2008 Election Map Oregon - DOC

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					     APPROVED                                                                   APPROVED

                                 OREGON SOIL AND WATER
                          CONSERVATION COMMISSION MEETING
                                    Regular Quarterly Meeting
                                      November 18-19, 2008
                                Village Green Resort and Gardens
                          725 Row River Road, Cottage Grove, OR 97424

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Opening Remarks
Doug Krahmer, Chair, called the regular meeting of the Oregon Soil and Water Conservation
Commission (SWCC) to order at 1:00 p.m. on November 18, 2008, at the Village Green Resort and
Gardens in Cottage Grove, Oregon. Introductions were made. Present at all or part of the meeting
were:

SWCC Members
Doug Krahmer, Chair           Pat Geer            Tim Kerns             Mel Omeg
Dan Logan, Vice Chair         Tom Bedell          Marilyn Rice

Advisors
Pedro Ramos, Jr., Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS)
Gary Whitney, Oregon Association of Conservation Districts (OACD)
Jane Keppinger, Oregon Conservation Employees Association Network (OCEAN)

Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) and Guests
Barbara Boyer, Yamhill SWCD
Walt Barton, Douglas SWCD

Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA)
Ray Jaindl, Administrator, Natural Resources Division (NRD)
Larry Ojua, SWCD Program Manager, NRD
Dave Wilkinson, Water Quality Program Manager, NRD

Approval of Minutes
The Commission reviewed the minutes from the August 27-28, 2008, SWCC meeting held in Salem,
Oregon.

Tom Bedell moved and Marilyn Rice seconded the motion to approve the minutes from the
August 27-28, 2008, SWCC meeting. The motion passed unanimously.

Introduction of New SWCC Members and Proposed Changes of SWCC Boundaries
Larry Ojua introduced Barbara Boyer as the newly appointed member to Tom Bedell’s position.
Tom’s term ended in June 2005. Barbara’s term will end in November 2012. Larry provided a map of
the current SWCC boundaries. The Yamhill SWCD is in Dan’s area, the Upper Willamette SWCD is
in Tom’s area, and the West Multnomah SWCD is in Doug’s area. Larry is proposing that the Upper
Willamette SWCD is moved to Doug Krahmer, the West Multnomah SWCD is moved to Dan Logan,
and Yamhill SWCD is moved to Tom Bedell. Discussion ensued regarding Commission boundaries
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                         1
and how important is it that Commission members have a direct contact with districts. Marilyn and
Barbara are okay with the changes. Pat feels that direct contact with the district is very important,
because they know you and feel more comfortable with you. Mel has a good relationship with five of
his six districts. It is important to have a set of districts, and maps of SWCC areas help to create a
better connection between the Commission member and the district.

The Commission agreed that the proposed map is acceptable and Larry will move forward and get
letters out of the new appointments and the new boundaries to all the districts. Larry has two formal
letters of interest to consider for appointment to the Commission from the Harney SWCD. Larry is
working on finding Pat’s replacement by the next meeting.

Natural Resources Division (NRD) Update
Ray Jaindl reported that the Confined Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) program’s general permit
expired July 31, 2008. The agency is working jointly with Department of Environmental Quality
(DEQ) to reestablish the general permit. Public comment on the general permit closed on October 27,
2008. On October 31, 2008, the EPA released the new CAFO rules.

Ray updated the SWCC on the field-burning program. The Governor requested the DEQ to develop a
legislative concept to eliminate the field-burning program within two years. The concept will be
considered during the 2009 session.

Ray discussed the allocation for the 2009-2011 biennium technical assistance/local management
agency/administrative (TA/LMA/Admin) funding. Currently, the distribution formula allocates the
entire amount to all 45 districts. It was suggested that we might want to hold back a certain percentage
to be allocated to special projects for districts. Tom read a message from Paul Reed. Discussion
followed about the funding issues. The TA/LMA/Admin funds ODA allocates are mainly Lottery
dollars, and there is concern over the economy and the governor’s budget. The current allocation
formula will need to be reconsidered if the Lottery dollars are reduced.

