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Willow Creek Fire Safe Council
Meeting  Minutes

Willow Creek Fire Safe Council

Regular Meeting of Board of Directors

October 1, 2009


Call to Order: President Joe O’Hara called the meeting to order at 7:45 p.m. at the ranch room behind the USFS Lower Trinity Ranger Station, following the annual membership meeting at which three directors were elected to serve two year terms ending in 2011.

Attendance: Quorum present

Board members present: Joe O’Hara, Barbara Darst, John Johnston, Susan Abbott, Pat O’Hara

Board members absent: Guy Conversano, Laurel Reimann

Others present: Paul Abbott, John Amos, Joy Brunner, Dan Wooden, Rebecca Cape, Randi Paris, Mike Beasley, Andrew Spain, Byron Hadwick

Lower Trinity Ranger District Report: Dan Wooden, Fuels Planner for the Lower Trinity Ranger District, said the district will soon begin controlled burning.

Minutes: Minutes of the September 3, 2009 regular meeting of the board of directors were distributed to board members prior to this meeting. It was moved (Barbara Darst) and seconded (John Johnston) to approve the minutes as distributed. Motion carried.

President’s Report:

Joe O’Hara attended the Trinity County Fire Safe Council meeting. They are revising their CWPP.

September Chipper Day - WCFSC volunteers spent 4 hours chipping brush on two properties along Hwy 96 in Willow Creek.

The Willow Creek FSC’s Bigfoot Days float won a first place trophy. Thank you to Pat O’Hara and her float committee. Joe asked Susan Abbott to relay the FSC’s response to the Bigfoot Days organizing committee’s request for feedback for improving the event.

Adopt-A-Highway work session is October 19 at 9:00 a.m. Volunteers welcome.

Humboldt County Fire Safe Council meets October 19 at the BLM office in Arcata.

Treasurer’s Report:

Laurel Reimann was unable to attend the meting. She did not submit a report.

Vice President’s Report:

CEQA Meeting - Barbara Darst reported on the September 9 meeting she and several WCFSC members had at Streamline Planning Consultants in Arcata regarding the CEQA process and cost. $500 is the estimated cost for a CEQA exemption, and the CEQA cost could be as high as $2,000. It could take 2 - 6 months for an exemption and longer for a full CEQA document. The Clearinghouse Grant will fund CEQA expense, and a request for CEQA exemption should be initiated without delay. Following discussion about initiating an exemption using WCFSC funds upon signing contract with starting date of the grant, it was moved (Pat O’Hara) and seconded (John Johnston) to authorize a Willow Creek Fire Safe Council board member to sign a contract with Streamline Planning Consultants upon starting date of the grant to initiate environmental compliance documentation, using WCFSC funds not to exceed $500, and to be reimbursed from Clearinghouse Grant funds. Motion carried.

Purchase of equipment for SWAP - A brush ax costs $59.95. No action taken.

October SWAP projects - SWAP crew will work with WCFSC volunteers to clear brush on Louie Walton’s Patterson Road property on October 16. No response to date from Willow Creek Ace Hardware’s owner about clearing behind the store on Hwy 299.

Unfinished Business:

Waterman West Integrated Vegetation Management Project - Randi Paris, USFS Lower Trinity District Resource Officer, distributed flyers for the Oct 7 and Oct 10 public input meetings.

Taste of Willow Creek - Andrew Spain said he interacted with many people to explain the Forest Service’s Waterman West project at the WCFSC booth at Sentinel Winery.

Two Rivers Harvest Festival - WCFSC will not participate this year.

Mission Statement - Susan Abbott, Pat O’Hara and Dan Wooden were appointed to review the Willow Creek Fire Safe Council’s mission statement.

New Business:

Northwest California Resource Conservation & Development Council - Bryon Hadwick, National Resource Conservation Service’s co-ordinator for the NCRC&D, asked for direction as to the agreement by the NCRC&D to assist the Willow Creek Fire Safe Council with technical assistance and funding sources to develop a Fire and Fuel Management Plan. The WCFSC had requested help to fund an assessment for the Lower Trinity area in Humboldt County, such as that done in Trinity County by licensed forester and consultant Ken Baldwin. It was moved (Barbara Darst) and seconded (John Johnston) to authorize the NCRC&D to move forward with a search for a grant to fund a fire and fuels assessment. Motion carried.

Fire Safe Day Fair Grant Proposal - Rebecca Cape presented a proposed grant request for $5,974 to fund the 2010 Fire Safe Day Fair. Following discussion, it was moved (Susan Abbott) and seconded (Barbara Darst) to authorize Rebecca Cape to write a grant proposal to fund the 2010 Fire Safe Day Fair. Motion carried.

Web Site - Dan Wooden offered to assist the WCFSC to establish and maintain a web site. Discussion followed, but no action was taken.

Election of Officers - Postponed to the November meeting due to lack of time.

Adjournment: Meeting adjourned at 9:12 p.m.

Susan Abbott, Secretary