Board Meeting – July 22, 2008
NEWFC Board Minutes – Approved
July 22, 2008
NRCS Conference Room
Next NEWFC board meeting: September 18, SCCD
Attending board members & staff: Lloyd McGee (president), Jeff Juel, Tim Coleman (secretary); Claudia Michalke (executive director); Ron Gray (treasurer); Dick Dunton, Derrick Knowles, David Heflick
Absent Board Members: Phil Carew, Steve West, Mike Petersen, Bob Playfair, Maurice Williamson, Russ Vaagen
Other participants: Phil Aune, Wes MacArt, Russ Larsen, Dean Cummins, Sue Lani Madsen, Alanna Mitchell, Sandy Clavell
-- Meeting commenced @ 1:10 PM
I. Review minutes
II. Public Comments from Visitors
III. Old Business / Committee Reports
IV. New Business
I. June 16 minutes – Dick motioned to approve and Ron seconded. (unanimous)
II. Public comments from Visitors
Payments to Counties --
Commissioner Cummings explained that 2008 funding has not been approved by Congress. Payments were determined by high values and cut levels in the mid 80’s, which counties will likely never see again. The 25% Fund (from timber receipts) will in no way provide the same level of funding as the mid 80’s.
No other comments
III. Old Business
A) Phil Carew has officially filled Gary Reeve’s seat on the board as a representative of Ponderay Newsprint. This means we have 13 board members total.
B) Business Report
Ron handed out a Treasurers Report. Current balance is $8,632.83. The Executive Committee has decided to allow Claudia to borrow funds to cover expenses as they occur rather than waiting for reimbursement from NRCS (grant fund manager) or Forest Service. Dick motioned to approve the Treasurer’s Report; Tim second. (unanimous)
C). Committee Reports
1. Executive Committee
- 10 year stewardship projects. Fremont National Forest has put together the Lakeview Project which provides long term stewardship contracts that form a predictable program that could fit well with NEWFC objectives. A video conference was held in Colville with Forest Service, forest practitioners and NEWFC board members present to discuss the Lakeview Project. NEWFC has been looking at this process with interest because it provides long-term predictability which fits well with coalition objectives. Misery and Malo-Eastlake are two projects that are similar in nature to those in the Lakeview Project. In order to establish a similar project locally, a first step would be to create a Memorandum of Agreement. Lloyd proposed industry pull together a draft for review.
- CNF is proposing to sell approximately 63.4 million feet of timber in 2008.
- CNF Wilderness Collaborative is likely to begin in September, to be facilitated by contracted consultants. Forest Services process is a continuation of the Forest Planning Summit (March 06 – Jan 07) of which wilderness was one of the key identified issues to be discussed. Unfortunately it has been separated from other forest management activities and as such does not present a complete management picture. Dean said the Counties will be developing a Memorandum of Agreement with the Forest Service and holding their own collaborative process. The coalition will talk to Rick Brazell about his (Forest Service) process to see if NEWFC can help improve it.
- County Commissioner letter – proposal is to send a letter to commissioners asking each county to assign someone as a technical advisor to NEWFC. Dean suggested that sending an executive summary of board notes to commissioners would be a helpful communication tool.
- Conservation District Letter – proposal is to send a letter to Conservation Districts asking each county NRCS to assign someone as a technical advisor to NEWFC.
- Grazing Study Group – GSG is a group of ranchers and representatives of NEWFC. The Group evaluated wilderness law and its potential impact to grazers. A Findings of Fact document was compiled from this process, reviewed by the Forest Service and is now ready to be distributed.
2. Taskforce Committee – the committee has come up with a list of forest management policies, which the coalition is preparing to present at the next joint meeting of the Forest Service and NEWFC in August. Lloyd proposed the board hold a special meeting to review agreements and prepare for the August meeting. Action: Lloyd will organize a special meeting
3. Project Committee – the committee is completing work on Malo Eastlake; the project will treat approximately 6,845 acres and expected to yield 13 million feet. How much is it worth? One estimate is $3.25 million in timber alone. Upcoming projects will be Pierre-Summit, Kettle Face, Conger, Hanlon. All these projects are a high priority in community wildfire plans.
4. Education & Public Relations Committee
- Colville Tribe outreach – there has been some changes in Business Council – question is who will be representing the Tribe with the NEWFC process? Tim will look into this matter.
- Board member flight over Colville NF – 6 board members and a photographer did a flight over the Colville to look at. There was a lot of diversity of forest conditions from dry to wet, roadless areas to ski areas.
- Outreach Events -- the coalition organized a breakfast in Spokane for business leaders to talk about how the coalition was formed and about our successes. Candace (our AmeriCorps volunteer) will be manning a NEWFC booth at county fairs in NE Washington.
5. Recreation Committee – this committee facilitates collaboration between motorized and non-motorized recreation interests. About 8 meetings were held during the last couple of years. First, a subset of this committee drafted a non-motorized recreation trails proposal. A motorized trail proposal was also started but not yet completed. Candace has developed a template for new trail proposals that will be downloadable from NEWFC’s website and then paired up with forestry projects. The primary objective of this committee is to create a trail system that matches up with interest groups.
6. Forest Plan Committee – draft plan is due for release in March 2010 – an EIS will be prepared for all three forests and a separate decision for each forest.
D) Grant Reports
1. Monitoring Grants – Dick handed out a monitoring report. Burnt Valley is complete and Bangs will likely begin in August. Assessment of Burnt Valley concludes that key criteria have been met. A field trip is proposed for sometime in October – Lloyd suggested that it be a board function and held during the week and public invited. Dick will come up with a couple of different days and send those out.
2. Disabled Hunter Grants— Forest Service is working on 7 disabled hunter routes. FS will do an environmental (NEPA) assessment in August. The purpose is to open motorized/mechanized routes specifically for disabled hunters. Candace is working on a disabled hunter survey as part of grant requirements. A proposal was made to talk with the Spokesman-Review about this project – the board concurred.
3. Americorp Grants – Candace will be manning a booth at county fairs and recreation planning.
IV. New Business
A) Coming events:
- July 29 – roundtable luncheon in Republic
- August 21 – NEWFC / Colville NF joint meeting
- October (TBA) – Burnt Valley and Bangs Projects field monitoring trips
Board adjourned @ 4:30 PM.