Doug asked what the percentage of unallocated TA/LMA funds is compared to the whole allocation.
Dave Wilkinson responded that currently $59,000 of the $5 million total is unallocated. Dave said this
is the first year he has tried to have the Water Quality (WQ) specialists review SWCD proposals for
the unallocated TA/LMA/Admin funds. Funds must be used by the end of the biennium. Larry
explained that the last biennium the money came through the ODA’s budget and we had more
flexibility to carry over the funding. The interagency agreement between OWEB and ODA states the
funds must be spent and projects completed by June 30, 2009. This is the reason for the special
solicitation for projects and requiring work to be completed by June 30, 2009.

Approximately $2.4 million was distributed in fiscal year (FY) 2007-08 for TA/LMA/Admin
payments. There was $69,300 unspent from reduced IGAs in FY 2007-08. A portion of these funds
was reallocated in August for eligible projects. ODA WQ Specialists determined the projects to fund
and include in the scopes of work for FY 2008-09. Several SWCDs have reduced FY 2008-09 IGAs,
leaving approximately $59,000 in TA/LMA/Admin funds unallocated. This amount may increase if
any SWCDs are not able to complete the tasks in the scopes of work, or do not meet the requirements
in the IGAs. Dave explained that the WQ Specialists bring proposals for the unallocated funds for
review at the ODA WQ staff meetings. Comments were made that all SWCDs need to be aware of the
opportunity to receive additional TA/LMA funds.


November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                              2
Ray reviewed the Governor’s budget forecast for ODA and SWCDs. OWEB will be including $5
million in their budget for SWCDs. There is a reduction in Lottery funds and state agencies are being
asked to reduce their 2009-2011 budgets. Additionally, state agencies may have to cut up to five
percent in Lottery and General funds this biennium. NRD’s budget is approximately three percent of
the Governor’s budget. ODA will know more about what will be funded when the Governor’s budget
is released in the first week of December. For the 2009 Legislative session, Ray is expecting the
Governor to be very conservative in approving any agency proposed option package.

Gary Whitney announced there might be a bill introduced in the 2009 Legislative session to refocus
OWEB and to supplement the Oregon Plan for Watersheds with the Conservation Strategy. Gary will
share any information on the bill as it becomes available.

Water Quality Management Program Update
Dave Wilkinson talked about the Pesticides Stewardship Program. DEQ has been administering this
program for several years. One of their first big successes was in Hood River, where DEQ worked
with OSU Extension Services, districts, and operators to address the findings. DEQ withheld
establishing a TMDL and to see if the levels could be reduced. DEQ is monitoring other areas in the
state for chemicals in surface water. Once the results are determined, there will be an attempt to make
them part of SWCD programs. The goal is more integrated efforts with other WQ programs. Districts
will be encouraged to modify their scopes of work with a task that specifically identifies the projects.
DEQ is working with several SWCDs and watershed council to perform testing in these areas. The
testing is being funded with 319 grants.

Dave provided an update on the Water Quality Program. NRD has received 56 complaints this year, of
which 40 are considered active, and 22 are in the investigative process. The remaining 18 complaints
have been investigated, and have established plans and timelines for follow-up. These numbers
compare with the yearly average of 55 complaints. Dave expects there will be around 15 more
complaints submitted this year. The biennial reports for the Agriculture Water Quality Management
Area Plans are on schedule, with 26 being completed this year. The report has recently been revised in
a newsletter style, with the summary of activities in the beginning and the supporting detail in the
body. WQ Specialists are trying to make the report more attractive and useful, and include pictures
and success stories. The Board of Agriculture has requested a summary of the biennial reports in a
quarterly report. Biennial reports are posted on the NRD website.

ODA Funding and Reports
Larry Ojua provided a handout that Heather Rickenbach created for her update. Heather will be
mailing the spreadsheets that were requested at the last meeting to the Commission. All of the first
quarter payments have been made. The Districts are complying with the new IGA clause for the report
deadlines. Only one letter regarding late reporting was mailed this quarter and all of the reports are
now submitted. Heather is working on the second quarter TA/LMA payments.

