Lake Cushman Firewise Council

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Lake Cushman Firewise Council
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Next Firewise Meeting: Feb 6th, 1pm, Firestation

Firewise Meetings
Minutes Jan 9 , 2019

Fire Station, District 18, Community Room

Meeting began at 1:00 P.M. with 25 members and visitors present.

First order of business was selection of officers for 2019.
Nominated, moved, second, approved by voice vote were the following:
Bill Sostrich, president
Joe Cochran, vice president
Jim Crawford, Treasurer
Dick Krase, Secretary

Treasurer reported a forward balance Sept 2018 $10697.19 An ending balance for December 2018 of $10760.66
Sub accounts (included in balance)
Emergency Preparedness $577.00
LED Sign $138.94
Savings $5.00

Emergency Preparedness committee received a generous donation from the Lake Cushman Booster club of $1000.00. That amount will be added in next report. Jim also encouraged everyone to take advantage of donations made through Amazon Smile and Fred Meyers. All you have to do is designate on their web sites. Spread the word. The dollars add up.

Bill gave a presentation about Firewise at Lake Cushman.  A background of its start here and it's importantance in our community.  Also Bill showed a portion of a video dealing with the characteristics and misconceptions of wildfires. This video can be seen on the Firewise website, titled, "Wildfire-Preventing Home Ignitions"(19 min)  He reiterated the need to update our Community Wildfire Protection plan.

Bill introduced our representative from the Department of Natural Resources, Ashley Blazina who spoke about how the agency would be working with and assisting us as much as possible.

It was decided to form three independent committees to work on our pressing issues. Members have offered to head up each, and will need people to join and contribute to our efforts. Those committees are: Emergency Response-Emergency Evacuation , Chair Anita Floyd Fuel Reduction, Dick Krase, Education and Public Relations, Chuck Lucas. Noted: some Community groups fit with these efforts. For example, Block Watch ties closely with Emergency Response.

National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) the umbrella agency for Firewise has new requirements for qualifying as certified Firewise Community. More documentation will be needed. The per dwelling unit requirement has increased from $2 to $24.14. This will mean we will need more documention (Timesheets) submitted for fuel reduction efforts by homeowners and groups. It would only take one hour per dwelling, which everyone does. The difficult part is to get lot owners to report work.  We need everyone to report not only fuel reduction efforts but also their time spent at special events, meetings and committee work; all which will help us reach the new goals this year. Every one of us needs to be an ambassador and talk to our neighbors. Face to face interaction is always effective. Bring someone new with you to every Firewise meeting . There are many who just need to be invited.

Fire Chief , Mike Sexton indicated the Fire Department would like to partner with us to do Homeowner Assessments.  It is another opportunity for spreading the word with positive education.  Esentially when Firewise does an assessment, the Fire Department would join us and give lot owners further information from a fire department prospective.

Other discussions and suggestions followed. Shyloh Wideman presented an excellent draft for Firewise priorities covering our value, status infrastructure, goals, benefits and potential partners. This document will be very helpful as we move forward this year.

A summary of other comments, ideas and suggestion:
Mike Sexton -There might be a way to reduce our liability when using volunteers for projects under the "Fire Prevention" mandate for the Fire Dept.
They are also moving forward on new technologies that will benefit community.
He is working on the problem of access to Potlatch Cushman Rd during an evacuation. Several owners and agencies are involved.

Aaron, General Mgr of LCMC -He's been talking with a company who does work for Mason Co.and uses huge equipment to chip and clean up. They might be able to assist us if we get grant to do big projects in Greenbelts.
He is also talking with Mason County about costs of disposal of large amounts of vegetation as at our Stump Dump or major clean-ups.
Hood Canal Communications is now doing the work on extending cable to north end of Lake Cushman. There will also be a Hot Spot at Division 3 Park

lt was suggested we have more presence in the LCMC Newsletter coming out this spring. Also include more explanation on our Volunteer Time Sheet.

Jim Crawford indicated Security now has a defibrillator in their vehicles.

 Meeting adjourned at 2:50 P.M.