Gold Hill Fire Department

Fire Board Meeting notes from 5-21-15

June 17th, 2015

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting 5-21-15

Notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Board Meetings are the third Thursday of each month, 7:00p.m. at the Community Center. The next meeting will be June 18, 2015. Anyone is welcome to attend.

 

The Meeting was called to order by Rick Lopez, Chair. Attending were board members Bobby Vrba, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Rick Geesaman, Paul Garabedian and community member Gretchen Diefenderfer.

 

Chief’s Report – In the absence of Chief Finn, Bobby reported that there were 2 calls: a jeep overturn and a medical call for a fall. Trainings continue. They are still waiting on a potential truck purchase.

 

Minutes –There were no corrections or additions and the minutes of the April meeting were approved.

 

New Business – Porta-Potti – The board has agreed on a license agreement between the Gold Hill Town Meeting and the Fire Board for the portable toilet. First The SafeSite Shed has to be moved – Chris needs to approve the location. Rich helped the GHTM with the paperwork to change from a 501(c)4 tax deductible corporation to a 501(c)3. He will bill the GHTM and donate the money back versus having the FPD contribute to the cost of the portable toilet as originally proposed.

Rich write a letter to the Firefighters thanking them for their response to a call in March where the victim died.

 

Visions and Goals – Rich brought up the goals for where we would like to be in 5 and 10 years. Here is list so far from the board and Chris:

10 dry hydrants in Lefthand

3 more cisterns up here

15 new young firefighters

equipment upgraded as necessary

The discussion turned to the cisterns and their location. Rick owns some property W of town and one could go there. Max and Gretchen both said that their

property down Gold Run could be used.

Dry hydrants – the board committed to at least 2 this year. Rick estimated the hardware, excavation, pea gravel, PVC pipe and backfill should be around $500 each. Rich has addresses of available locations in Lefthand . They will look at the 5 available and pick the 2 best sometime in the first 2 weeks in June.

 

Gretchen Diefenderfer

 

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Natural Disaster Preparation info from FEMA

April 17th, 2015

Forwarded from Chris Finn (cfinn@mho.net) from Colorado State Fire Fighters Assoc.

 

From: District2 [mailto:district2-bounces@csffa.orgOn Behalf Of Paul Acosta via District2
Sent: Tuesday, March 03, 2015 2:10 PM

Subject: [District2] FW: America’s Prepareathon

Please pass this on.

Hey all, this a great link made from FEMA to use to make sure your family is prepared for a natural disaster.

There are some great videos to watch too and are a big eye opener.

Things can change in an instant, so be prepared.

America’s Prepareathon link

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Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting 11-20-14

December 16th, 2014

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting 11-20-14

Notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

 

Next Meeting will be Thursday, December 18, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

 

Chair Rich Lopez called the meeting to order. Board members Paul Garabedian, Bobby Vrba, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Chief Chris Finn and community member Gretchen Diefenderfer were in attendance.

 

Acceptance of last meeting’s minutes was deferred until a quorum of the members present at the last meetings could approve them.

 

Chief’s Report – Chris reported that a letter from the State Auditor’s office will arrive in March while he is out of town. It is an application for a routing exemption from audit and will go to our CPA, who will email it to the Board. It needs to be printed, signed at the March Board meeting and mailed.

He also reported that we have a good truck possibility. Jim White of Brindley Mountain Fire Apparatus in Union Grove, Alabama has found a 2007 Pierce GMC for approx. $100,00, which is what we have budgeted for a new truck. It’s 22’4”, so it will fit in our barn and has only $3,324 miles on it. We would need a bigger tank, however – we want to be able to carry 500 gallons of water – and they will look into whether this conversion is feasible.

Calls – On the 18th, there was an unattended campfire, on the 1th a false alarm in Sunshine, and on the 11th a medical call at the bottom of Lickskillet. Chief Chris O’Brien of Lefthand and AMR handled the call as the vehicle blocked our access. On the 17th there was an upside down jeep down Lefthand from Ward in a driveway leaking a little gas and oil

Chris also reported that he’s talked with Bob at Astral Communications about the new audio pagers and they will be in the mail – we’ll get 10-12 this year and 10-12 next year.

Training continues – there will be a car fire training with the 3 departments on Saturday, December 13 (field trainings are the 2nd Saturday of each month).

Dave asked why we still have the old SCBAs around and Chris said it’s because we haven’t figured out how to dispose of them etc.

 

The Firefighter’s Ball is December 10th at the Inn.

 

Old Business – Training Flyer – Rich will email it to Chris who will have flyers made up. The Department is looking for new members – we need help and all are welcome. There are many ways to contribute, from actual firefighters to people willing to help organize.

 

Dry Hydrants in Lefthand – Rich has given Chris the list of people he has received approval from. Chris will set up a meeting with Ted Plank of the County Roads Department to coordinate our work with the creek work. Rich will continue to check out sites and people willing to grant access.

 

Insurance Policy – was renewed with no problems.

 

Rich thanked Rick for chairing the last meeting and Gretchen for taking the minutes, and the meeting was adjourned.

 

 

 

 

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GHFPD Board Minutes, next mtg

November 18th, 2014

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting, October 15, 2014 – Minutes by Gretchen Diefenderfer in Dave Sturtz’s absence.

Next meeting will be Thursday, November 20, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

Meeting was called to order by Rick Geesaman.  Present were Rick, Paul Garabedian, Bobby Vrba, Chief Chris Finn and community member Gretchen Diefenderfer.  Chair Rich Lopez and Secretary Dave Sturtz had approved absences.

Minutes were approved as read.

Chief’s Report – Chris reported that there was a call yesterday, but it was just that the fire alarm got pulled at the school by the Fourmile crew who were making a presentation for Fire Prevention Month.

On the 6th, there was a brush fire just up from the bottom of Lickskillet, which, thankfully, a bystander stopped and stomped it out while his girlfriend came up to Gold Hill and called it in.  Chris went down in the brush truck to find it under control.  It looked like it could have been started by a cigarette thrown out a window.  Lefthand and Fourmile showed up, too.  A fire down there has serious potential to get really bad.  Chris is trying to find the name of the bystander to thank him from all of us.

Wildland training is coming up.  We have great trainers in Boulder County and Chris encouraged anyone interested to contact him for information.

Fourmile is building a new station and losing two: the Quonset hut and Bret Gibson is selling the Lodge.  They are reorganizing and possibly will locate a truck up here.

They will be draining the brush truck for winter.  Chris is watching the forecast for when we’ll have a hard freeze.  Medical equipment and chains have been ordered for it – also 10 or 12 voice pagers are on backorder along with programming software for them so that Chris can program them himself.

Budget – The 2015 budget was the main order of business.  The Board has reviewed the proposed budget since the last meeting and Bobby moved that we approve.  Paul seconded and it passed unanimously.  The proposed budget was available to review at the Gold Hill Store and is still available by request.

IMA Meeting – Gretchen reported that Jay Stalnaker, Fire Management Officer for the Boulder County Sheriff;s Dept. will be making a presentation with maps explaining the possible locations of our next big fires at the next IMA Meeting on Oct. 23.   Several board members indicated interest and Gretchen will email them the information.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:35

Respectfully submitted, Gretchen Diefenderfer, acting secretary.

 

 

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Gold Hill Fire Protection District, Board of Directors Meeting 8-21-14

September 17th, 2014

Gold Hill Fire Protection District, Board of Directors Meeting 8-21-14

Minutes by Gretchen Diefenderfer, acting secretary in the absence of Dave Sturtz.

