDF Director Ruben Grijalva. The “Certificate of Appreciate” states: “ For your dedication to the citizens of your community and to the State of California through your fire prevention efforts making your neighborhoods a safer environment for the people who live there and for firefighters who may have to defend your homes during a wildfire.” It was agreed this certificate will be framed and displayed publicly. Location to be determined.
BLM: Sue Rocha
Sue reports BLM is experiencing numerous personnel changes which affects local efforts i.e. stations, engines and personnel.
Sue gave the speaker’s bureau several 100’ defensible space measuring tapes for the upcoming programs.
Forest Service: Cindy Thill
Cindy tells us that Rick Larsen, newly appointed District Ranger, will be “on board” in two weeks.Cindy also tells us there are currently 9 crews involved in the Goldlege Fire which is now 70% contained.
Myers Canyon: Emily Diggles
Emily reports that the chipper day event went well. Emily submitted her data records which were beautifully detailed along with photos. Ken Stevens will be the safe keeper of these records.
Lake Isabella-Bodfish: Christine and Gordon Hancock have once again volunteered to maintain a FSC booth at the September 17th Health Faire from 9 – 11 AM. Educational information will be provided to them.
Kennedy Meadows: Ed Royce tells us that their annual Membership Meeting on Memorial Day weekend was a great success with about 90 people attending. Several “dignitaries” attended: Tina Terrell, Sequoia Forest Supervisor as well as the Tulare County Supervisor, Mike Innes and the Tulare County Deputy Sheriff. Patrick Pontes and Ken Delfino attended along with BLM and Forest Service personnel.
The BLM provided a chipper and crew to assist Kennedy Meadow property owners with reducing their hazardous fuel load(s). A thank you was received from Max and Eleanor Hovaten, praising the BLM crew and Ed Royce for organizing this effort.
Frontier Trails POA:
Robin reports that clearing efforts can be seen throughout this area. The FSC will present a program this coming Saturday. Frontier Trail POA is a sustaining supporter of the KRV FSC.
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

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