ASHLAND FOREST LANDS COMMISSION
January 14, 2004
||0||Frank Betlejewski, Richard Brock, Jo Anne Eggers, Stephen Jensen (Chair), Anthony Kerwin, Bill Robertson, Diane White|
|Staff Present:||Nancy Slocum, Keith Woodley|
|Non Voting Members Present:||January Jennings, Marty Main|
|Non Voting Members Absent:||Chris Hearn, Cameron Meeks (Student Liaison)|
|I.||00||CALL TO ORDER: 4:31 PM|
|II.||APPROVAL OF MINUTES:|
|The December 10, 2003 minutes were unanimously approved with two minor corrections and four points of clarification.|
|Eric Navickas commented on the Forest Service's use of Defensible Fuel Profile Zones (DFPZ). He believed the DFPZs are essentially a broader flank treatment of existing fuel breaks.|
|IV.||STAFF REPORTS (20 MIN)|
|A.||Chief Keith Woodley|
|1. Report on RFP process - the Request for Proposal for a helicopter
operator has been published. The proposals are due February 18th. On February
11th information on receiving mills is due. Jensen asked about the current
price of timber. Main replied that prices are up slightly.
2. Restoration Project Progress Report - Main reported for Woodley. Main finished re-marking all but four areas that are pending additional geological review. Brock thought that Barranca was the most critical of these areas. The report recommended removal of a few dead trees, however, Main had about 100 dead trees marked for removal. Brock reminded the commission that not all of the Barranca unit is a geohazard area.
Betlejewski was also on site and said the geohazard report was only a single focus issue - other hazards include wildfire and insects. In a worse case scenario, after a wildfire these areas would be susceptible to mud slides like Southern California is experiencing. He suggested contour thinning for stand differentiating.
Jensen asked if Brock and Betlejewski agree with one another. Yes, both agreed. Main saw the issue as if you remove a tree from a slope failure area, you aggravate the likelihood of failure. He saw it as a juggling act. Main will meet with Hicks and Sitton next week to clarify their recommendation.
Robertson said this is a recurring issue. He would like to move forward with density reduction as there is an especially high mortality rate. Eggers thought it important to have this conversation with the geologist and agreed that geohazard was not the only value to consider. Brock thought the commission should authorize an ad hoc committee to finish marking the trees. Robertson moved that, with the geologist's input, Betlejewski, Brock along with Main make a final decision on the remaining unmarked trees on lower watershed as defined in the geohazard contract. Kerwin seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously. Because the ad hoc committee will not constitute a quorum, the meeting will not be noticed, however, members of the public are welcome to observe.
Woodley also reported that the City should have the road use permit from the Forest Service within two weeks on condition that the City restore the road to pre-use conditions.
|1. Winburn Progress - Main reported that they have been pile burning
in the Winburn parcel for the last week.
2. Main commented that John Schuyler, Acting District Ranger, did a good job and the restoration schedule is still on track. Woodley asked Linda Duffy to meet with him so he can bring her up to date on the Restoration Project. Robertson moved to send a letter to Scott Conroy, Rogue River/Siskiyou District Ranger, commending Schuyler. Motion approved unanimously.
|V.||PROJECTS PENDING/REQUIRING ACTION (5 MIN)|
|Jensen reviewed the action plan. Woodley noted that tentative council goals would be adopted on February 17th.|
|VI.||ITEMS FOR DISCUSSION:|
|A.||Follow up on Watershed Certification|
|Zach Stevenson, World Wildlife Fund, believed the City of Ashland would
qualify to receive FSC certification and recommended the City sign a Forest
Management Certification Application. He estimates the cost at between $3,500
and $8,000 for a six-year approval. He is asking the WWF if they might match
Eric Navickas asked that since the City is cutting some trees over 17" dbh, doing some work in riparian areas and continuing fuel breaks, would they still qualify for certification? Stevenson said that there is a provisional certification available with time limits for these types of contentious issues.
Jensen asked Main if certification would impact the current RFP. Main said that at this point certification could be a disincentive to bid. There is a wide range of beliefs about certification.
Eggers moved to direct Woodley to fill out the application form for a no cost, no obligation estimate. Betlejewski seconded the motion and it passed unanimously.
Robertson noted that if there is a successful bidder on February 18th, than certification may be moot. If no one bids the project than we can perhaps certify for future proposals.
|B.||Nomination and Vote for Vice-Chair|
|Betlejewski nominated Robertson for Vice Chair to serve the remainder of Liz Crosson's term ending May 2004. Jensen seconded the motion and it passed 6-0 with one abstention.|
|C.||Restoration Project Proposal|
|1. Subcommittee Report on Monitoring Large Tree Removal - Commissioners
Brock and Betlejewski reviewed trees marked for removal that were greater
than 17" in diameter within Units L and B. Brock reported that Unit L (by
the reservoir) contained approximately two acres of heavy Mistletoe. His
goal was an understory with a large diversity of species. He also reviewed
existing snags and logs. In Unit B all the large trees marked were dead.
He agreed with Main's markings. Betlewjewski looked for a consistent approach
to marking large trees. He looked at reducing the overall density, mistletoe
and biodiversity. Woodley thought there was a good chance that without treatment,
mistletoe from Unit L would spread to another downhill unit.
(Kerwin/Robertson motioned/seconded to extend the meeting 15 minutes. Motion approved unanimously.)
2. Objectives for Winburn Parcel - Tabled until February meeting. Commission requested that this be the only discussion item on the agenda. Commissioners requested another copy of Betlejewski's draft objectives.
|D.||Schedule Winburn Parcel Field Trips - Tabled until February meeting.|
|E.||Commission Goals for 2004|
|Commission reviewed Jensen's draft and made several minor changes. Commission directed Slocum to make the changes and have them ready to adopt at the February meeting.|
|VII.||OTHER BUSINESS - None|
|VIII.||REVIEW AND SET COMMISSION CALENDAR / NEXT MEETING|
|As the RFP deadline is February 18th, Kerwin moved to change February's meeting date from February 11th to February 18, 2004. White seconded the motion and it passed 5-2.|
|IX.||ADJOURN 6:18 PM|
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