 

Next Meeting will be Thursday, September 18, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

 

The meeting was called to order by Chair Rich Lopez.  Also attending were Bobby Vrba, Paul Garabedian, Chief Chris Finn, and citizen Gretchen Diefenderfer, who agreed to take the minutes.  Rick Geesaman and Dave Sturtz  were out.

 

Chief’s Report  – Chris reports that he does not have the proposed budget for next year as he is waiting on information from the Assessor on our assessed valuation and tax revenue.  He’ll email it to the board when he gets the numbers.  There are 2 limits to the amount our income can go up (regardless of whether out assessed valuation goes up): the Tabor limit and the State 5% limit, which means that our income can’t rise much once it has gone down, as it did after the fire.  We have 2 mill levies – our regular mill levy and a special assessment mill levy.  Both are in the 4% range.

The big items for the budget are the dry hydrants in Lefthand and a new Fire Truck.  We have a database of all the dry hydrant locations in our district with the fitting sizes on the sun visors of the trucks.

            Calls – Chris reports no calls in the last month.

Training Reports – There are 2 regular trainings every month – the second Saturday and 4th Thursday. The last training they played with the trucks

Maintenance – The brush truck is back on line, has water, etc.   He will be ordering medical equipment for it.  Also, Old Grey, our utility truck for spotting, is getting a new paint job and will be bright yellow. When we respond to a call in Lefthand, etc., the big truck with the Jaws of Life goes first.  The brush truck is smaller and can get into places with more difficult access.  It carries 200 gal. will have medical equipment, drafts well, and has at least a 300 gpm pump.  The truck we’re looking to replace is Engine 1, with something that size, but with a bigger pump.  If we cannot locate one by next year, we’ll consider having one built for us.  We could alter an older truck and build on a used chassis.  Target date? We should have a plan in place by the end of next year.

Recruiting Poster – Chris would like to revisit this after the budget – maybe put one together at a board meeting.  We are always looking for new volunteers in many different capacities from sandwich making to trained firefighters to respond to community emergencies.  If you are interested, contact Chris at cfinn@mho.net

 

Dry Hydrants – Rich reports that he put out the word in Lefthand for spots to install them and got some good responses right away.  Lefthand Dept. put one in across from Station 1 at Glendale Gulch.  He will send an email to Chris and Ted Planck from the County Road Department with the names and addresses so that we can work their plans with ours, as they finalize their plans for the creek.  Chris added that we want to do these well – Rick Geesaman recommended that we bury a 50 gal. tank in the ground below the water table, perforated so that it will fill with water.  Then we have a readymade spot to draft from.  Boulder County standard is a 6-inch fitting.

Gretchen reported that there will be 1,650 gal. cisterns available from Jamestown that can be repurposed now that their town water system is repaired.  The County requires 1,800 gal. cisterns for fire protection.

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GHFPD Minutes of the 7-17-14 Board Meeting

August 3rd, 2014

Gold Hill Fire Protection District, Board of Directors Meeting 7/17/14 – Minutes by Gretchen Diefenderfer, acting secretary in the absence of Dave Sturtz.

Next meeting will be Thursday, August 21, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

The meeting was called to order by Chair Rich Lopez.  Attending were Rich, Rick Geesaman, Bobby Vrba, Chief Chris Finn, and citizens Paul Garabedian and Gretchen Diefenderfer, who agreed to take the minutes.

Replacement of Board Member –

The first order of business was to fill the vacancy on the board created by Donal Maloney’s leaving.  Boyd Brown had indicated to Chris and Rick that he would be willing to serve and Rick noted that he would do a fine job, Leslie Finn had said she’d serve if they couldn’t get anyone else, and Paul Garabedian was there, full of enthusiasm.  He has lived in Gold Hill for 2 years, 3 months and is married to Diane Mehsling.  They came from East Bridgewater, MA and he served on the Board of Appeals there. He owned his own business for 24 years as a builder and framer, and feels he knows how to manage money.  He wanted to do something for the town and cannot be a firefighter.  After some discussion, the board voted unanimously to confirm Paul as the newest member of the board and Rich administered the oath of office – essentially to support the Constitution of the U.S and the State of Colorado and faithfully perform the duties of the office of director!  His contact info is: 192 Dixon Road, Boulder, CO 80302 – day phone: 720-382-0089, night: 970-391-8698 – email: gara34@aol.com.  Thanks, Paul!

Minutes – Bobby moved that they approve the minutes of the last meeting, Rick seconded, and they were approved unanimously.

Chief’s Report –  

            Calls – Chris reported that our calls have been mainly abandoned, smoldering campfires on National Forest Service land in the Rocky Point area, plus one at the top of Sawmill Rd with a big hike in.  Chris’s present policy, since many of these campfires are at the end of jeep roads, which are barely jeep roads (especially since the rains of last September), is to request that the USFS be called. The USFS now has a Prevention Unit who will respond. The other option is for us to gather a crew to walk in. If a fire is fully involved, our department will have a second tone sent out and we’ll go.

He added that we are supposed to be reimbursed for fires on USFS land, but it hasn’t been happening since things changed from the Colorado Forest Service to the Colorado Dept. of Public Safety. Rick moved that the Board approve this policy, Bobby seconded and it was unanimously approved.

The brush truck is almost fixed, and will be able to make its way into more difficult to access areas.  Paul suggested that we might want to get an ATV with a small water tank to go into really difficult to access areas.  Chris added that if a campfire gets bigger, the Sheriff would be here, too, and can call for a chopper.

We also had a call for a Fire/Carbon Monoxide alarm.  Everybody needs to check for bird’s nests, etc., in vents, also check your batteries on your detectors.  Chris does not recommend unvented portable heaters.

Trainings – Bobby reported that the 3 departments (GH, Fourmile and Sunshine) had a great training with 5 engines and a Porta-pond.  Chris has 3 training officers now, Donal Maloney, Dave Sturtz, and Dave Steinmann.

Recruitment – We have a potential new guy, a Boulder County Ranger/EMT.  Some time ago we talked about a recruitment poster.  Rich will check on this – thinks Dave Sturtz may have it in his computer.

Maintenance – Bobby is putting in new windows as they become available at Resource.  Volunteers helped with weatherizing the barn doors.  Batteries have been replaced in the tender and 5433 (the new brush truck – 5431 has become a parts truck for 5433).  Tracy McConnell, x-Chief of Lyons and a CDOT mechanic is working with us now on maintenance.  The “Grey Mare” (old grey pick up) is used for spotting – there is a box with maps, binoculars, and radios in a box by the barn doors to grab when we need to check on a smoke report, etc.  Bobby will be fixing the door on the Grey Mare.

The SCBAs are due for their yearly check.  A mobile truck comes up – costs $200 for the first one and $100/unit after x 13 units.

New Truck Search – is ongoing.  Chris has brokers searching for us.  We’re looking to replace Engine 1.  We need a 4WD with a 500gpm pump, and a 500 gal. tank with CAF (compressed air foam) and it needs to be small enough to fit in our barn and get up steep, narrow driveways– not easy to find.  If we can’t finds one, we might have to increase our budget and have one built by one of the local companies.  We have $100,00 budgeted (in the bank now, since we have been saving for this).

