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Board Meeting with CNF – February 14, 2006

 

Approved Minutes – Joint FS/NEWFC Meeting – February 14, 2006

Attending: Betty Higgins, Josh, Jim Parker, Debbie Wilkins, Don Gonzales, Dick Dunton, Mike P., David H., Lloyd M., Tania, Peter, Maurice, Jim D., Russ, Steve Rawlins, Mike Lawrence, Tim (notes);)

Projects update:

  • Deadman Stewardship will be awarded tomorrow, Browns Lake in (April), Bangs Stewardship (May), Trout North & S. Deep (August), Herron & Geophysical (Oct/Dec)
  • S. Deep EA. Finished chapter 1, Chapter 2 (description of alts.), effects analysis at the end of the month; looking for an early May decision date. 4.9 miles of new road construction (Lv. II), but closing six miles.
    • Concern about project timing, particularly regarding timber supply in late winter.
  • Vulcan – still in developmental phase, supposed to be done by this summer. Next meeting @ RRD Feb. 22 nd.
  • Upper and Lower Wolf WUI –no project initiation notice sent out
  • CE’s; FS doesn’t send a formal initiation letter – CNF offered to send NEWFC notification. Projects are in SOPA
  • Lakes Project – hope to have a signed decision mid-summer. A lot of work has been done on it.
  • Conger (CNF – project of same name in ONF) – analysis will look a lot like a EA, but 30 day comment period will come out prior to release of the EA. but new process. Something due out in March. Amy Dillion is lead.
  • Roads: new approach is “travel” which includes motorized trails and roads. Old system just looked at roads.
    • Road closures are not restricted to specific project area or watersheds. Ex.: opening 2 miles of trails in Deadman could be balanced by closing 2 miles of roads in S. Fork Boulder Creek. FS has not adopted a policy of no net increase in roads.
    • One year waiting requirement; 54 organizations, must consult with this group before a road is closed. CNF already had in place a one-year notice (posted sign) that a road will be closed.
    • FS needs to know (from NEWFC) what is the threshold of significance re roads
    • Temp. roads: not GPS’d – too much extra work -- they do not make it on the inventory
    • Can’t close roads using HFI, Cat. 10, CE, but can combined CE authorities (11 & 12) to accomplish closures – Can’t close roads using HFRA but could use other authorities
  • Ferry Stewardship: Lloyd met with Ferry County Commissioners re Ferry Fire CWPP. Commissioners would like both east and west Ferry fuels-reduction projects should happen simultaneously (special Ferry Stewardship project). Commissioners are concerned about uniting the county. CWPP is projected to be completed in June. A project of such magnitude is highly problematic for FS. Would take two years on paper to complete NEPA (field season crosses two fiscal years). It’s feasible to offer for sale summer ‘08 at earliest. CNF projects 15K acres. Rick is asking for two-year reprieve on current project targets.
  • Retained receipts -- whenever federal dollars are involved FS must do NEPA
  • Would be helpful if NEWFC could work with private land owners to get them to participate in application of prescribed fire in WUI interface
  • CNF-C – two handouts. County orientation March 1-10; kick-off -- Forest Plan Summit March 24-26 – 15 people per table, five categories:
    • Vegetation & Fuels Suitability
    • Non-motorized Rec. Suitability
    • Motorized Recreation
    • Dispersed Recreation
    • Wilderness
  • Collaborative period for each resource working group is April 1-May 9; Round-up will be at SCC-Colville by May 18. CNF not looking for consensus. Okay for working group not to make a recommendation. Data collection is prime objective. HUC 6 watershed level will be basic unit of land management.
    • Ferry County is attempting to form a coalition (want cooperating agency status), but other counties are not likely to support. Meeting Feb. 22.
    • Working groups do not include foresters, timber suitability
    • Concern about working groups meeting in group session at each planning meeting (mini-plenary).
    • HUC-6 watershed planning units are problematic (>90 watersheds across the CNF). Would be better to enlarge planning units.
    • Too much emphasis on recreation which imbalances representation at the tables
    • Mechanized non-motorized separate because mt. bikes can’t use Recommended Wilderness Areas. Problem: R-6 doesn’t have such a guideline and mt. bike exclusion should not be part of Forest Plan RWA.
    • NEED TO GET RECOMMENDATIONS TO CNF BY FRIDAY (FEB 17)

Next meeting, second Tuesday in April; location TBD