Minutes June 2017 posted here.
CAMBRIA FOREST COMMITTEE
TO CONSERVE AND MANAGE THE NATIVE FOREST OF CAMBRIA
June 14, 2017, 6:30 PM
Cambria Rabobank, 1070 Main Street
A Quorum was established by attendance of Crosby and Laura Swartz, JoEllen Butler, Julie Jorgenson and Christine Heinrichs. Tony Church and Laurel Stewart of NCAC, CSD liaison Harry Farmer, Jim Neumann of Cal Fire, and Nancy Anderson of Greenspace also attended.
Public Comment and Questions: Jim Neumann reported from San Luis Obispo Fire Safe Council that they did some test burns of small piles of french broom that had been removed on Covell Ranch. They have sent a logging team from Ventana Forestry to the Ranch to fall dead tees and salvage usable timber for Pacific Lumber. Pines are not showing signs of regrowth in the cleared fuel break. He cautioned that it is dangerous there: two trees fell without help near the loggers. Harry Farmer noted that the public has some rights to access on the Ranch that have not been honored in recent years.
Tony Church asked about removal of broom from the west side of Highway 1. It’s priority #5 of 5 for Cal Fire. The brush bears on the issue of deer on the highway, because it’s their habitat.
Approve Minutes of May Meeting: approved as written.
Treasurer’s Report: Laura Swartz reported $3,073.76, including $215 of the first Community Council grant and $750 of the second.
Invasive Weed Guide Status Report: Design is proving more expensive than anticipated. Printing costs will be $925 for 100 copies. Laura is exploring other sources of funding. She will apply to the Fire Safe Council and the County. The Garden Club might donate. The Forest Committee has some donations from 2016. Bruce Fosdike said he may have some suggestions. Christine will post a request for donations on the web site, offering a free copy of the book with every donation.
Invasive Weed Information for iNaturalist Website: It is posted online and on the app under Cambria’s Invasive Weeds. Check it out. http://www.inaturalist.org/projects/cambria-s-invasive-weeds
CCSD Environmental Impact Report: Not approved due to late posting of the Adaptive Management Plan. The Forest Committee did not submit an official letter, but Crosby and Laura Swartz and Christine Heinrichs submitted letters as individuals. The EIR does not address the effects of growth that it is intended to serve. Laura has made a map of the lots on the Water Wait List showing that many of them are heavily wooded lots in the forest. Thirty-four lots are classified as Highest Priority Conservation habitat. Developing them will impact the overall forest integrity.
MUP for Eucalyptus Tree Removal on FRP: FRP board split 4-3 on the issue of removing all trees or only the smaller trees. FRP executive director JoEllen preferred to remove all, citing the example of another section of the ranch where pine regeneration was better in the section where all eucalyptus were removed. The ranch is classified as mixed oak and pine forest. “I consider it a forest health problem,” she said.
Letter to the Cambrian: Connie Gannon wrote a Viewpoint on removing thistles. It will be posted to the web site.
Sudden Oak Death Field Sampling: The Swartzes and the Heinrichs participated. Results will be posted in the fall.
Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan: The plan recommends implementing the Forest Management Plan and hiring a forest ecologist. We should be prepared with names of candidates for the position.
Report from Fire Safe Focus Group: The group is looking for other ways to get funding for a biomass cogenerator now that the CSD has not been invited to submit a grant application to Cal Fire. Jim Neumann noted in his report that the pine trees deteriorate quickly and may not be suitable fuel for a cogenerator. Crosby Swartz and Laurel Stewart noted that it is powered by a diesel generator, with resultant noise and fumes.
No New Business
Smartphone Forest Application: iNaturalist app reported under Subcommittees.
Agenda Items for Next Meeting:
Laurel Stewart suggested reading the revised North Coast Area Plan, which is coming before the North Coast Advisory Council for approval. It makes changes to Transfer Development Credits that may impact that program and allow larger footprints for houses and decks. Tony Church found it very confusing.NCAC will act on it at their July meeting.
Changes to Guest House and Secondary Units may affect water use by short-term rentals through Air BNB, but such units also provide affordable housing. These additional tenants increase the statistical number of people per housing unit. “They (the CCSD Board) are not taking this increasing occupancy into account,” Crosby said.
Public and Director Comments: Cal Poly Forestry Professor Sarah Bisbing has taken a new position in Alaska. Christine will contact Matt Terzes, the graduate student who is leading research in Cambria’s forest and invite him to a meeting.
Adjourned at 8:16 pm.
Next Meeting July 12, 2017