Dry Hydrants – Chris has talked with Ted Plank, County Road guy, about the original plan for a dry hydrant above Rowena.  Since the flood, the County is working on their plan for realignment of Lefthand Creek, and will probably be able to help us with the installation in conjunction with this work, so Chris is thinking about possibly putting in 5 or 6.  Ted will let us know when the final plan is approved and work begins.  Rich will send an email to the people in Lefthand about locations/easements.

Chris also asked for help.  We had a problem on a call with a citizen who would not move a vehicle when requested to allow the Fire Truck easier access.  Rick will address this.

Budget – Chris will bring in his rough draft of the proposed budget for next year so planning can begin early on any new ideas/plans.

Other Business –

            Rest Room Alternatives –Rich checked with the County Health Department and they indicated no problem with our having a Porta-San for our occasional meetings as long as it is not open to the public (the plan is to lock it) or too close to a creek.  He will talk to Peter Swift, Chair of the Town Meeting, about this option as well as the need to move the Safesite shed, which amounts to a fire hazard because it impedes access around the back of the barn.

Dick Marchman tribute – The family has asked that contributions be made to local fire departments in his honor.  Our department will send a card – he was a highly respected volunteer firefighter and will be missed deeply.

Pancake Breakfast – Thanks to everyone. It was a big success and Leslie will be putting out a report.

Rick moved that the meeting be adjourned, Bobby seconded and it passed unanimously.

 

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Fire Department News

June 26th, 2014

There is a vacancy on the Fire Board (see report below) and they are seeking anyone interested in serving.  Rich Lopez, President of the Board, encourages anyone interested or with questions to contact him at 303-473-0204 or Rich Lopez lopez.law.office.co@gmail.com.

Notes on Gold Hill Fire Protection Board Meeting, June 19, 2014, by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next Meeting will be Thursday, July 17, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

Rich Lopez called the meeting to order.  Attendees included Rich, Rick Geesaman, Bobby Vrba, Dave Sturtz, Chief Chris Finn, and citizen Gretchen Diefenderfer.  As this is the first meeting since the election in May, which was cancelled because there were no more candidates than positions to be filled, the first order of business was to elect new officers.  And, although Donal Maloney was a candidate, when it came time to take the oath of office, he did not, reportedly realizing that he had too many obligations.  This means there is also a vacancy on the board, which will need to be filled within 60 days.  Rich agreed to serve as President again, Dave will continue as secretary, and Rick will be the new treasurer.  Chris is going to turn over the checkbook to Rick.

Dave has filed the necessary paperwork with the Colorado Department of Legal Affairs – the transparency notice, oaths of office, etc.  Minutes from the last meeting were approved.

Chief’s Report from Chief Chris Finn

            CallsMay 24, 27, and 29 there were mutual aid calls with Sunshine- smoke detectors and fire alarms.  On this kind of call, Chris reports to the barn and monitors radio traffic.  If it turns out that we are needed, he requests a second tone.  Firefighters need to also monitor and be prepared to respond if a second tone is issued.  On May 30, a smoke report turned out to be real, Shivaun Finn requested a second tone and responded along with BLM, BoCo Open Space and the Sheriff.  It was determined to be too steep to respond to in the dark.  The next day, the Sheriff turned it over to the Forest Service.  June 4 there was a kitchen fire in Sunshine, but we were called off as it was under control.  And June 8 we had a medical call at the Store.

Maintenance – June 3, Chris removed the chains on the trucks.  Today, the trim and weatherproofing of the doors and windows was all done.  Bill VanMatre from Lefthand did the work, Maja (Bret’s daughter) organized it, the Red Cross paid for it, and it all looks good.  Rich will draft a thank you letter for everyone to sign.

Yesterday, Chis ordered more pagers, last week got a new battery for Engine 4, Tuesday, fixed spray bar on Engine 1 and installed an antenna and radio in 5433 (5431 is now a parts truck).  He is looking to get Tracy to fix it 5433 all up or Chris and Bobby will do it.

Training – Six of our people attended a ropes rescue/car off the road training – block and tackle deal.   Fourmile has all the equipment and the training to use it (we have the Jaws of Life that they can use), and we would need people to take the training to use it before it makes sense to buy our own equipment.

Fire truck search – ongoing.  We want one with a 500 gal. tank, a 500 gpm pump, 4 WD, that will fit in our barn – scarce.  We have $100,00 budgeted to buy one, but may end up having to budget more and have our own built.

New Business – Rich thinks it’s important to get the word out about the vacancy on the Board and see who is interested.  He encourages anyone interested or with questions to contact him at 303-473-0204 or Rich Lopez lopez.law.office.co@gmail.com.

Restroom search – Bobby went to Ft. Carson, but the only portable restrooms available are at Ft. Riley, Kentucky.  There is now a new system – we have to fill out form 1331, get an identification code, and then can potentially access anything available in CO.  Bobby will fill out the form.  Rich will contact the Health Department to find out their rules on such things.

Chris has requested that Max move the Safesite Tuff Shed back about 10 feet to allow access around the Firebarn and level out the parking space where the metal building from the Sheriff’s Department was.

 

 

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Notes on the GHFPD Board Meeting 2-20-14

March 11th, 2014

Notes on the GHFPD Board Meeting 2-20-14 by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next Board Meeting will be Thursday, March 20, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

Rich Lopez, Chair, called the meeting to order.  Present were Donal Maloney, Bobby Vrba, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Chief Chris Finn and Gretchen Diefenderfer.  Rick Geesaman’s absence was excused due to a death in the family.

Minutes – Gretchen asked about the discussion of DOLA reported in the January minutes and it was clarified that this was about the 2014 Election.  The minutes were approved as amended.

Chief’s Report – Chris reports that he has been meeting with Donal about training, but other meetings with Bret Gibson and the General Fire Department were cancelled due to the weather.  We have had one call on 1-12-14 – a medical call in Sunshine, but we were cancelled.  He has driven all the trucks and they’re fine, checked the Jaws and chain saw also.  He’s been working with Sunshine, Fourmile, and BES looking to hire a real mechanic for maintenance.  It’s been a problem for all.   Shoveling after snowstorms is also a problem – have not been able to get people to do it, even for pay, so he and Bobby end up doing it.  The search for a new Fire truck is continuing.  We need something small enough to fit into our firebarn.  He’s still working on ID’s.

Gretchen, as DEO, and Rich have seen to posting the Call for Nominations in the Daily Camera for the Election scheduled for May, and Gretchen will post it at the Store and here at the Fire Barn as well as put out in the town email.  If we do not have more candidates than positions open, the election will be cancelled.  There are 4 positions open – everyone except Dave. Addendum 2-11-14: Rich, Rick, Donal and Bobby filled out their forms – no one else expressed interest, and the election will be cancelled.

Rich reported that he had attended the Feb.10 Town Meeting – talked up the election encouraging people to run for the Board, spoke about the possible merger of Sunshine, Fourmile, and Gold Hill Fire Departments (handing out his list of pros and cons), and was asked about the bathroom issue for the Community Center use and potential solutions.  One possibility is to borrow Fourmile’s Porta-Potti when needed – Chris will check with Bret about how that could work.  Bear Carlson was supposed to check on availability and cost for our own Porta-Potti (although where to put it is an issue).  Another possibility is to build a privy right on top of the holding tank, but Chris thinks it would interfere with drafting from our cistern.  Gretchen suggested working out an entrance in back for Community Center access.  Rich said he would check with a contractor to see what that would entail and cost.

