By Carl Butz
LOYALTON – This past Tuesday, May 17, the sky was cloudless when the Sierra County Board of Supervisors assembled for an amiable meeting at the Social Hall in Loyalton. The weather outside may have brightened their mood, but Supervisor LeBlanc’s report on the very successful return of Timberfest to Loyalton over the weekend definitely set a positive tone for the session.
Yes, Timberfest brought out a good, loud crowd who enjoyed the traditional truck parade, the competitive events, and the food available at the event. Being a big success, LeBlanc said plans are already at work to expand Timberfest into a two-day function next year.
As for the regular US Forest Service reports on activities affecting Sierra County, Rachel Hutchinson, Acting Sierraville District Ranger, pleased the Supervisors when reporting the problems with opening campgrounds at Jackson Meadows this summer have been ironed out with the Nevada Irrigation District (NID) and these facilities should be available to the public by mid-June.
The Board also was happy to support the drafting of a letter to the USFS by Tim Beals concerning Sierra County’s priorities for the use of new fire fuel reduction funding coming to the federal agency this year. Tim Beals listed five “shovel ready” projects to include in the letter: 1) completion of the North Yuba Project; 2) implementation of the 1,200 acre Greene Acres Project; 3) realization of the long-standing, but dormant Forest City Management Plan; 4) partnering with the “dubious” Caltrans Fire Fuel Treatment project along state highway corridors snaking through the county; and 5) treating fuel build-ups along most Sierra County roads, an effort he estimated would cost between $400K and $750K. Supervisor Roen added a sixth priority: addressing the overgrown wildland-urban-interfaces (WUIs) surrounding every single community on the westside of Sierra County.
The Board also had no problem supporting Tim Beals’ request for authorization to hire temporary help for the Building and Planning Departments after Beals noted the inability to fill a long-standing vacancy, a new retirement, a staff member on leave after a serious medical emergency, and an outbreak of Covid cases meant he has only two people able to work in his office at the moment.
Upon finding the Sierra Brooks Water Ordinance could not be adopted until written notice was published and the document comprised 17 pages, they decided to pass the ordinance after shorter summary of the document could be printed instead of subsidizing this newspaper with taxpayers money.