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Agendas and Minutes

Forest Lands Commission (View All)

Regular Minutes

Minutes
Tuesday, October 10, 2006

MINUTES FOR THE MEETING

ASHLAND FOREST LANDS COMMISSION

October 10, 2006 – 5:30 PM

Community Development, 51 Winburn Way

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:  Richard Brock (Chair), Anthony Kerwin, Jim Lewis, Joseph Vaile,

                                         Diane White, Zach Williams

Members Absent:      Dan Maymar

Staff Present:              Chris Chambers, Marty Main, Keith Woodley, Nancy Slocum,

Non-Voting Members Present:         Cate Hartzell

 

I.                   CALL TO ORDER: Chair Brock called the meeting to order at 5:31 PM in the Siskiyou Room. Zach Williams introduced himself as the new Forest Commissioner.

 

II.                APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Lewis/White m/s to approve the minutes of September 12, 2006 as submitted. Motion passed unanimously.

 

III.             PUBLIC FORUM: None

 

IV.              ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA: Chris Chambers asked to add “Noxious Vegetation Inventory and Control Plan Update” to the agenda. Brock, Commission Chair, agreed.

 

V.                 OLD BUSINESS

A.     AFRCAT / AFR Update – Woodley reported that Linda Duffy would be unavailable until after October 17. Main noted that the Forest Service’s Red Tree Vole contract had been awarded and the Northern Spotted Owl survey was in process.

 

B.     Noxious Vegetation Inventory and Control Plan Update – Chambers distributed a draft Weed Management Area Strategic Plan to the Commission earlier via email. He needed the plan to apply for the NFW grant due October 27. He would like the Commission’s feedback. The grant money, if awarded, would be used to hire surveyors.

 

The grant requires a 1:1 match that would include a $25,000 to $35,000 contribution from the Parks Department as well as personnel costs. The grant award would therefore be approximately $25,000 to $35,000. The money would be available next May, which is considered a good time to begin surveying.

 

Hartzell had some ideas on how to improve the grant application with the use of joint partnerships.  

 

C.     Review Winburn Inventory Data and Prescriptions –

1.       Summarizing Unit 4, Brock noted Main’s document (A Silvicultural Overview and Analysis of the Winburn Parcel) listed three choices: a) thinning from below; b) thinning more; c) thinning from below, but more around large trees. Brock suggested using option “a” with some of “c.” Unit 4 was described as generally dense, open in the understory and all the same age. It was regarded as “park-like.”

2.       Unit 5 consisted of two westerly aspects: 5a) moist soil, understory, noncommercial management, a source of City water; and 5b) Similar to Unit 1 with dryer upland settings. Unit 5 was a candidate for heavy commercial and non-commercial thinning. Generally, Main was concerned about the significant amount of large fuel loading slash in the Winburn Parcel. There was a fire danger even in the winter. Prescribed burning under these conditions, from a contractor’s point of view, was dangerous.  

 

Unit 6 was not considered a fire priority. The landscape was an overly steep extreme hazard zone subject to slope instability. The recommendation was for light non-commercial thinning. It was habitat for a lot of wildlife.

 

3. A guideline for sites to visit was distributed by Slocum. Commissioners Brock, White, Vaile and Lewis would attend the hike.

 

D.     Continue Discussion on MOU Draft – Tabled.

 

VI.               NEW BUSINESS  

           

A.  Preliminary Siting of Crowson II Reservoir – This item was tabled.

 

B. City Council Review Questions -

1.   Is the purpose of your commission clearly stated and still applicable in the resolution? Resolution 2005-31 outlines the charge of the AFLC. That resolution does not include a “purpose” statement. The commission asked that one be added to a new resolution and an example is included in the attached draft.

 

2.   Are the powers and duties clearly sated and still applicable in the resolution? The “power and duties” are clearly stated in the resolution and were taken directly from the 1992 Forest Plan. The AFLC is not doing anything not stated or inferred in the current resolution, however the language was considered either too specific or out of date. Their basic charge is to implement the Forest Plan – a very broad mandate.

 

3.   As a commission do you feel that you accomplish and succeed in carrying out the purpose and duties listed in the resolution? Yes, the AFLC feels it accomplishes the duties listed in the resolution. A riparian plan is something the commission felt remiss about.

 

4.   Does your commission establish annual goals? Yes, the AFLC establishes and/or reviews goals (attached). This year the commission saw the need to expand annual goals to three year goals as nearly all their projects take more than one year to accomplish.

 

5.   As a commission, do you experience any frustrations or confusion with the process, communications, commission work load, etc? The AFLC did feel confusion about some of their “powers and duties.” The commission would like to clarify their collaboration with the Parks Department especially in regards to trail maintenance on city lands (soil erosion being a big concern), a community volunteer program and a recreation plan (an ambiguous term). The AFLC would also like to understand their level of involvement with the Forest service and the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

 

6.   Can you suggest any improvements in communication between your commission and the City Council? The AFLC communicates with the Council when their approval is required on a final draft (e.g. CWPP, Restoration Project) but little else. They are comfortable with the current level of communication because the Council Liaison, Cate Hartzell, attends nearly every meeting.  One example where communication could improve is the AFLC’s current plan to update the MOU with the Forest Service. Should the commission get direction before they begin or do they draft a MOU and then bring it to the Council? 

 

7.   Does your budget allow you to function the way you feel it should? Yes, the commission felt their budget was adequate.

 

8.   Does the name of your commission reflect what you are doing? The AFLC was happy with the name of the commission.

 

9.   Is the size of your commission too small? The size of the commission is just right.

 

10.  Do you have difficulty achieving a quorum? Do you have difficulty recruiting new members? At times the commission has had difficulty achieving a quorum. Many members are in forest related fields and work daylight hours over the spring and summer. In response to this the commission changed their meeting time from 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM. If there is a vacancy on the commission, as was the case this spring and summer, we also have difficulty achieving a quorum. This leads to the question regarding recruiting new members. There have been times when we have three citizens applying for one vacancy and other times when the position is open for six months. It seems to depend on whether the commission is currently working on something considered controversial.

 

                                         

VII.           ADJOURN: 7:32 PM

 

Richard Brock, Chair

 

Respectfully Submitted, Nancy Slocum, Clerk

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