Grants – Chris said we should be thinking about a pre-plan for what the Department needs.  We’ve successfully applied for grant money from the Assistance to Fire Fighters Fund, but it’s not certain when that will come up – it’s been April and October in the past.  Rich proposed the first discussion be at the March Board Meeting, then go to the firefighters and get their input, in order to have a plan developed by May.  There are grant-writing classes – some training might help, but we do have 2-3 people (Bear and Kris Gibson for 2, plus Chris) who have written successful grant proposals in the past.

Dave, as liaison to the Emergency Preparation Group, brought up that there has been somewhat of a perceived lack of communication expressed between the group and the fire department.  Rich stated that Deb Yeager should be invited to the next Board Meeting, March 20, to talk about how to improve communications and cooperation between us.

For official Fire Board minutes, see the GHFPD website,  goldhillfire.org

 

 

 

 

 

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Gold Hill Fire Protection District – Call for Nominations for the Board of Directors

February 19th, 2014

                  A CALL FOR NOMINATIONS

(NOTICE BY PUBLICATION OF)

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN, and, particularly, to the electors of the Gold Hill Fire Protection District of Boulder County, Colorado.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that an election will be held on the 6th day of May, 2014, between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.  At that time 3 directors will be elected to serve 4-year terms and 1 director will be elected to serve a 2 year term.  Eligible electors of the Gold Hill Fire Protection District interested in serving on the board of directors may obtain a Self-Nomination and Acceptance form from the District Designated Election Official (DEO):

Gretchen Diefenderfer

9147 Sunshine Canyon

Boulder, CO 80302

303 442 3847                      cell 303 947 9477

The Office of the DEO is open on the following days: Monday through Sunday 9 am to 8 pm.  If the DEO determines that a Self-Nomination form is not sufficient, the eligible elector who submitted the form may amend the form once, at any time, prior to 3:00 p.m. on Friday, February 28, 2014.  The deadline to submit a Self-Nomination and Acceptance is close of business on Friday, February 28, 2014 (not less than 67 days before the elections).  Earlier submittal is encouraged as the deadline will not permit curing an insufficient form.  Affidavit of Intent To Be A Write-In-Candidate forms must be submitted to the office of the designated election official by the close of business on Monday, March 3, 2014 (the sixty-fourth day before the election).

 

NOTICE IS FURTHER GIVEN, an application for a mail-in ballot shall be filed with the designated election official no later than the close of business on Friday May 2, 2014, except that, if the applicant wishes to receive the mail-in ballot by mail, the application shall be filed no later than the close of business on Tuesday, April 29, 2014.  Gold Hill Fire Protection District

Gretchen Diefenderfer, Designated Election Official

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GHFPD Board Meeting – 2-20-14

February 18th, 2014

The Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meetings are held the third Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

Rich Lopez, Chair of the Gold Hill FPD Board, came to our last Town Meeting, Feb. 10, and reported on a meeting he attended about the possible merger of the Sunshine, Fourmile, and Gold Hill departments.  He is also recruiting for the Fire Board.  Elections are in May and he reported that some board members are ready to step down, so the Board is looking for some good people to serve.

Here are his notes on the merger meeting

Greatest Concern/Worry for your Dept?  (presently)

Inadequate Response

Duplication – Costs, Time, Effort

Burnout of Key Players – real concern

Volunteer Retention – Recruitment

Sustainability

Aging Residential Base/Demographics

Aging Fleet/Equipment

Unfunded Mandates

Resiliency – Large Incidents

Economy of Scale

Increasing: Demands, Complexities

Risk Exposure

Euipment/Age/Maintenance

Training – just enough

Opportunity

Greatest Hope/Vision w/Consolidation

         Ability to improve ISO Rating

Replace Aging Fleet

Decreased Response Times

Increased Response Capability

Increased Political Power/Influence

Unified Training & Ewuipment

Reduced Redundancy

Increased Efficiency

Dispatch Opportunities

Biggest Fear w/Cnsolidation

         Changing Culture

Loss of Identity – FF

Loss of Role/Responsibility

Increased Responsibility

Increased Standards/Expectations

And here is the list of attendees

Attendees

 

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GHFPD Board Meeting 9-19-13 notes

October 14th, 2013

Gold Hill FPD Board Meeting 9-19-13,  notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next Fire Board Meeting will be Thursday, 10- 17-13, 7:00 pm at the Community Center

Present were President Donal Maloney, Rick Geesaman, Bobby Vrba, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Rich Lopez by phone, and citizens Tony Vrba and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Donal called the meeting to order and called role.  The minutes of the last meeting were emailed, but had not been read – Dave read them aloud, and they were approved as read.

Public Input: Gretchen expressed the opinion that the Fire Board has a duty to communicate to the community and that they had said that the minutes would be posted on the FD website (goldhillfire.org).  They aren’t posted nor has she, as someone on the email list, received them.  Dave apologized and said he would see to it.  Donal reaffirmed that it is the duty to communicate effectively with the community and said the board needs to keep an eye on this.

Tony Vrba reported that, as the new Member-at-Large of the Town Meeting, she plans to attend FB meetings.  She stated that she believes it is part of her job to help improve communications because it’s important for everybody to work together.

OLD BUSINESS

Rich reported that the original site chosen for the dry hydrant had washed away in the flood, but that he has met with the Lefthand Chief , Russ Leadingham, and they have found a better site on the other side of the bridge downstream.  He will pursue this once the debris piles have been cleared.

The Debit card proposal for our Chief was deferred until Chris is present.

NEW BUSINESS

Donal asked if there any big anticipated fiscal impacts from the flood for us.  Only normal truck repairs were reported.

Rich asked about any planning to improve communication in the future, since our communications were hampered by the electricity being out.  What about Hughesnet?  A temporaty cell phone repeater?  Donal thought this issue might come up at the Chief’s Meeting with the Sheriff (which is where Chief Finn is right now).  Dave Sturtz is a Hamm radio operator and part of MERN, but isn’t sure what Joe Citizen can do.  Donal thinks this is a priority item to work on.  AT&T cell phones work at the corner of the Bluebird Lodge, but not Verizon.  Small Chinese radios as well as emergency phones around the district were brought up.  Bobby said that the Safe Site organization was also hampered by communications being down, but only 1 or 2 people came up and it got handled.

As far as our overall Flood Response, the board needs the Chief to do a debriefing and bring any issues to the Board.  The Gold Hill Firefighters put in a lot of hours during the crisis and the departments are all operating outside district lines because of many departments inability to get to areas in their districts.

 

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July 16th, 2013

All,

 

As of 1400, today, July 16, 2013 the current fire ban in Boulder County will be rescinded. See attached press release for further details. Contact The USFS for information in reference to their current restrictions.

 

Jay C Stalnacker

Boulder County Sheriff’s Office

Fire Management Officer / SWAT

 

WORKING Media Release Rescind

 

 

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GHFPD Board Meeting

July 16th, 2013

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board meeting, June 20, 2013

Notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next meeting will be Thursday, July 18, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

 

The meeting was called to order by President Donal Maloney.  Present were Secretary Dave Sturtz, Board Members Rich Lopez and Bobby Vrba, Chief Chris Finn, and resident Gretchen Diefenderfer.

OLD BUSINESS

Rich reported that the easement agreement for the subdivision cistern would be signed by the end of the week.

Also, he has sent a letter to the Smiths, who own the property where they’re thinking of putting in a dry hydrant, about the potential project.

