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Agendas and Minutes

Forest Lands Commission (View All)

Regular Meeting

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

November 10, 2004 - 4:30 PM
Community Development, 51 Winburn Way

MEMBERS PRESENT: Frank Betlejewski, Jo Anne Eggers, Stephen Jensen (Chair), Diane White
Members Absent: Richard Brock, Anthony Kerwin, Bill Robertson (Vice Chair)
Staff Present: Chris Chambers, Nancy Slocum, Pieter Smeenk
Non-Voting Members Present: Chris Hearn, Marty Main

I. CALL TO ORDER: Chair Jensen called the meeting to order at 4:32 PM in the Siskiyou Room.
II. APPROVAL OF MINUTES: White/Betlejewski m/s the minutes of October 13, 2004 as submitted. Motion passed unanimously. Eggers/White m/s the minutes of October 27, 2004 Special Meeting as amended. Motion passed unanimously. Betlejewski/White m/s the minutes of November 3, 2004 Special Minutes as submitted. Motion passed unanimously.
Heiner commented on a listserv email from Dennis Odion and Eric Navickas declining the invitation to participate as an AFRCA Team member. He was disappointed at their unwillingness to participate in the community process. He said Odion's email was full of misinformation and requested someone from the commission speak to him.
A. Budget Update - As Woodley was attending a conference there was no report.
B. Interface Work - Chambers announced that the county had extending burning until November 15th.

Chambers had been contacting landowners and following up on grant recipients. He attended a conference the previous week on a variety of related topics. Jensen asked if there were any new ideas to motivate landowners. The City is currently developing an ordinance with landscaping regulations and incentives. Chambers suggested the commission form a subcommittee in the near future to discuss urban interface issues. The interface could be a topic at the next public forum. Chambers explained that budget restrictions allow for only "complaint driven" action versus "regular inspection" driven action. Chambers said Senate Bill 360 would provide education to homeowners and would be implemented within the next two years. Large scale fires make residents vulnerable no matter how close the fire is. Last year Cave Junction was nearly forced to evacuation 17,000 people in one hour. Chambers felt a sense of responsibility to prepare residents, but thought it must be balanced so not to create a culture of fear.

A. Update of AFRCA/AFLC Protocol and Meeting with City Recorder - Jensen reviewed his memo outlining his meeting with the Barbara Christensen, City Recorder, Mayor Alan DeBoer and Gino Grimaldi, City Administrator. Grimaldi would like to have the City, by means of the commission, develop a semi-permanent structure outlining the City's relationship with the Forest Service within the next six months.

Main asked, since he and Darren Borgias were the commission's AFRCA Representatives, if all responses had to be approved by the commission before submission to the Forest Service. Jensen read from his memo "decision-making re: interpretation of AFRCA continues to reside solely with the AFLC in conjunction with city staff and, ultimately the City Council if needed." Jensen said Main was considered "city staff." He regretted that stakeholders might feel as if the rug were pulled out from under them. Eggers, who is also on Headwaters Board of Directors, had heard from some stakeholders who found it difficult to stay in the process when decisions could be overridden. Borgias noted that the AFRCA Team process allowed for both a majority and minority response. Heiner noted that the City did not have ownership regarding the Ashland Fire Resiliency plan as the Forest Service makes the ultimate decision regarding the watershed.

Betlejewski asked if Grimaldi and the Mayor supported the commission in this work. Jensen answered yes. Grimaldi supported an inclusive public process.

B. AFRCA Team: Review of Minutes/Update - Main announced that he might have a future conflict of interest as he may bid on future work in the watershed during the implementation phase. The commission discussed the possible ramifications and decided there would be none.

Main and Borgias are sharing all leadership and decision-making responsibilities. They met with the Forest Service all day Monday and Tuesday, November 8 and 9, and handed out a report on their discussions. Questions they kept in mind are: What is the long-term strategy to get what we want as a community. Do we have the community capacity to make a difference?

Commission asked Slocum to notice the next AFRCA Team meeting for Friday, November 12th at 4:30 PM.

A. Field Trip Enhancements to Improve Public Participation - tabled.
A lower watershed tour is scheduled for Saturday, November 13 at 9:00 AM. The next regularly scheduled commission meeting is Wednesday, December 8, 2004.

Stephen Jensen, Chair

Respectfully Submitted,
Nancy Slocum, Clerk

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