El Dorado County Fire Safe Council Meeting
October 26, 2005
Gold Hill Fire Station, 6051 Gold Hill Road
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
The meeting was called to order at approximately 1:00 p.m. by Vicki Yorty,
EDCFSC Executive Coordinator. Introductions were made. Members and guests present were:
Jody Armstrong, Bob Berry, Jennifer Boyd, Barry Callenberger, Bill Cave (Director), Mary
Cornelison (Director), Richard Englefield (Treasurer), Ray Griffiths (Vice
Chair), Allen Jaeger (Director), Joan Jennings (Director), Tom Mahach, Susan
McKenzie, Teri Mizuhara, Ed and Audrey Pomato, Barbara Rebiskie, Bill Robinson, Debbie Rood,
Bob Signor, Bob Smart, Jim Stewart (Director), Walt Tyler (Secretary), Denice
Rice, Diane Lockwood, Richard Delbridge, Robert Dorisse, Richard Dawdy, Gene Murphy, Phyllis
Mary Corneilson proposed a motion to approve the agenda as submitted. Second
by Allen Jaeger. Approved by all present.
A motion was proposed by Richard Englefield to approve the EDCFSC Minutes of
9-28-05 as submitted. Second by Bill Cave. Approved by all present.
Mary Cornelison gave a description of events of the recent emergency drill that
took place in the Volcanoville area. The following organizations and agencies were involved: USDF,
Georgetown Fire, CERT, NEST, Red Cross, EDC Animal Control, Noah's Wish, CDF, OES. The primary
concern was to evacuate the area. Various problems were presented to make the exercise realistic.
The local school evacuation plan was not available. Making the school evacuation plan available
to emergency response agencies will be a top priority. Recognizing the importance of evacuation
and fire safety measures by residents will be challenging. Mary indicated that the exercise was
successful and brought several areas to attention that need additional planning.
Rich Englefield gave the Treasurer's report. He provided the Directors with a
printed summary. He gave a current up date of the web site. He has updated the Green Waste Voucher
information. He is still working on the list of contractors to be placed on the web site and asked
the Directors to assist with developing the list. The list will be for information only and the
EDCFSC will not endorse the contractors.
Diane Deally-Neill gave a report on the 2005 California Forestry Challenge.
There were over 100 people involved this year. There was TV and Mountain Democrat coverage. Part
of the exercise was tours and evaluation of the Fred's Fire area. Participant comments supported
the quick response to harvesting the damaged timber before it could deteriorate beyond use. This
is not usual and quick harvesting should be emphasized to fire damaged timber in the future.
Overall the students seemed aware of many environmental factors.
Tom Mahach gave a report on the Sly Park Corridor Community Action Plan. He
has completed the surveys and will focus on the emergency action. Persons needing emergency
assistance are being identified. Emergency evacuation and communication plans are being developed.
Chain of command of emergency service agencies is being looked into. Emphasis is on community
being able to act on its own without outside grant or other funding.
Bob Smart reported on the progress of the Grizzly Flats CWPP. He described
the fuel reduction planning for the evacuation route (Spring Canyon) and the feeder streets within
the community. A 200' fuel reduction perimeter around the local school and fuel reduction of the
GFCSD sites (water service) are included. Funding for a local chipper and defensible space
inspections are recommended.
Barry Callenberger reported on work he is doing in Cameron Park for CDF and Fire
Safe Council. He is helping to develop a hazard map and a fuel module plan. It will eventually
be turned over to the Fire Safe Council. Every parcel in Cameron Park will be evaluated regarding
flammable or nonflammable structure, acceptable landscaping, compliance of 100' clearance of
flammable materials. Projected fire behavior will be identified.
Phyllis Banducci reported on grant funding progress and the hiring of a new
Forester. A request was made to coordinate a group workshop including all satellite Fire Safe
Councils. ICS and evacuation information would be presented and representatives could provide the
information to their Fire Safe Council members. One large workshop would be easier to conduct than
meeting with each of the ten satellite Councils. Vicki believes this is a good idea and the meeting
could be scheduled at the fire station at Diamond Springs.
Teri Mizuhara reported that she had learned that a First Alert battery operated
smoke and Carbon Monoxide detector she purchased at a Folsom store was not approved by the State
Fire Marshal. All such devices must be approved by the Fire Marshal before being made available
to the public. She has advised the State Fire Marshal Office of her findings. Read the fine print!
Jennifer Boyd reported on the recent controlled burning. It was a very good
burn but a lot of smoke. The burn was on approximately 800 acres. Weather conditions are not
always predictable and excessive smoke can result. Many concerned folks telephoned but most were
understanding of the need to burn. No grant or budget information available yet. Completion of
project map is continuing. The map will include completed and proposed projects and those in
Bob Signor advised that a new Fire Safe Council that he is involved with is
forming in Outingdale and will soon be conducting advisory residence inspections. The residents
along Sand Ridge Road and feeder roads are interested in developing a Fire Safe Council involving
the East part of the area.
Tom Mahach reported on a biomass conference he attended at Redding. Generating
plants need a guaranteed 30-year supply of usable material. The economics of the cost of
transportation, collecting, availability of materials, labor, etc., make biomass utilization for
energy conversion for profit questionable at this time. This may change in the future as technology
There are current biomass consideration and utilization requirements for fuel
reduction projects. The Federal Government has established a section to study and develop biomass
utilization. Combining biomass harvesting and energy conversion with fuel reduction projects and
timber harvesting could reduce costs and promote biomass program development. SPI has a biomass
program. The Grizzly Flats CAP includes biomass use from material removed as maintenance of
evacuation routes and fuel reduction around residences. More research is needed to determine the
cost factor in relationship to the profit factor to determine the public benefits of biomass
Vicki advised that the Strategic Planning Matrix has been completed. It has
grown from four pages to nine pages.
Bob Smart commented that a need exists for the small property owner to be
able to legally remove large trees primarily for fuel reduction or safety without going through
the very costly harvest plan permit process. Phyllis advised that provisions for tree removal
up to 150' of a residence under current fuel reduction laws are available at much less cost than
a harvest plan. She also advised that the market value of the trees removed might not pay for
the costs of removal. Tom suggested that a cooperative effort by property owners could make the
removal of a limited number of trees feasible. He believes that the existing policies and
procedures for tree removal are confusing and a clear-cut and easily understandable policy/procedure
should be written.
Gene Murphy advised that the Gold Bug Fire Safe Plan has been completed and
submitted. It will be referred for final approval by the Placerville City Council after more
internal reviews and approvals.
Bill Cave reported on the progress of CWPP and grants for Auburn Lake Trails.
They are very active and everything is moving along well. Auburn Lake Trails has approved the
purchase of a chipper to be used to help maintain fuel reduction in the area. A grant request has
been submitted to FEMA for fire hydrants.
The meeting adjourned at approximately 3:00 p.m. Next meeting will be 11-15-05.
Submitted by Walt Tyler Secretary, EDCFSC