NEW BUSINESS

Donal reported that there is a Fire Department Facebook page, which Adriana owns (from the time she was on the Board and working on the website, etc.) and the FD doesn’t have access to it.  Rich volunteered to talk to Adriana.  (Update, it’s been taken down now).

Dave reported that there are new firefighters who have gone through training and are certified, but have no pagers or gear.  Chris said they just need to call him or Leslie.  Donal added that they do look for a bonafide commitment.

CHIEF’S CORNER

Chris reported that they received the first part of the order under the SCBA Grant, got the bill and paid it, and have just received the rest of the masks.

They also got 1/3 of the Wildland Grant and have put in an order.  However, they will give us 3 shelters, so really we got more than 1/3.   Also asked for fittings/adapters.  The grant is through the CO Dept. of Public Safety now (used to be CSFS).

The brush truck is dead right now.  The plan is to make one good truck from two.  A former fire chief from Lyons named Tracy will work on it.  Donal added that it’s worth spending some money on.

While weed whacking around the barn, Chris found the gas can for the generator that belongs to the Safelink folks.  It needs to be located in a safer place – Dave said that Amy will take care of it and the shed has a combo lock.  She will email the combo.

Shivaun is handling the Red Cards (actually IQS cards and are no longer red).  This will enable firefighters to be on a crew after the first day (when we automatically go) and get paid.  There will be a bunch of paperwork.

The transparency notice on the website is not up to date.  Donal will send Dave another copy and Dave will update.  Chris has pictures, etc., he’d like on it – some are on dropbox and he will put more on.

Regarding Firebarn repairs, gutters and windows are on the list as well as the electrical work.  Dick Cole is watching Resource.  They’ll start with the locker room and slowly seal up the place.  Before the electrical work can be done, there is a cabinet in the way that needs to come out and there is a window behind it that will be nice to have exposed.  Bobby volunteered to do this.  The plan is to get more steel shelves to replace the cupboard.

Dave Hurley from Sunshine donated a pressure washer.  Bobby will take it from Dave’s house and make sure it’s working.  It’s gas fired.

If these planned repairs/renovations go over $1,000, Chris will bring them to the Board. Rich moved that we authorize the Chief to spend up to $1,000 on these repairs.  Bobby seconded and it passed.

Some work also needs to be done on the siding – screwing them in where they’re coming loose.  He’s thinking there might be a teenager looking for work who would be good to do this.

Dave suggested designating some Saturday a.m. for a workday and putting out the word for volunteers to help with these projects.

Donal inquired about what’s in the budget for maintenance in general – Chris reported that we have $4,000 budgeted for the station, $5,000 for the trucks, $1500 for equipment, and $1000 for radios.

We also anticipate spending some money on a speaker/siren for Engine 4.

Chris wondered about the class with our lawyer, Dick Lyons, that the board talked about earlier on legal concerns and just generally how the board should operate – probably 2-3 hours.  Rich thought it would be a good idea sooner rather than later, now that the board has settled into it’s 5 present members.  Donal said that he’s willing to come up here. He’ll check with Dick about times and send emails to the Board before the next meeting.

Chris would also like 5, 10 year plans, etc.

Chris pointed out that we’re heading into hard-core fire season.

Donal brought up the stabbing in Nederland and reminded everyone to approach all calls with caution, especially if violence is suspected.

 

And, last, but not least – Don’t forget the Pancake breakfast on the 4th.

 

 

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GHFPD Thanks to All!

July 4th, 2013
Once again our surrounding communities came together to help support our tiny mountain fire department.  Once again it was a huge success.  By the numbers; 503 people served; $890 collected in the boots; $464 from t-shirts that will be sent to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation to support the families of the 19 firefighters lost in Arizona.  We cannot thank all of you folks enough!  Proceeds from the Gold Hill Fire Protection District’s 4th of July Pancake Breakfast are used for the purchase of equipment for firefighters. Thank you to everyone who worked so hard to make this event a success.  We could not do it without our dedicated volunteers.
Leslie Finn  <lesliefinn@yahoo.com>
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GHFPD Board meeting 5-16-13 – report

June 19th, 2013

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting, May 16, 2013

Notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next Board Meeting is Thursday, June 20, 2013, 7:00 at the Community Center

Present were President Donal Maloney, Secretary Dave Sturtz, board members Rick Geesaman, Rich Lopez, and Bobby Vrba, and community member Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Donal opened the meeting with a tribute to Dave Nyquist, who died on May 15th.  He was a long-term Chief in Lefthand and continued to be very active on the Boulder County Incident Management Team, both locally and regionally.  He was very competent, well regarded, and always more than willing to teach.  Donal spoke of his appreciation for his personal experiences with Dave as well as Chris Finn’s, who told Donal that our best tribute would be to pass on our own knowledge and experience.

Minutes of the last meeting were not distributed.  Dave will email them and Rich made a motion that they be approved by email. The motion was approved.

CITIZEN TIME

Gretchen reported that the bigger metal address signs down Sunshine cost around $675 for 100, plus the posts at around 2.50 apiece.  One thought is to get the smaller green plastic ones from the County for all who do not have them within the town limits.  They are free and, being smaller, would minimize sign pollution in our close quarters. There are many missing signs and no consistent location for them.  Then, we could purchase the larger metal ones for the rest of our district.  The discussion centered on figuring out how many we would need and Dave Sturtz volunteered to help Gretchen.  They will look to get up-to-date maps and come up with a good estimate of the numbers needed and the cost.  Gretchen’s idea is that the FD and the Town Meeting could share the cost.  Good signage would be a big help in any emergency and a benefit for all.

OLD BUSINESS

Rich has written a letter to 2 property owners in the Rowena area where we are considering installing a dry hydrant.  They will be here this summer and he will continue to communicate with them about this.

Re: the Cistern in the subdivision: It went in originally with the permission of the property owners, the Giffin’s, sometime in the 90’s. We maintain it and fill it, typically with water from Lefthand.  The property now belongs to Sue Kidder and Paul Roberts who are moving to the Philippines this summer.  They have a draft agreement for a legal easement from the FD’s lawyer, Dick Lyons, but no agreement has been finalized.  Rich will pursue this.

NEW BUSINESS

Donal reported that they have $2000 budgeted for station repairs.  He got a list of things that need to be done – conduit, etc. – from the electrician who did the work when they put in the exhaust system.  Donal will bring in the list to the board, and have the electrician submit a bid.

Donal also reported on our readiness as a department for the upcoming fire season.  Steffi Wilson and Marielle Sidell have completed the Wildland Fire Fighter course and others did a refresher.  They will be doing more training and making sure the trucks are ready.  Dave Sturtz offered to help with the trucks.  Donal says they have a pretty good number of certified Wildland Firefighters – 12.  They are always recruiting firefighters as well as medical responders.  And they’re coming into good weather and will be doing more training with water.

Rich had questions about the fire danger rating signs – they are provided by the USFS and changed daily by the fire departments.

Rick wondered if the County would be providing the lightening locating software this year – Chris will probably know soon.  It was awesome, but quite expensive.i

Dave Sturtz reported that Amy is running the Emergency Preparedness group for Gold Hill and Dave, as a ham radio operator, attended the last meeting and offered to be the FD liaison to the group.   All approved.

Donal reported that the Chief has been training everyone on the new SCBAs and they are now on the trucks and operational.  They have lots of bells & whistles compared to the old ones, they weigh less, and are more comfortable.