The director election process was different this year as per changes in statute. The write-in procedures
have changed to make it simpler for the county clerks, by requiring votes only to be counted for write-
in candidates that filed a “Declaration of Intent and request for Write-in Votes to be Tallied.” The
change in the write-in process was included in the election packets which were mailed to all SWCDs
and posted on the SWCD website. Only 27 candidates filed to have their write-in votes counted. ODA
declares the election winners for each SWCD. The county clerks get a list of the positions and the
names of the candidates that filed the declaration of interest. Larry feels that the election went
smoothly considering the changes that were implemented.
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                            3
SWCC Roles and Responsibilities
Statutory References
Larry provided a copy of Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) Chapter 568 for review, and reviewed the
proposed changes. The goal is to update the statutes, expand the authority of districts, and to clarify
the role of ODA. There is statewide support for the revisions and several district personnel are
assisting with the rewrite. It is important that SWCDs are notified in advance of any substantial
changes to the statutes to reduce any concerns or confusion. Larry will continue to provide updates to
the Commission on the progress of the rewrite.

History of SWCC Involvement and Focus
Larry provided a brief history of the SWCC for the new members. There has been series of changes
over the last nine years that have brought the Commission to where it is now. Districts have been a
part of the progress and have increased overall capacity including funding opportunities, programs, and
responsibility. The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) began in 2002. The SWCD
website has been a collaborative project with SWCDs and ODA. ODA is developing a professional
development and leadership program in place of what is currently called capacity building. Tom
Bedell would like to see a timeline showing the progression of the SWCC and districts, including
legislative changes.

Discussion followed about tomorrow’s strategic planning. Larry identified three questions for
members to think about for the SWCC’s strategic planning session tomorrow:
1) Based on what you know about the statutes and history, what do you believe are the top three or
    five important roles for the Commission?
2) What do you think districts or other partners expect of the Commission?
3) ODA can make the best use of my time on the Commission by doing the following?

Local SWCD Program Updates
Doug Krahmer explained that having district updates would become a regular Commission meeting
agenda item. Walt Barton, Douglas SWCD District Manager, was introduced to the Commission
members. Walt was invited to make a presentation on the variety of the district’s programs and
projects.

Douglas SWCD
The Douglas SWCD has hired Cindy Bright as a CREP technician, effective October 1. She was
recognized by NRCS at last year’s convention for her work with CREP. So far this year, Cindy has
completed 10 new contracts totaling about 50 acres, and is drafting four more contracts totaling 56.9
acres. Cindy came to the Douglas SWCD from the Umpqua SWCD. The work that Cindy has been
doing over the last few years has been in the Douglas SWCD but was funded by Umpqua SWCD. To
date, Douglas County has 107 contracts that include, 1,266.9 acres, 267,230 feet of fencing (about 50
miles), 36 livestock water projects, over 41,000 feet of pipeline, and over 243,000 trees that are planted
or will be planted this year. The district is working with two local high schools to grow plants for the
district. There are three greenhouses housing the plants for the students to work on.

Walt presented a PowerPoint presentation on the Douglas SWCD and the wide variety of programs
and projects. Walt showed pictures of successful CREP projects, including one that has been ongoing
for the last 10 years. Walt illustrated several local landowner partnership projects that have been
successful in creating better land management plans for the landowners to use for their livestock
operations.
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                             4
The Douglas SWCD is working with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODF&W) on a fish
habitat preservation project that includes a hatchery and fish ladder. The district is in the process of
designing the fish ladders. The cost of the project will be $500,000, and has been a very long process.
This project should go to bid for the construction phase in December 2008. ODF&W will retain the
oversight of the project.

The Douglas SWCD is working with Douglas County Parks Department to implement a Resource
Management Plan that was developed in August 2001. This project is in the Mildred Kanipe Memorial
Park, which is northeast of Oakland. Several types of treatments have been used to repair this area,
which is important habitat for the Whitetail Deer.

