FIRE RESTRICTIONS: - Fire Season in effect as of June 1, 2018 @12:01 a.m.
MH1 and MH4 IFPL: - IFPL 1 as of June 1, 2018 @12:01 a.m.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Drying fuel conditions prompts fire season for Department of Forestry lands in Central Oregon District

[Prineville, Ore.] Oregon Department of Forestry’s (ODF) Central Oregon District (COD) will enter fire season at 12:01 am on June 1, 2018.  Fuel conditions and drier/warmer long term weather forecasts prompted the declaration.  “Across the District spring has brought limited rainfall and right now we are seeing fuel conditions drier than they were at this time last year,” states District Forester Mike Shaw.  “Last week’s rain was really localized, with very little soaking in due to how quickly it came down in many areas.”
With the implementation of fire season, logging and other industrial operations must meet requirements for fire prevention, such as fire tools, water supply, and watchman service when those operations are occurring on lands protected by ODF.  In addition to fire season restrictions Industrial Fire Precaution Level 1 (IFPL) will be in effect for lands protected by ODF in Hood River and Wasco counties.  Details for fire season and IFPL requirements are available at www.oregon.gov/ODF/Fire/pages/FirePrevention.aspx, or contact your local stewardship forester for more information.
Landowners and operators should check burn piles/areas which were burned earlier this spring or late last fall for any hold-over heat.  Open debris burning, including burn barrels will no longer be allowed on ODF protected lands in the Prineville and John Day Units.  Burn barrels are allowed by permit in The Dalles Unit (Hood River and Wasco County lands), however open burning such as yard debris is prohibited.   
Campfires are allowed, however please never leave a fire unattended, clear the area around the campfire including overhead, fully extinguish the fire using the drown, stir, drown method, and ensure the fire is DEAD OUT before leaving.  The use of tracer ammunition and exploding targets is prohibited during fire season.  Sky lanterns and other luminaries are prohibited at all times in Oregon.
In 2017 there were 114 fires in the District burning nearly 2,500 acres, well less than the ten year average of 11,600 acres. Seventy fires were human caused, up from the ten year average of 68.  Following fire season restrictions and prevention tips can reduce fire ignitions, causing less damage to our natural resources including air, water, and soil. 
For additional information on ODF’s Central Oregon District, including contact information and unit offices, please visit www.ODFcentraloregon.com. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Deschutes County Forestland Classification Committee Meeting

[Sisters, Ore.]  The Deschutes County Forestland Classification Committee will meet April 30, 2018 at 9 a.m. at the Oregon Department of Forestry office in Sisters, Oregon.  Agenda items include an update on the Central Oregon District Boundary relocation process, review and edit of the preliminary forestland classification, and developing a timeline and process for public information meetings/public hearing for adoption of the final classification.  The meeting is open to any interested landowners and the public.
“Forestland classification” is the process used to determine lands inside a forest protection boundary which meet the definition of forestland (ORS 526.005(a)).  The process further delineates these “forestlands” into lands suitable for timber production or grazing/agricultural use.  Land use zoning and taxation are not used to determine forestland classification for this process.  Forestland inside the protection boundary is provided wildfire protection by the Oregon Department of Forestry through a Forest Patrol Assessment on landowner’s property tax statements.  For more information regarding forestland classification in ODF’s Central Oregon District visit www.odfcentraloregon.com.
The meeting location is accessible to persons with disabilities. A request for an interpreter for the hearing impaired or for other accommodations for persons with disabilities should be made at least 48 hours before the meeting to Gordon Foster at the Oregon Department of Forestry office in Prineville (541) 447-5658.

Committee Members:
Ed Keith, Deschutes County Forester—Committee Chair
Gordon Foster, Oregon Department of Forestry—Secretary
Jeremy Ast, Sisters-Camp Sherman Fire Department (OSFM)
Nicole Strong, OSU Extension Forester
Bill Swarts, Timber Representative
Matt Cyrus, Grazing Representative

Friday, April 6, 2018

2017 Central Oregon District Annual Report

The 2017 Central Oregon District Annual Report was presented to the District Budget Committee on April 6th during the annual budget meeting. 

This year's report includes highlights from the challenging fire season, work under the Good Neighbor Authority, and the work Stewardship Foresters are doing with private landowners in the District.

Also included in the report are some of the ways the District is working to improve efficiency and finding innovative ways to face the ever-changing demands of forestry and wildfire suppression. 

The District's commitment to safety was emphasized in 2017 by reconvening the District Safety Committee. Led by personnel from around the District the committee focused on engaging all employees, working to improve the "Safety Culture" and overall wellness of everyone.

As you read through the report you will notice that our personnel are our biggest asset.  This is emphasized by the number and length of "Service Awards" and the various leadership roles employees took on to improve service to landowners and support co-workers.