Gretchen mentioned that she had not requested reimbursement for her EMT recertification as a donation to the FD, and the board thanked her.

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Fire Ban

June 11th, 2013

All,

Please see attached information on forthcoming Fire Ban in Boulder County. Pending final Sheriff’s signature this afternoon this will be enacted 12:00 Wednesday, June 12, 2013.

 

Jay C Stalnacker

Boulder County Sheriff’s Office

Fire Mangement Officer / SWAT

Fire Ban

 

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Burn Regulations

May 15th, 2013

Burn regs

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GHFPD Board Meeting 4/18/13

May 13th, 2013

Notes on the Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting 4/18/13. 

By Gretchen Diefenderfer

 

Next Meeting is Thursday, May 16, 2013, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

 

Present were President Donal Maloney, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Board Members Rick Geesaman, Bobby Vrba, and Rich Lopez, plus community member Gretchen Diefenderfer.

 

Donal reported on an explosion yesterday (April 17) in West, Texas, and the death of 5 volunteer firefighters.  Approximately ¾ of the firefighters in this country are volunteers.  This is Bobby’s hometown and 2 of his second cousins have not been heard from.  This past Saturday, several of our volunteers participated in the annual refresher – safety is a big component of all our training.

 

The minutes were approved as sent out.

 

Public Time

Gretchen reported on the new reflective green metal signs in Sunshine. Volunteers put together an excel sheet to determine how many they needed – single signs, multiple signs, etc. and their CWPP group purchased the metal signs and the numbers, assembled them and have been putting them up. They cost between $3,000 and $3,500. She asked about the FD maps and Chris said they’re 10 years old.  Donal estimated that we have between 250 – 300 structures in the district.  He suggested we look at our options: the cost and the people to carry the project.  Gretchen will do some more research and report back.  Sunshine would like to see good addressing spread like a virus.  At the last Town Meeting, people were interested also.

 

OLD BUSINESS

Chris reported that his #1 question is the long-standing need for a legal easement for the 12,000 gal. cistern in the subdivision.  It’s now been in the works for several years and Chris thinks it’s very important to get it settled.  Rich volunteered to look into it.

Chris also pointed out that our copy of the Exemption from Audit that was signed at the last meeting needs to be filed in the office in the Budget file.

He also reported that Leslie is still signing the checks and the Board needs to fill out the paperwork to sign on the account.  Dave moved that all Board members be signers, Rich seconded and all voted aye.  Chris will take a signed copy of the motion to the Vectra Bank on 17th & Pearl to get the process moving.

The question was raised that the current transparency notice needs to be posted on the website.  Donal has the terms from the lawyer, and it can be finished up.

Rich looked into the dry hydrant site in Lefthand.  It seems shallow and would need to be deepened, but Chris says it is the best place to pull a fire truck off.  Rich knows the owners and they are here in the summer.  All thought it would be a desirable thing for the property owners to have a fixed dry hydrant close to them and would hopefully be well received.   It was decided to proceed and talk to the owners.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Donal was pleased to report that the board is meeting with the full complement of 5 members for the first time and it’s important because Chris needs a functioning board.  Rich suggested that if someone is out of town, they could have phone participation if needed.

 

CHIEF’S TIME

Chris reports that they have received most of the new SCBAs – they came with medium masks only and some hoses are missing.  Other sized masks and the missing hoses have been ordered.   The masks will be hanging in bags with the bunker gear and 1-2 spares will be in the truck.  They will go into service as soon as possible.  First the firefighters have to watch 2 short movies, take a test (takes only 15-20 minutes) and do training – contact Chris or Donal for info.  The new 60minute bottles (vs. the old 30-min. ones) are a huge advance for the department.

Chris has applied for a VFA grant for new wildland gear.  Our share of the cost will be 50%.  There have been some changes – he used to work with Allen Owen of the CSFS and now it’s the Colo. Dept. of Public Safety.

As of right now Steffi is in the First Responders class and Steffi and Marielle are beginning the Wildland class.

4th of July is coming up and they are always looking for help.

The Red equipment bags are all in the locker room stacked in the back – Chris reminded the firefighters that the floor is for walking on.

Motion to adjourn carried.

 

 

 

 

 

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Understanding and Preparing for Wildfire

May 12th, 2013

Wildfire, Wildlands, and People: Understanding and Preparing for Wildfire in the Wildland-Urban Interface

http://www.fs.fed.us/openspace/fote/reports/GTR-299.pdf

Great publication from the USFS about the Wildland Urban Interface (where we live!)  From Luke Finn

 

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Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board meeting, March 21, 2013

April 7th, 2013

Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board meeting, March 21, 2013

Notes by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next meeting will be Thursday, April 18th, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

The meeting was called to order by President Donal Maloney.  Present were board members Donal, Bobby Vrba and Dave Sturtz, and residents Rich Lopez and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Donal offered a public apology for the missed meetings due to lack of a quorum and encouraged everyone to be aware of the schedule in order to attend whenever possible.

The January minutes were approved as published.

Public Comment Period – Gretchen brought up the new address signs in Sunshine Canyon and suggested that we, the town and/or the fire department, look into getting and installing signs in our district.  Many residences have no visible numbers, which can be a problem, particularly in an emergency response situation.  She volunteered to find out about the county signs and the signs in Sunshine and bring the info back to the next meeting.

Agenda – Donal asked about old business and no one had any.

New Business – On his list, Donal  had the exemption from audit paperwork, the SCBA grant info, and strategic planning.  He also offered an official apology to Rich Lopez for how long it’s taken to get him on the Board.  He, Donal, missed 2 meetings due to what he called the need for spontaneous parenting, plus Rick was called out of town on short notice, and they have been short board members to start with.  He encouraged everyone to make every effort to make the regularly scheduled, 3rd Thursday of the month meetings

As far as appointing new members, the board members have the option to talk to a candidate and vote to appoint the person they decide on.  Recently they have tried to spread out the representation geographically and Rich lives in Lefthand, so that was one consideration.  Dave moved that they appoint Rich Lopez, and Bobby seconded.  Donal asked for discussion and Gretchen said she thinks it’s a great idea.   She served on the Community Foundation Committee after the Fourmile Fire with Rich and he was wonderful.  Donal added that they really need his expertise, having served on several boards.

Donal administered the oath of office, which basically amounts to swearing to support the constitution of the U.S., the State of CO, and to faithfully perform the duties of office, and gave Rich the floor.  Rich reported that since they moved up here 7 years ago, they have met a lot of people.  and “It’s our community”.  Serving on the Wildfire relief fund committee, he learned quite a bit about the fire departments.  And he has spent a lot of time on boards, including the Boulder City Council, the Denver Foundation Board, and the Boulder Community Hospital board.  He plans to learn a lot on this board.

Donal reported that a year and a half ago, the board was chaotic and there were a lot of resignations.  His goal is to establish a functional, stable board and when they come to consensus, he hopes the board members will be able to respectfully disagree and still accept decisions they might not agree with.   In terms of process, the aim is to learn to dot the I’s and cross the T’s.  Rich volunteered that, if people on the board all want what’s best for the organization, decisions should be good decisions.

Donal reported that he wants to see the board make strategic plans for the next year and then the next 2, 5 and maybe 10 years – to make a little more of a written plan/guiding document.  For this year, they plan to install at least 1 dry hydrant in Lefthand, possibly 2.  The priority is to have one near Rowena – the area of densest population.