The Oak Woodland Restoration project is funded by, the Partners for Wildlife, Private Land
Stewardship Program, OWEB, and the Landowner Incentive Program. The noxious weed abatement
project has been ongoing also. The district has two full-time people working on this project. The
district has been working with ODA, Oregon State Weed Board, Oregon Department of
Transportation, Douglas County, Roseburg and Medford Bureau of Land Management offices,
Umpqua National Forest, and multiple private landowners.

The Douglas SWCD received a Title II and a Title III grant for creating fire ponds and tanks. The
district has partnered with Douglas County, Douglas Forest Protective Association, the Medford and
Roseburg BLM offices, Seneca Jones Timber Company, Plum Creek Timber, Roseburg Forest
Products, and other private landowners on this project.

The Douglas SWCD board has been considering a tax base. The board went to the county and was
told that the county cannot cover the costs of the district. If a five-cent tax base were to go through it
would give the district about $350,000 a year. The local OSU Extension Services office had a tax base
approved at the rate of 6.5 cents. Funding is a big factor for the district; a tax base would help stabilize
funding.

Public Comment
No public comment was provided.

Progress Report on Operations Reviews
Larry Ojua provided a report on Karla’s operations reviews. The Crook County SWCD operations
review report has been completed and sent to the board. The Union SWCD is starting the operations
review process. Marilyn Rice would like to help Illinois Valley SWCD initiate their operations
review.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:15 p.m., and will reconvene tomorrow at 8:00 a.m.




November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                                5
Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Opening Remarks
Doug Krahmer, Chair, called the regular meeting of the Oregon Soil and Water Conservation
Commission (SWCC) to order at 8:00 a.m. on November 19, 2008, at the Village Green Resort and
Gardens in Cottage Grove, Oregon. Present at all or part of the meeting were:

SWCC Members
Doug Krahmer, Chair            Pat Geer               Tim Kerns               Mel Omeg
Dan Logan, Vice Chair          Tom Bedell             Marilyn Rice

Advisors
Pedro Ramos, Jr., Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS)
Gary Whitney, Oregon Association of Conservation Districts (OACD)
Jane Keppinger, Oregon Conservation Employees Association Network (OCEAN)
Jean Larkin, Farm Service Agency (FSA)
Bill Braunworth, Oregon State University (OSU) Extension

Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) and Guests
Barbara Boyer, Yamhill SWCD

Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA)
Ray Jaindl, Administrator, Natural Resources Division (NRD)
Larry Ojua, SWCD Program Manager, NRD

SWCC Member Reports
Mel Omeg
Mel is trying to visit the districts and attend board meetings in his area. During his visits, he is asking
the districts if they have any concerns or issues, and shares information on activities and projects. Mel
recently went to a workshop on owls and bats, which was very informative and intriguing.

Pat Geer
Pat talked with several district directors at the OACD Convention, which are concerned that small
acreage landowners are not receiving the assistance they need.

Tom Bedell
Tom complimented Walt Barton on his presentation yesterday. The small grant money that the Benton
and the Upper Willamette SWCDs have received is spent down. The Benton SWCD has one new
elected director. The Benton SWCD has been going through an action planning session. This has
been a very positive exercise for the employees and the board. Heath Keirstead, Benton SWCD, was
awarded a $10,000 fellowship through Toyota to expend on leadership projects. She went to a meeting
in West Virginia, where four out of the forty fellowship recipients were from Oregon.

The Polk SWCD produces very complete minutes that include details on the projects and programs.
They are doing very well in their district; however, there is concern about the taxes not coming in as
expected.
The Lincoln SWCD has not been sending Tom meeting minutes. The Siuslaw SWCD only has one
employee. The Umpqua SWCD minutes suggest that there have been appointments to create a
complete board. Larry confirmed that the board now has a quorum to attend board meetings.
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                               6
Doug Krahmer
Doug provided a handout outlining the activities for the districts in his area.

