M I N U T E S
McKenzie Watershed Council
LOCATION CHANGED to MWC Office
January 14, 2016
5:00 p.m. – 6:02 p.m.
PRESENT: Council Partners: Wade Stampe, facilitator (resident partner), Kurt Cox (McKenzie School District), Ralph Perkins (Upper Willamette SWCD), Bob Bumstead (McKenzie Flyfishers), Maryanne Reiter (Weyerhaeuser), Chad Helms (Army Corps of Engineers), Jeff Ziller (Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife), Craig Patterson (resident partner), Steve Mealey (McKenzie River Guides), Andy McWilliams (resident partner), Randy Hledik (Wildish), Loren Leighton (IP), Diane Albino (Mohawk Watershed Partnership),Joe Moll (McKenzie River Trust), Karl Morgenstern (Eugene Water & Electric Board), Mark Stephen (Bureau of Land Management), Mike McDowell (resident partner), George Brown (Eugene City Council), Dave Ralston (City of Springfield), Terry Baker (USFS), Rod Fosback (Northwest Steelheaders); Staff: Amanda Wilson, Jared Weybright, Christer LaBrecque, and Justin Demeter; Guests: Nancy Toth.
ABSENT: Carol Ach (resident partner), Keir Miller (Lane County), Arlene Dietz (Rice Family Farms), and Steve Raymen (resident partner).
PROXIES: Arlene Dietz gave her proxy to Ralph Perkins.
- INTRODUCTIONS AND APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Members provided introductions and approved the agenda with no changes.
- GENERAL PUBLIC COMMENT SESSION
No public comment was given at this time.
- APPROVAL OF DECEMBER 2015 MINUTES
December minutes were reviewed by Partners.
Council Partners approved the December 2015 meeting minutes, with all Council Partners showing Consensus Level 3.
- PARTNER ANNOUNCEMENTS
Mr. Helms shared that the Willamette Fisheries Science Review will be held in Corvallis in February. The USACE is moving forward with this project to create a permanent solution for downstream fish passage at Cougar Dam. This will replace the Portable Floating Fish Collector. He will keep the Council posted as project progresses.
Mr. Stephens shared current staffing and leadership changes with the BLM. Additionally, BLM is working on a management plan for Western Oregon with an EIS to be released in spring.
Mr. Bumstead shared that McKenzie River Cleanup for 2016 will take place on July 9th this year.
Mr. Baker shared that the Goose Project Decision will be signed by the end of this month. Forest Service staff will be starting the South Fork McKenzie Environmental Assessment soon. The Deer Creek Project did not receive any comments and will proceed through the NEPA process. He also checked in with Mark Schultz about becoming a member of the Council and he was interested.
Mr. Fosback shared that the hatchery is up and running for this year.
Mr. Patterson shared that he had Ms. Wilson forward a video to share with Partners. He encouraged partners to watch it if they had not. He believes that the issues raised in the video should be on our radar as well. Mr. Perkins and Mr. Weybright shared that they had viewed it.
Mr. Moll shared that at the end of December Meyer Memorial Trust produced the Willamette River Report Card to give an easily understandable way to present how the Willamette is doing as a whole. He provided a brief update on the McKenzie Camp purchase. Phase I closed on Dec 30th with 148 acres added to the MRT holdings. River left should close in mid-February. The purchase does include the Fin Rock boat landing and the old Rosboro logging camp. The LIDAR for the area is very interesting because the floodplain is extensive where Blue River and the McKenzie came together. On April 1st the McKenzie Memories event will take place and the history of this area will be included. He noted that there are tremendous opportunities for the McKenzie Camp area, and that Gene Stevens and Rosboro have been amazing in throughout the process. Additionally, MRT staff are going through applications for the two current openings. Hopefully they will get people in pretty quick.
Mr. Morgenstern shared that the EWEB General Manager has resigned and they are in the process of finding his replacement which could take up to 4 months.
- STAFF PROGRESS REPORT
Mr. Six shared that the McKenzie FIP was not selected to be funded by OWEB. The McKenzie was not deemed as high priority work. We gave it our best shot and he is a little discouraged, but we have a great action plan, great partners, and a great partnership. We will still have access to the regular grant program to complete the work outlined in the FIP application.
Mr. Weybright shared that on happy note were successful rounding out Deer Creek funding with the approval of the NFWF Bring Back the Natives Grant for about $60,000 for implementing the project in 2016. We have a meeting planned for February to discuss contracting and timelines. He is currently wrapping up end of year reporting for a number of grants and contract. There is a lot of planning going into both restoration and education for the next couple months including getting a couple additional education grants submitted.
Mr. Demeter shared that the state of the education program is strong. Classes are going as schedule for the most part, through some had to be rescheduled due to weather. Salmon Watch is in the planning stage for next year including a Salmon Celebration in September. He shared that Leo Pool of the BLM and longtime Salmon Watch volunteer was retiring and he was given an appreciation award for his 22 years of service with Salmon Watch. For those interested in attending his retirement party it will be held on January 22nd at 5 pm at Plank Town.
Mr. LaBrecque shared that he has been busy doing site prep at BWCA and on Cedar Creek to get ready for upcoming plantings. Additionally, he has submitted 2 small grants through OWEB and will hear back by the end of January.
- ACTION PLAN REVISIONS
Mr. Six shared that the plan for tonight does not include a request for any action, but that he and Mr. Weybright will be explaining the changes to the document. He would like members to email specific comments to staff as soon as possible or bring comments to the next meeting. The Council will be devoting a significant amount of time at the next two meetings to review and finalize the plan. We will do our best in February to be prepared to address the comments, but in order to best prepare we need comments beforehand. Mr. Weybright worked through the plan and highlighted changes and additions to each section and appendices, with a bulk of the changes happening in section 6. He noted that he spent a lot of time of sourcing and referencing studies in this section and throughout the document.
Mr. Mealey asked if there was a simple way to incorporate what the Northwest Forest Plan says currently and that maps that were generated by USFS needed to have the Forest Service shield included on them. In reference to appendix A. Kate Meyers did a lot of assessment to determine and verify data. Mr. Mealey followed with asking if the document prescribed work for the national forest? Mr. Six shared that we are working in partnership with the Forest Service, but we are not dictating work to be done on Forest Service lands.
Mr. Weybright shared that there has been a lot of work put into this process, and that he is very much open and interested in comments coming back on this over the next month. The process took a little longer than he wanted but he believes that it is an excellent document.
Next meeting at Weyerhaeuser at 5pm.
Adjourn at 6:02 pm.