Frederick County

Forest Conservancy District Board

February 11, 2013 Meeting Minutes

Those present: Steve Thrasher, Jim Arnold, Tom Anderson, Keith Schoonover, Ginny Brace, Vince Perrotta, Tyson Rose, Bob Webster, Mike Kay

  1. Keith called the meeting to order and January’s minutes were approved as written.

  2. Membership: Keith and the rest of us welcomed Vince as a new member of the Board. Keith presented Vince with his citation. Later…Keith presented Tyson with his reappointment diploma to the board.

  3. Treasurer’s Report: Tom reported that we received a $650 grant from Frederick County as per the MOU the Board signed with the County indicating that we will continue to review timber harvest plans in Resource Conservation areas.

  4. Bob Webster: Forest Service Reorganization Presentation

              1. Bob presented a comprehensive overview of the reorganization the Forest Service will be going through next physical year in a PowerPoint presentation. In essence this reorganization is intended to position the Forest Service to better allocate its personnel and resources to focus on critical issues in lieu of declining budgets and reduction of work force. The focus of these critical issues was stated in the Forest Service Work Plan 2013. (Bob handed out this plan to those present.) The critical issues overviewed in this plan are: I Restore and Sustain Forest Landscapes, II Ensure Healthy and Resilient Forests, III Ensure clean and abundant water, IV Create Jobs and Sustainable Communities, V Make landscapes more resilient to climate change. The new organization will also help achieve enhanced career opportunities for employees.

                1. Organization: No jobs will be lost in this reorganization employees work places will remain the same.

                2. The 4 Current Regions will be changed to 3 Teams

                  • Piedmont: The combination of Southern and Central Regions

                  • Coastal: Eastern Region

                  • Appalachian: Western Region has already approved the overall concept of this organization.

                3. Each present employee will have a position in the reorganization and some newly created positions will be filled by competitive interviews.

                4. We hope to have this organization in place by July 1, 2013.

              2. Bob thanked the Forestry Boards for their work and said that the function of the Boards should not be affected by the new organization and the Forest Service considers the Boards to be a very close ally. This is the reason this program is being delivered to each Board across the state. Bob took his leave and if he followed my instructions on making a left onto Baughman’s Lane and a right onto Route 40 should have made it back to Cumberland in 1.5 hours. (Unless he encountered some traffic or stopped for coffee.)

  5. Forest Management Program: Mike distributed copies of the program to those present and this agenda will be attached to the minutes. The program will be held on Monday nights on March 4, 11, 18. Since the 11th is the night of our monthly meeting we decided to meet at the Extension Building at 6:00 pm to conduct a short meeting before the program as our March meeting. Ginny will supply the refreshments for the March 4 program and Mike will bring them on the 11th and 18th. The Board will set up a revolving power point slide show as part of their exhibit; Tom will give a short presentation before the program on the 11th. And members will be around to help out as necessary.

  6. Education Programs: Forestry Board members developed a Forestry Merit Badge Day program using the guide book that Melissa Udbinac provided. The program will be held at Gambrill State Park and The Frederick City Watershed. Mike communicated this proposal to Melissa who has not yet responded back. Claude spoke to his contacts and they said that they would like to proceed but would rather conduct the program in the fall of the year. After some discussion it was decided that we would propose holding the program either September 28, October 5, 12; and the Boy Scouts could pick a date. The program would run from 8:30 – 12:00. We will develop an agenda and do a dry run of this program later in the summer.

  7. Neighborhood Green Training: Mike mentioned that he was part of a conference call to help plan the upcoming Neighborhood Green Program. This program will be held on Saturday, May 18, 2013 from 9:00 am until 12:00 pm with no lunch being offered. There will be a $10 fee for attendees with registration. Manuals will be available for purchase; but they will not be given out free to anybody who attends. Heather also stated that she hopes the Board would bring any additional handouts that they think the attendees would find useful such as the Forestry Board Brochure, NRCC Camp, Invasive Species Control, Tree Planting etc. Heather asked Mike to inquire whether the Board would like to help sponsor the training by donating some funds for the morning refreshments. The Board said that they could provide some funding; and, we can discuss this further at the next meeting.

  8. Nature Notes: Ginny mentioned that we have built up enough of a backlog to get us up to “real time” articles that occur once spring arrives. Ginny suggested that we do an article on sap rising in trees and what it means to the trees development etc.

  9. Web Site: Tyson said that the site is up to date and he asked whether we could supply some of our old Newsletters to post on the site. Mike and Jim said they would look at the old files and send copies to Tyson.