Tim Kerns
Tim mentioned that the Malheur County SWCD sent a letter of appreciation to everyone that has been
supportive of Mike Barlow’s family. Tim is currently helping the Malheur County SWCD recover
from the loss. The soil surveys in Malheur County are going well. The Baker County NRCS just lost
their conservationist. Pedro is looking for a replacement for Baker County. The county has
approached the Baker Valley SWCD to assist with fixing a drainage ditch. The Wallowa SWCD is
considering offering soil sampling for a fee. Tim thinks that this could be a very good thing for the
district. There is a lot of CREP going on the ground in Wallowa County. The Union SWCD wants to
start the operations review process with Karla Sanders.

Dan Logan
Dan reported that the Columbia SWCD had their permanent tax rate measure pass at the 2008 General
Election. The Clatsop SWCD provides Dan with monthly reports. They are working on noxious
weeds and manure storage. They have a number of manure storage projects that are in the approval
process, which several of the locations are in the hundred-year floodplain areas and require further
approval. They are also working on a compost exchange program and outreach projects. Dan has not
heard anything from the Tillamook SWCD. The Yamhill SWCD minutes are web based; however
there are issues with the web page that need to be worked out. The Tualatin SWCD has a new
employee for the small acreage outreach program. The new employee is from Redding, California,
and she has been working in this field for some time.

Marilyn Rice
Marilyn is having a hard time getting information from the districts in her area. She placed phone calls
on Monday. Six directors and nine employees from Marilyn’s area attended the OACD convention.
The employees were complimentary on the networking and training opportunities at the convention.
The Klamath SWCD is working closely with the forest industry to apply for an education grant. The
Fort Rock/Silver Lake SWCD directors were unable to attend the OACD convention. The district is
concerned about their outreach program. There have been many students interested in natural
resources in the Lakeview and Fort Rock/Silver Lake SWCDs.

SWCC Advisor Reports
Farm Service Agency (FSA)
Jean Larkin, Lane County FSA Regional office, reported for Lois Loop who was unable to attend the
meeting due to prior engagements. The upcoming Farm Bill training will be a three-week training
session. FSA is currently working on several programs including the Disaster Crop program that
includes crop insurance for farmers. The insurance must be in place for farmers to receive disaster
relief through the program.

Jean provided two handouts that pertained to the Lane County area. Dan Logan mentioned that FSA,
NRCS, and districts would administer the forestry programs. The districts have been hosting the local
working group meetings. It is unknown at this time how the funding will be allocated for the forestry
program. The Farm Bill still has not been finalized. Jean mentioned that there are very few
landowners signing up for CREP in her region, and there currently is no CREP waiting list.

Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                            7
Pedro Ramos reported that NRCS has received their preliminary budget numbers. They are in a
continuing resolution until March 6, 2009. The preliminary projections are showing a $5 million cut in
the technical assistance program budget. Last year, the Environmental Quality Incentive Program
(EQIP) budget was at about $12.6 million, and this year it is down at about $10.4 million. The
Conservation Security Program (CSP) budget is down this year at $21.9 million from $23.4 million
last year. The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSTP) will be replacing CSP and is expected to
start during the next fiscal year. The goal for funding CSTP in Oregon is $450,000, including
contribution agreements. Training for NRCS is only about one percent of the total budget and is not
expected to be cut. NRCS is still waiting for the final budget and expects that they will be able to
continue funding the current programs.

NRCS is not able to approve contracts until the Protrak software problems are fixed in January.
Protrak is a web-based contracting module that several basins are beginning to use. NRCS is currently
being audited and the 153-page preliminary report is finished. The report includes requirements that
NRCS needs to meet by December 31, 2008. As a likely result, most personnel leave requests through
December will be cancelled. Bob Graham is in Texas for the audit report briefing. This is a national
audit and covers all expenditures including open obligations and agreements. Intergovernmental
agreements (IGAs) may be an issue. The details of the report will be revealed tomorrow.

Carol Jet retired from NRCS in January 2008 to be on the Obama Transitioning Team representing
agriculture and energy.

