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Agendas and Minutes

Forest Lands Commission (View All)

Minutes for July Meeting

Tuesday, July 14, 2009



Tuesday, July 14th, 2009

Community Development, 51 Winburn Way



I.                   CALL TO ORDER: 5:35 PM

MEMBERS PRESENT:       Christopher Iverson, Craig Gorson, Tony Kerwin (Chair)

                                                                                    John Williams  

Members Absent:                              Melody Noraas, Dan Maymar

Staff Present:                                                 Chris Chambers

                                                                                    Pieter Smeenk

                                                                                    Margueritte Hickman,  

                                                                                    John Karns

Others Present:                                  Terry Baker, US Forest Service

                                                                                    Scott Spangler, SOU student

                                                                                    Frank Betlejewski, citizen


II.                INTRODUCTIONS 

A. Fire Chief John Karns introduced himself to the Commission. Introductions were made by all.


III. APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Minutes were reviewed. Two additions to the members present were made—both Frank and Pieter were left off the list of participants. Frank corrected that Douglas-fir mistletoe is present not only on the ridges, but everywhere.            


III.             PUBLIC FORUM



Gorson requested an addition to the agenda for a non profit discussion.

Frank Betlejeweski requested that the AFR update be moved up on the agenda. 



V.                 BUSINESS

A.     AFR Review & Update

Chris Chambers gave an update on AFR and the monitoring effort. Frank will be completing his survey work in the watershed and recording the information in a GIS database and displayed for the Forest Service and FLC to see.


B.     Public Outreach Plan Continued Discussion

Three elements were identified as components of the Public Outreach Plan: hikes, maps, and education

Chris Chambers talked about upcoming hikes as part of the Ashland Forest Resiliency project and a need to keep the public interested and not overwhelmed with information and hikes. He suggested postponing FLC hikes to City lands in favor of the FLC supporting AFR hikes this summer. Kerwin agreed that since there are no projects on City lands, we should focus on the AFR outings. Both Iverson and Williams were in favor of keeping a Winburn hike, but in the fall.  Agenda for next month’s meeting: schedule of hike to Winburn for the fall. Chris Chambers will bring more info to the next meeting on AFR hikes this summer.

Chris Iverson reviewed a letter from Laurie Hayden, an educator who teaches local kids about trees and forests. She anticipates having time this coming spring to help teach a curriculum if funded to do so. Laurie thinks there is funding out there for a project like this.  Tony liked the idea, but wasn’t sure the FLC should be engaging in this to directly sponsor creation of curriculum and funding this project.  Tony is concerned that the FLC’s direction from Council doesn’t include this type of work.  This may need to be clarified with Council or by reviewing the by-laws.  One option discussed is whether the Commission can provide technical input into a program.  This seems to be a role (as a resource) that isn’t controversial.  Scott Spangler’s wife is a teacher who’s had Laurie in her class and the kids have learned a lot from her presentations.  Laurie may have her own non-profit in Talk About Trees. All agreed that the goal of education is very important for our community and watershed.  Chris Iverson will continue to explore this option and Laurie will be at the next meeting.

Discussion turned to the idea of a map of the watershed. Chris Iverson explained the idea of the map containing information about the watershed and created by a local artist.  Map will function to bring people up to speed on the issues.  The map can bring people up to speed on work done in the past in different areas of the watershed and to identify with where the watershed is.  Map can be built on with local businesses.  Education will benefit the City in the end by reducing calls on issues like smoke. Distribution was brought up as a question.  Chris is envisioning handing it out and putting it on the web.  Funding sources are out there including businesses donating time and materials and perhaps the Food Co-op.  Chris Iverson would like this process to move forward.  Tony would like to focus on the distribution channels.  The process will be put on as an agenda item for future meetings in order to move forward and get the map printed.


C.     Ashland Forest Plan Update Discussion


Ashland Forest Plan was written in 1992 and is now out of date and needing review and updating. There are several newer documents that need to be included in the references and content.  There is also a need to involve the public in this process—why Rich Whitley was here a couple meetings ago.  Tony still needs to create a synopsis of what needs to be updated in the plan.  A major topic next meeting will be how to involve the community in the planning process. The original process was done through a consultant, but Tony thinks that it could be done in house this time. Pieter explained that the process of master planning is now including a forecasted financial plan for a capital improvement project.  Having the Ashland Forest Plan as part of the Public Works master plans might be a way to lend more support for work on the City forest.


Tony asked about the Forest Interface budget, and Margueritte and Chris will mail the budget information to the Commission.


D.     Commission 3-Year Goals


Three Year Goals were reviewed. Progress had been made on many goals and the majority are complete. Chris Chambers will send out the goals to the FLC before next meeting.




Craig Gorson explained his non-profit “Let’s Be Clear” as a website for information regarding information about wildfire prevention.  It’s in its early stages at this point.


Terry mentioned that his friends in New York City have put together a website that brings together community projects and funding that has been successful in getting projects done in their own backyards.


John asked Terry Baker what he knew about stimulus funding for local Forest Service projects and prioritizing. Terry said that they still don’t know what the funding levels will be and prioritizing has largely been done.   



A.     Next Regularly Scheduled Meeting: August 11th, 2009


IX.           ADJOURN: 7:01 PM







In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance to participate in this meeting, please contact the Public Works Office at 488-5587 (TTY phone number 1 800 735 2900).  Notification 48 hours prior to the meeting will enable the City to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to the meeting (28 CFR 35.102-35.104 ADA Title I).


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