Our meeting on August 6th 2019 at Turtle Rock Park was well attended with 25 members of the public and agencies. The meeting featured a presentation by Jaimie Roice-Gomes of the Living With Fire Program at the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension and a discussion on the draft Memorandum of Agreement to formalize our governance. There was also an update by the Poor Boy Ridge/Hot Springs Corridor Work Group, an update by the Forest Service on the Dixon Fire, and a decision to simplify the meeting minutes to summary/action minutes.
Twenty years ago wildfires were assumed to set homes on fire when the flame front or radiant heat engulfed a home. It is now recognized that as many as 90% of the homes lost in a wildfire is due to flying embers, not the flame front or radiant heat. This is good news as it is relatively easy to make most homes resistant to embers. The Living With Fire Program has many excellent brochures and publications on how to make homes more resistant to embers. These are and have been available from the Alpine Fire Safe Council.
Scoping Study Update: The first interim report by the consultants is due in about a month, and will contain information on the amount and types of biomass available on a sustainable basis.
Poor Boy Ridge/Hot Springs Road Corridor Update: The work group had a good meeting on site with Registered Professional Forester Kevin Whitlock and others. The consensus was that the work group should continue to firm up the plan, start looking at funding options, and approach the property owners to get their input.
Participant Updates: Rich Harvey advocated acquiring resources to reopen the burn pile. Anna Belle Monti (USFS) reported that the HT will have a signed decision memo within the next few months for the West Carson Watershed Project. August 19th the steering committee for the Alpine County planning grant will meet to review proposals from consultants. Fuel permits are available at the Chamber of Commerce. David Griffith reported that the Board of Supervisors heard a presentation by the Eastern Sierra Sustainable Recreation Partnership; the Board will have an opportunity to join this partnership. The Forest Management Task Force is accepting landscape scale project suggestions. The Forest Service is providing a Good Neighbor Authority agreement webinar; contact David Griffith for details. Duncan Leao (USFS) reported Matt Zumstein has been selected as the new HT District Ranger. He comes from Norwood, Colorado, with a background in recreation management. Rich Adams (State Parks) expressed support for ABC’s proposed work on Hot Springs Corridor and recommended Kevin Whitlock as a resource. State Parks is not ready to be a part of any current grant application. Tim Roide (BLM) reported that the Airport 2 fire at Indian Creek resulted from an abandoned campfire. It burned in a fuels treatment area and stayed on the surface; most Jeffrey pines survived. BLM’s Alpine Fuels Management 4.0 Version Environmental Assessment was kicked off August 5th. The Poor Boy Ridge area will be expanded. Kris Hartnett reported the AFSC met with Grover Hot Springs State Park to pursue evacuation implementation. There is an issue with communication between the State Park and the Sheriff’s Department which Kris Hartnett is helping to resolve. The AFSC is still looking for groups of homes to create Firewise Communities; they enhance options for fire insurance. Mary Rawson reported that there will be a stargazing party on August 24th, at 7:00 pm, at the Alpine Airstrip. Hamburgers and hot dogs will be served. Ron Hames reported that he is still working on the red flag ordinance.
The next meeting is set for Tuesday September 3rd at 6:00 pm at Turtle Rock Park. The speaker is still to be decided and suggestions are welcome. There will also be a further review and hopefully final agreement on the proposed Memorandum of Agreement for the ABC.
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