Districts can start applying for the LincPass cards by sending their forms to the NRCS Human
Resources Division. Districts are to fax the application to NRCS to enter the information into the
database. Notices will be sent to SWCDs of the time and location to pick up the LincPasses. The
LincPass cards are photo ID with a microchip that allows for NRCS computer access. It is important
that districts apply for the LincPasses as soon as possible to avoid any future complications.

Oregon State University, Agriculture Extension Services (OSU)
Bill Braunworth reports on the upcoming Growing Opportunity Summit that includes ODA, OSU,
Portland State University, Friends and Families Farmers, New Seasons Market, NRCS, FSA, Farm
Bureau, and independent farmers. The topics will include discussing farm transition issues and the
next generation, getting new farmers into the business, etc. There are four major areas of concern,
which are access to land, access and use of financial capital, access to markets, and technical
assistance. The goals of the summit are to broaden awareness of farm transition issues in Oregon and
highlighting the critical nature of the issue, developing a vision and strategies for program needs and
policy responses, and improve connections and collaborations among organizations. Districts can
benefit from attending this meeting by networking and creating partnerships in dealing with some of
the issues. The summit will be held in February and the date and location will be announced soon.
Bill will email the Commission updates on the upcoming workshops.

Bill presented information and a handout on the National Association of County Agricultural Agents
(NACAA). All land grant colleges in the United States have county agricultural agents that are
members of the NACAA. The NACAA sponsors an annual professional development conference.
This year it will be held in Portland, Oregon on September 20-24, 2009. There are many educational
and networking opportunities at this conference, with an average attendance of 1,400. The registration
cost is subsidized by the fundraising so that more people can attend. Attendees are also encouraged
give presentations at the conference. This conference is family oriented and there are sessions for

November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                            8
family members to attend. Bill is asking for the Commission’s support for the conference. John Bert
and Cindy McNaven are the major planners for the conference.

Bill pointed out that the next biennium is going to be rough with the projected budget cuts. Budget
cuts are expected for this biennium and over the next biennium. The budget is made up of twenty
percent Federal funds, twenty percent county funds, and approximately sixty percent state funds. The
funds are allocated according to the funding source (e.g., county funds are distributed to county offices
and agents).

Oregon Conservation Employees Association Network (OCEAN)
Jane Keppinger reported on the OCEAN Annual Meeting that was held during the OACD Convention.
OCEAN elections were conducted during the meeting; Randy White and Autumn Bryant were elected
as new board members, and the Deschutes Basin position is currently vacant. Jackie Hastings is
working on a brochure for OCEAN.

Jane referred to the transition of the NRCS common computing environment (CCE). Jane is trying to
gather as much information as possible so that districts can decide if they want to continue working on
the NRCS CCE. There will be costs associated with using the NRCS CCEs, and there are issues with
discontinuing to be on the NRCS system. Jane is working hard to retrieve as much detail as possible
so that districts can make an informed decision.

Jane spoke about the success of the OACD Annual Meeting and Convention this year. Approximately
190 people attended the convention. OCEAN sponsored eight people to attend the convention this
year. The roundtables went exceptionally well, and the education outreach sessions were new this
year. A number of the sessions from this year will be combined for next year’s convention. There has
been a request from the OACD Executive Board to find a location in eastern Oregon to hold the 2009
convention. There was an agreement in 2002 to rotate the sites to give opportunity for more districts to
attend from those specific regions. The 2009 OACD Convention will be held in Pendleton, Oregon, on
November 5-8, 2009.

Oregon Association of Conservation Districts (OACD)
Gary Whitney reported that the Defenders of Wildlife is urging OACD to ask for one million dollars of
the discretionary Lottery funds to fund CREP. Gary has spoken with Larry Ojua and Lois Loop about
the possibility. It was suggested that they speak with Mike Carrier at the Governor’s office. There are
concerns in requesting the additional funds for CREP. Gary will continue working on a proposal and
will begin drafting bill, which could be an addendum to OWEB. Lois is working on gathering CREP
financial information. Several SWCDs are assisting Gary by providing before/after photos and success
stories. The goal of gathering this information is to have a handout available for anyone discussing
CREP. Gary has been attending the OWEB CREP committee meetings with Larry and Lois. Gary
asked the Commission to help spread the message to SWCDs that OWEB has set aside funds for
CREP projects and technical assistance.