They are also looking to replace at least one and maybe 2 of the old trucks in the next few years, and to take care of some needed maintenance on the building, including some electrical concerns (replacing Romex with conduit and upgrading boxes).

Rich commented that it would be advisable to take care of immediate needs first.  He suggested that facilitators can help with long term visioning (they helped BCH a lot) and there might be free resources available.

Donal added that the aim is that with planning they will be less reactive.  They also need officer development and succession planning.  He commented that after the 2010 fire he’s not sure he has another one of those in him, and Chris has been Chief for something like 16 years, so he will want to retire at some point, too.

Exemption from Audit – Everyone needs to sign the form and then get it to the Department of Local Governments.

SCBA – They got the $85,000 grant and Gold Hill had to kick in $5,000.  Chris got proposals from 2 or 3 places – Front Range is probably the best.  Per the grant they need to get 13 sets, plus individual masks for each firefighter, voice amplifiers and 60 minute bottles.  They decided the more air the better, especially if they need to go in and rescue people.  They should be delivered within the next 2 months and then everyone will get trained.  Regarding grants, Donal got an email from Kris Gibson – she and Bear are very motivated to write more grants since they got this SCBA one.  Kris might make a presentation at the next Board Meeting.

Another goal is for each board member to oversee a specific area of the department – like grants, building maintenance, etc.  The chief is in charge of operations and the Board is in charge of the infrastructure, budget, etc.

Rich asked about the site characteristics needed for the dry hydrant, which are easy access, in or near Rowena.  In particular, they want to be able to support fighting a potential structure fire in the Rowena area.   Donal will get with Max Yeager to look at ideas.

 

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Gold Hill Fire Board Meeting

January 16th, 2013

The next Fire Board Meeting is Thursday, January 17th, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

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Fire Board Meeting 12-3-12

December 1st, 2012

Notes  on the Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting, 11-15-12

By Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next meeting, Monday, December 3, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

Present were board members Donal Maloney, President, Dave Sturtz, Secretary, Rick Geesaman, Chief Chris Finn, and community members Bobbie Vrba and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Donal announced that they need to appoint a new board member within 60 days of Adriana’s resignation so they will need to meet early in December – they decided on Dec. 3.  They will publish and post notices as required.  The budget has to be in by the 15th, so if anything further needs to be done, they can take care of that, too.  Dave moved they meet on the 3rd, Rick seconded, and it passed.

Chris presented the budget and reported that the big balance of $60,000 in the income section of the budget would be moved from the bank account to the budget to hopefully purchase a new/used fire truck, plus another $5,000 to meet the required match for the SCBA grant.  We are getting there on the age of the trucks and Chris has been looking for another quick attack truck, which would carry enough water and have a 500 gpm pump, to be quick enough and small enough to get into places like Gretchen’s house (!).  We have to budget any money we intend to spend, or we’re not allowed to spend it without submitting a new budget per rules & regs.

Donal brought up the retirement fund and the board expressed interest in beginning to look at what’s required in January 2013. It’s a good deal – the state matches any money we put in.   The new board took charge in May and Donal wants to see it working toward strategic planning for a few years out.

Chris said there is quite a bit of work needed on the barn to think about.  Gretchen brought up that the Town Meeting voted to repaint the floor of the Community Center (which Michael Albes painted in the early 70s and hasn’t been done since), if that’s ok with the board.  The board requested that the GHTM bring a proposal for approval

Donal brought up the idea of a dry hydrant down in Lefthand Creek near Rowena to provide a water supply down there.  The board voted to budget an additional $5,000 from the bank account for this project.

They then went over the amounts in the various categories.  The budget resolution requires 2 signatures.  Chris will print up the amended budget, get the signatures, and submit it to the County Commissioners

He explained that we have 2 mill levies: one is the general operating fund which is subject to Tabor and so ratcheted down with the decreased valuation after the fire, and the other is a special fund which did not.  The CPA works out the exact figures and submits the required budget to the State.

Rick moved that they adopt the budget and it passed 3-0.

With that, the meeting adjourned.

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Fire Board notes 11-15-12

December 1st, 2012

Notes  on the Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board Meeting, 11-15-12

By Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next meeting, Monday, December 3, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

Present were board members Donal Maloney, President, Dave Sturtz, Secretary, Rick Geesaman, Chief Chris Finn, and community members Bobbie Vrba and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Donal announced that they need to appoint a new board member within 60 days of Adriana’s resignation so they will need to meet early in December – they decided on Dec. 3.  They will publish and post notices as required.  The budget has to be in by the 15th, so if anything further needs to be done, they can take care of that, too.  Dave moved they meet on the 3rd, Rick seconded, and it passed.

Chris presented the budget and reported that the big balance of $60,000 in the income section of the budget would be moved from the bank account to the budget to hopefully purchase a new/used fire truck, plus another $5,000 to meet the required match for the SCBA grant.  We are getting there on the age of the trucks and Chris has been looking for another quick attack truck, which would carry enough water and have a 500 gpm pump, to be quick enough and small enough to get into places like Gretchen’s house (!).  We have to budget any money we intend to spend, or we’re not allowed to spend it without submitting a new budget per rules & regs.

Donal brought up the retirement fund and the board expressed interest in beginning to look at what’s required in January 2013. It’s a good deal – the state matches any money we put in.   The new board took charge in May and Donal wants to see it working toward strategic planning for a few years out.

Chris said there is quite a bit of work needed on the barn to think about.  Gretchen brought up that the Town Meeting voted to repaint the floor of the Community Center (which Michael Albes painted in the early 70s and hasn’t been done since), if that’s ok with the board.  The board requested that the GHTM bring a proposal for approval

Donal brought up the idea of a dry hydrant down in Lefthand Creek near Rowena to provide a water supply down there.  The board voted to budget an additional $5,000 from the bank account for this project.

They then went over the amounts in the various categories.  The budget resolution requires 2 signatures.  Chris will print up the amended budget, get the signatures, and submit it to the County Commissioners

He explained that we have 2 mill levies: one is the general operating fund which is subject to Tabor and so ratcheted down with the decreased valuation after the fire, and the other is a special fund which did not.  The CPA works out the exact figures and submits the required budget to the State.

Rick moved that they adopt the budget and it passed 3-0.

With that, the meeting adjourned.

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Fire Board Meeting 9-20-2012

October 14th, 2012

Notes on the September 20, 2012 Gold Hill Fire Protection District Board meeting

By Gretchen Diefenderfer.  For the official minutes, contact Dave Sturtz, Secretary,  at dave@sturtz.org.

 

NEXT FIREBOARD MEETING will be Thursday, October 18th, 2010, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center.

 

The meeting was called to order by President Donal Maloney.  Present were Donal, Dave Sturtz, Rick Geesaman, Chief Chris Finn, and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

 

Minutes of the last meeting were approved.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

Cistern Easement  – is at the attorney’s office per suggestions in the language by Paul Robert’s attorney.

 

Board Training – They are looking at mid October.  The attorney will look at dates and get back to the board.

 

Banking – Chris has emailed the info on the account signers and hasn’t heard back from Adriana.  Donal will email her to remind her to get the information to Chris so he can get it to the bank.

