The Lake Shastina Community Services District Board of Directors took action last Wednesday to certify itself into the Incident Command System and to contract with EF Recovery Program to recover costs to the Fire Department for responses made outside the district and for non-essential 911 calls.

President Carol Cupp welcomed Director Stan Beck, who was sworn in with Directors Norm MacIntosh, Paula Mitchell and Rick Thompson for their four-year terms in early December.

Directors elected Thompson to serve as board president starting in January, while Mitchell was elected vice president, and General Manager Mike Wilson continues as secretary/treasurer.

During the director comments part of the meeting, Beck said, “I am looking forward to serving the people again.”

Mitchell said, “I look forward to working together for the betterment of the District. I look forward to continuing our recovery period.”

Thompson said, “I want to welcome Stan. I look forward to working with Stan. I think Stan has an inside knowledge. Merry Christmas.”

The Board considered and approved the motion 5-0 to express interest for a Board Member to be a Special District Representative to attend the Golden State Risk Management Authority meetings. GSRMA insures the District for risk management.

“It would be a good idea to be involved,” Thompson said.

“They reached out to us, Wilson said. “We have participated in some of their trainings.”

“The GSRMA will choose someone to serve on their Board of Directors from among their client agencies,” Thompson clarified via telephone Friday.

The Board heard a report and carried the motion 5-0, to authorize all interested Board Members to attend an Incident Command System class in January, 2019.

For FEMA funding, the “requirement is that officials be certified by the ICS system,” Wilson said. “I would like to encourage each member to attend.”

Wilson said Director Beck “probably has enough training in ICS because he is a former police officer.”

All the directors have expressed an interest in attending the training in Weed.

The Board then considered entering into a contract with EF Recovery Program. The basic plan they offer would contact the insurance companies to be reimbursed for the cost and use of Fire Department equipment on out-of-district calls and on unnecessary 911 calls.

Some out of district calls are often involving semi trucks on 97 or A-12, Wilson said. The two to three hour calls are expensive, and this contract will allow Pappas to make the decision whether to have EF Recovery seek compensation from the responsible party’s insurance company.

“We have to be careful,” Thompson said.

Pappas said unnecessary 911 calls are a problem. The most “egregious” caller is someone who uses 911 to call “sometimes seven times a day” for “Firefighter P,” he said, to come and “stand her up,” then she would sit down again.

In a 5-0 vote, the Board voted to approve Resolution 7-18 regarding working with EF Recovery.

Closed session report

The directors met for closed session before the meeting because of the holiday. General Counsel Margaret Long reported out of closed session that regarding the two cases for possible litigation, there is nothing to report.

An evaluation of General Manager Mike Wilson was also held during the closed session, Long reported, and staff was given direction regarding a conference with a negotiator.

Open comments

Cupp asked citizen commenters to gather their suggestions on each item, and said they would have “one opportunity to speak on each item.

“We may or may not be able to answer all of those comments,” Cupp said. “We should be the ones you are addressing the comments to, and we will then direct to staff.”

Lorene Miller reported that the LSCSD Fire Safe Council has set the date of April 2 for a Town Hall Meeting covering the District’s Evacuation Plan.

Wilson and Fire Chief Steve Pappas are reviewing the District’s evacuation plan with CAL FIRE, the California Highway Patrol and the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office, Miller said.

The Fire Safe Council has applied for a grant to make a fuel break 300 to 400 feet from the roads surrounding the “entire” Lake Shastina Community Services District, Miller said. The Council applied jointly with the Siskiyou County Fire Safe Council.

Department reports

Fire Department Chief Pappas was acknowledged by Wilson for having been the graduation speaker at the Fire Academy graduation. He said that Pappas gave three things never to forget: never stop giving; think outside the box; and never give up.

“And that’s not all,” Wilson said. “The Fire Academy signed Steve’s letter to get him his certified instructor certificate.”

In his report, Pappas said the Fire Department came to the aid of a man who had been driven from his house to Mayten with a “gnarly” knife-wound to the neck.

He did not want the Fire Department to go to his house, Pappas said. The man was cared for and sent to the hospital.

A head-on collision between a car and a semi truck on Highway 97 required extraction tools, Pappas said. The man in the car did not survive.

Since Robert Moser was on a sewer emergency, Wilson gave his reports. The Sewer Department has received Pump-114 back from repairs along with its spare. Wilson did not talk about the sewer emergency.

The Water Department’s SCADA system is running well, Wilson said. “I wish everything we have works as well as our SCADA system,” he added.

The district is replacing seven of its 372 fire hydrants, and Director Cupp asked why.

“They are dry barrel hydrants. There’s corrosion that builds up in them. They sometimes start to leak,” Wilson said. “The ones we are replacing are years old.”

“We (replace) five in the Reserve Budget every year,” Accounting Clerk Debbie Nelle said.

Wilson said that residents are the Water Department’s “eyes” and call in when they see hydrants leaking.

Wilson said he, Moser, and Thompson attended the Shasta Valley Basin Advisory committee meeting on Tuesday. Wilson yielded to Thompson for that part of the report.

Moser had heard that the members were going to consider appointing him to the committee, but there was “opposition from one of the committee members to appointing someone who was not within the district,” Thompson said. Because of this, Moser was not appointed.

The application to request the expansion of the Shasta Valley Basin boundary was denied by the California Department of Water Resources for lack of scientific evidence to include volcanic soils inside a basin boundary. Consequently Lake Shastina and Pluto’s Cave Basalt is not inside the boundary.

Charlene French asked about alluvial versus volcanic soils.

“The basins (here in our region) are volcanic,” Thompson said. “Pluto’s Cave Basalt is volcanic.

“Apparently there is some political stuff going on. We live on a debris flow. Everything is volcanic.” Thompson said.

The County has not decided if it is going to appeal the decision, Thompson said. He expected a call from Siskiyou County Natural Resource Specialist Matt Parker Friday.

Committee reports

The Fire Advisory Committee had “no approved minutes on the meeting this week,” Mitchell said. They talked about the budget and haven’t received the strike team monies, she said.

“We have been advised by auditors to put the money (earned by the strike teams on the books), so it’s difficult to know how much money the department has,” Mitchell said.

The goals are to build a new engine bay and to buy a new Type One engine, she said.

Mitchell reported that the Rate Study shows that the rates billed to residents for the Fire Department are “way too low.

“We are woefully underfunded,” she said. “We need (the bay and new engine) to keep our ISO rating for home insurance.”

Nelle said the District insurance company requested that a member of the Board be appointed to serve on a Safety Committee. After some discussion, it was determined to put this on the agenda for next month and that, per Counsel Long, the president of the Board could attend the first meeting on the Board’s behalf. The first meeting is to be this month.

Staff comments

Nelle said, “I wish the Board and community a Merry Christmas. Thank you for being patient while Sharon is getting the new (billing) software up and running.”

Administrative Assistant Sylvia Charvez wished everyone a Merry Christmas.

Wilson thanked and acknowledged “all of our volunteers. We have a lot of good people who show up. We often as a community rely so much on our volunteers.

“We do a lot and get a lot done,” he said.