Gary has talked with Katy Kerns about working with the State Economist to determine the amount of
federal funds that is supporting the CREP program. Katy will be working with Lois Loop and NRCS
to get the correct amounts entered into the input/output model to show the economic benefits from
CREP investments. This information will be key when speaking to the Legislators and various
committees. It was suggested to update the SWCD directors profiles to aid in describing the different
talents, skills, resources, etc., that support SWCDs. These profiles would be for testimony purposes.

November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                             9
Larry Ojua mentioned that the OWEB CREP committee has been working on plans and strategies to
continue funding the CREP technical positions. OWEB is trying to determine what level of funding is
available for CREP. Gary is researching alternative funding sources for CREP. Larry has asked
OWEB when they would have a projected budget. It was suggested that another meeting be scheduled
with OWEB, with Katy Coba, Director of the Department of Agriculture; Doug Krahmer, Chair of the
SWCC; and Gary Whitney, President of OACD attending to communicate the Commission’s concern.
During the last CREP meeting, OWEB announced that a decision would not be made until May when
OWEB will have a budget and determine if there will be funds for the CREP positions in the next
biennium.

Tom Bedell moved and Dan Logan seconded the motion that the Commission is requesting ODA
to seek a commitment from OWEB to continue funding CREP technical positions through the
next biennium by December 31, 2008. The motion passed unanimously.

OACD Update on Proposed Legislation
Gary Whitney reported that he is attending the Legislative committee hearings on December 2, 2008,
in Salem. He will attend the Energy and the Environment committee hearing in the morning with Jean
Fike, to give testimonies on SWCD successes and projects. In the afternoon, Gary and Larry Ojua will
talk to the Ag Committee about natural resources and ORS 568. Gary will present the purpose of the
bill and how it will help districts. The afternoon session is an introduction of the bill to the committee.

Public Comment
No public comment was provided.

Other Items not on Agenda
Larry Ojua reported the first steering committee for CONNECT 2009 was last Friday at Canby Grove
Conference Center. There are fourteen or fifteen people on the committee. There are many good ideas
suggested that led to a long list of topics, which has been prioritized. This SWCD employee training
will be subsidized to keep the cost at $50 per person. The cost will cover six meals, two nights
lodging, and all the training materials. Larry is asking Commission members to encourage the districts
in their areas to attend. The training will be held April 7-9, 2009, at the Canby Grove Conference
Center in Canby, Oregon.

The spring director trainings are in the planning stages. The director trainings will be held in February
and March at twelve to fifteen sites statewide, and will be similar to the trainings that were held in
2007.

SWCC Strategic Planning Session
Larry asked the Commission members for their responses to the three questions he identified the day
before.

Question 1: Based on what you know about the statutes and history, what do you believe are the top
three or five important roles for the Commission as a whole?

Tom Bedell’s response was to strengthen and maintain the relationship between SWCDs and ODA;
provide leadership to districts; and provide perspectives to districts. Mel Omeg would like to see
more guidance for districts on complying with legal requirements; risk management; and assist
districts with operational reviews. Marilyn asked that the SWCC meeting minutes be completed
sooner so that the commission members can share minutes with their districts. Dan Logan would like
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                               10
to develop commission policy that promotes action, like the OWEB motion. Tim Kerns would like
the Commission to facilitate communications between ODA, particularly with the Water Quality
Program, and the districts. Doug Krahmer wants to promote professionalism of staff and boards at the
SWCDs and have the partner reports written in a way that would be easier to distribute and share with
districts. Barbara Boyer recommended the state split in four with a financial auditor for each section,
and improve communications. Jane Keppinger suggested strategic planning that compliments SWCC
and their other partners like OACD, etc. Pedro Ramos would like to see a liaison to other state
agencies and to the SWCC partners. Gary Whitney talked about the Commission becoming a link
between the Legislature and districts to distribute discretionary Lottery funds. Pat Geer would like the
Commission to provide examples such as minutes to the districts.