 

Website – Dave has worked some on it (http://www.goldhillfire.org/).  It has the transparency notice on it although not much else.  He’ll keep plugging away on it.  The site that Adriana registered (http://goldhillfire.com/) still has some Word Press stuff on it and he has asked her to take it down.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Budget Process – It’s up and coming.  The board will be working on it for the next couple of months.  Chris will give the board spread sheets with their basic income – tax money, grant money and donations, as well as expenses for the last couple of years.  They budget high so if they get additional money so they can spend or save it without going through a re-budgeting process with the State.  He has to get ahold of DOLA.  The tax base went down and because of Tabor, etc., and the State 5% rule, our mill levy, which was 7.499 has been adjusted down to 7.47.  The tax base was ratcheted down because of the fire and once it goes down, it can’t go up without a vote.

 

Chris puts the basic budget together for the board to work on, but he would like more input from the board.  The building needs a fair amount of work.

 

Grant – Kris Gibson will get the figures on the SCBA Grant and our required match.

 

Melodrama – He has heard from Maggie that they will getting donations from the Melodrama performance.

 

Training – There was a good training last week on pumps and some motivated new trainees.  They really need everyone to show up for at least ½ of the trainings.  Calls are a team effort and it helps to have trained together.

 

Google Calendar – Dave Sturtz will set up a Google Calendar and put a link on the website to it. Trainings are the 4th Thursday (classroom training in the evening) and the second Saturday  (hands on training in the daytime) of each month.  The email list should also be working now.

 

Chris added that there will be a change in the training schedule in November – car fire and extrication training will be on Nov. 29th.

 

They have a new chief in Sunshine – Steve Waltman – he is actually a rocket. scientist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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GHFB Meeting notes from 8-16-12

September 19th, 2012

Notes on the Gold Hill Fire Board Meeting of August 16, 2012 by Gretchen Diefenderfer

Next Fire Board Meeting will be Thursday, September 20, 2012, 7:00 p.m. at the Community Center

Before the meeting began, Donal said that emergency preparedness, community welfare and cooperation are important and we’re all in this together, but he has not put Amy and the Safelink on the agenda because of legality and liability concerns.  As soon as those are cleared up, he will put her on the agenda.

Present at the meeting: President Donal Maloney, Treasurer Gary Siemer, Secretary Dave Sturtz, Board members Adriana Galue and Rick Geesaman, Chief Chris Finn, and citizens John Sand, Amy Hardy, Jack Laughlin, Deb Yeager and Gretchen Diefenderfer.

Amy took the citizens comment time at the beginning of the meeting to speak about Safelink, which is a combination of Neighborlink (the phone tree system, etc., we’ve set up in case of emergencies) and Safe House (places up here that evacuated people, especially from other districts, can come up to for shelter, information, and help particularly in floods, but also in any emergency).  She is excited to have this coming together – mountain people would like to stay in the mountains in emergencies.  The Mountain Mayors Group has been working with Mike Chard of the Office of Emergency Management and he has obtained a grant for Gold Hill, Sunshine, and Ward for TuffSheds to hold equipment and supplies for temporary evacuation situations.  All the communities are working to set up cooperative arrangements with their Fire Departments. Given our situation on top of the hill from Fourmile, Sunshine, and Lefthand, there will be people stuck in the mountains.  There are signs posted saying, “Climb to Safety in case of Flash Flood” and that means here.  So we have these TuffSheds and Ham Radio systems (MERN = Mountain Emergency Radio Network) for when the electricity goes, as well as a generator.

We would prefer to work with our Fire Department.  The Safelink organization is under the Gold Hill Town Meeting.  Brett Gibson and the Fourmile FD gave us $200 as seed money for our needs, so we have a separate fund under the GHTM to hold and disburse these funds.

Safelink is not location dependent.  We have 20 local houses volunteered and are working with the GH School as a central location to gather.  This is citizens supporting citizens.  She is asking the FD for help with communication.  It would be great to have a meeting of the Safelink volunteers and the FD to establish a working relationship.  She would like somebody, a seasoned firefighter or Chris, as Chief, to come to 1 or 2 meetings and go over communications, possible scenarios.

Chris interjected that, as a governmental entity, the Fire Department could be legally liable if “affiliated” with Safelink.  For instance, the FD could be construed as having to cover people for workman’s comp.

Hopefully Mike Chard is working on the legalities of all this.

Donal added that when these legalities are worked out with Mike Chard it would be fine for Safelink to make a formal presentation to the Fire Board.  He doesn’t see a viable, supportable option right now.

Much conversation ensued.  John Sand encouraged the Fire Board to say, “Yes, we can work this out.  It’s too important to get lost in bureaucracy.”  Jack also encouraged them to make the fits work within the necessary defined liability limits.

Amy is working to set up a meeting with Mike Chard.  Dave Sturtz offered to be a liaison.  He believes in this stuff, also has a Ham Radio license and would come to a meeting.

OLD BUSINESS

Website update – Adriana announced that she decided just today to pull out because there have been too many roadblocks to her reactivating it.  She has not had access to the domain, etc., and only 3 days ago got administrative permission.  She found herself frustrated and burned out and unable to get her creative process together in the face of seeming mistrust and restrictions.  She would rather forego the money at this point.

Donal suggested that the board override the previous decision to pay her for her work.  After some discussion, the new plan is that Chris is in charge of the website and he delegated Dave Sturtz.  Dave will work on it (see http://www.goldhillfire.org/).  He said he may get stymied and have to hire somebody.  Matt Sturtz has been working to reinstate the email list.  Adriana was told to submit an invoice for her out of pocket expenses which she did 2 months ago and again today.  Gary will go to the bank and get his signing on the account straightened out.

Board Training – Donal will contact the lawyer and get 2 or 3 nights that the he is available to come up here in the next month or so, and then email the board members to see what works.

CHIEF’S TIME

Chris stated that they need to fix the apron on Bay 3.  He brought it up before, but it was not officially approved by the board.  There is a big old hole they have to drive over.  Donal thought that, if it is in the budget, Chris could just do it.  Chris pointed out that the previous agreement between the board and the chief is that expenditures over $400-$500 need approval of the board.  The new apron will cost $1800.  Dave made a motion that Chris be authorized to get the bay repaired for no more than $2000.  Rick seconded it and it passed.

In September the budgeting process for the next year begins.  Chris puts together the basic budget and brings it to the board.  He will email the old budget out.  The board then officially accepts the budget and then it goes through the legal channels.

NEW BUSINESS

 Treasurer’s Role and Responsibilities – they need to get Gary set up and need to get 3-4 signers on the account.  Chris reported that they will need an official motion from the board to take to the bank.  Donal moved that the District accounts at Vectra Bank of CO be changed and the following 4 people be officially designated as signers on the account: William D. Sturtz, Gary Siemer, Richard Geesaman, and Adriana Galue.  Dave seconded and it was approved.  The plan is that Gary will go to the bank on Thursday and find out the process – does everyone need to go or can he bring a signature card up, or what.

Adriana had questions as a new member of the board about their fiduciary responsibilities.  Who signs checks, who keeps the books, etc.?   Chris reported that invoices and bank statements come in, he reviews the invoices and authorizes payment.  Kathleen is the bookkeeper and she cuts the checks and has been bringing them to Leslie to sign since she is still a signer on the account and Gary isn’t.  The bank statements Kathleen reviews and balances.  They have not required double signatures on the checks.  Present signers are Leslie, Dave, and Darrell McConell.  Adriana wanted to know the right process to see and review statements retroactively.  Kathleen has the current ones and old ones are in the files in the firebarn office.  Chris also has access to the new ones online.

Gary, as soon as he is officially a signer, will confer with Kathleen, get the financial statements and give treasurer’s reports to the board.

The meeting adjourned at 8:00.

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