Question 2: What do you think districts or other partners expect of the Commission?

Tom feels SWCDs expect the Commission to understand district problems and challenges. Mel
believes there is an expectation of cooperation and sharing with partners and districts to solve
problems. Barbara thinks that districts and other partners expect the Commission to represent districts
through education and outreach, and that districts expect the Commission to be progressive and
responsive. Pat mentioned that the districts need a better understanding of the Commission. There are
districts that are not familiar with what the SWCC does or why the Commission exists. Commission
members should attend one district board meeting a year to explain why the Commission exists and
the differences between the SWCC and OACD. Jane believes it is important that districts understand
their Commission representative is a voice for them to convey districts concerns, etc. Marilyn thinks
that there is an expectation for more communication between the Commission and their partners. Dan
explained districts should know that they could use their Commission member as an advocate for
district needs. Pedro would like to see more advisory guidance to NRCS on program outreach and
coordinating across district boundaries in order to foster partnerships and strong resources. Tim thinks
that districts expect the Commission to serve as a conduit between the Water Quality and SWCD
Programs within the department. Doug believes districts expect oversight, funding, and training.
Gary stated that districts need to know what the SWCC can do for them.

Question 3: ODA can make the best use of my time on the Commission by doing the following?

Tom would like to see ODA serve on a commission task group. Mel would like to have a periodic
report from ODA that talks about the strengths and weaknesses of districts and the basin regions.
Barbara would like to be a positive voice for her district and the commission. Jane would like to see
the next year’s meeting dates and locations for the SWCC meetings, and then have the information
posted on the web site. Barbara would like to see more forward planning for meetings. Marilyn would
like to see ODA help Commission members learn to be communicators that are more effective with
their districts on the national and state levels. Dan would like to be kept informed of issues in his area
and across the state regularly. The issues would be what are pertinent to aid him in his service to the
committee. Tim would also like to know the issues across the state and not just in his area before he
reads it in the paper. If there are issues between the department and districts, then the Commission
could have the chance to assist the district before the issue gets unmanageable. Doug would like some
form of monthly communication from ODA to inform the members about new issues and updates on
how existing issues are progressing. This communication would be between the Commission members
and ODA only. Having this kind of communication between SWCC meetings would allow the
Commission members to get feed back from the districts for the meetings (e.g., preparation of agendas,
speakers, etc). Jane would like to see a more detailed agenda detailing the expectations of the districts
or partners in a brief outline before the Commission meetings. Jane would also like to see the
November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                             11
Commissions publish an annual report and post it on the web site, in the Ag Quarterly, and other
necessary places. Pedro would like to see coordinated solutions communicated across the state so that
districts can have the tools when needed, and would like to see guidance in transferring skills from one
location to the next. Pedro explained that a more consistent agenda would help members know what to
expect (e.g., regular agenda items). Heather’s reports are very effective tools for Pedro and his team
leaders. If members would present written reports of their areas, then more time could be spent on
more issues that are important. SWCC members would like to continue having the district
presentations, and have a Board of Ag report at the meetings.

A strategic planning work session was tentatively planned for December.

Next SWCC Meeting Dates
The SWCC meetings for next year were tentatively scheduled for January 22-23, 2009, in Salem,
Oregon (to accommodate SWCC members to visit with the legislators); April 28-29, 2009, in Salem,
Oregon (if the Legislature is still in session); July 20-21, 2009, in Medford, Oregon; and October 19-
20, 2009, in Columbia County.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,



Anne Friend
SWCD Program Support
Natural Resource Division
Oregon Department of Agriculture




November 18-19, 2008, SWCC Meeting Minutes                                                               12

				
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