Yosemite West Property &
Homeowners, Inc.

YWPHI Board of Directors' Meeting - June 17, 2006

The meeting was held on Saturday, June 17, 2006, at the home of Kim O'Neil. The meeting was called to order by President Grace Bartel at 10:10 a.m. and the agenda was distributed.

Directors Present

Grace Bartel, Debby Hagan, Tom Lambert, Kim O'Neil, and Kay Pitts

Directors Absent

Jim Andrews and Carol Ruiz

Committee Chairs Present


The minutes from the March 25, 2006 YWPHI Board of Directors meeting by Debby Hagan were approved. A discussion concerning new formatting for the Treasurer's report was presented by Kim O'Neil. Kim will be Acting Treasurer until February 2007, when Al Ruiz will take over this position for YWPHI. The Treasurer's report will now be prepared on a quarterly basis instead of at the time of the Board of Directors' meetings, as was the custom in the past. The final first quarter report was not distributed at the meeting. The first and second quarter reports will be generated June 30. Kim reported that the membership total in June was 113. Membership has increased by 17 since March. Seven families joined in order to take advantage of the YWPHI sponsored chipping program. A motion was made by Kim to change the title from "Treasurer and Membership Chair" to "Treasurer". The motion passed with 3 in favor and 2 opposed. The membership renewal notice was discussed; the opportunity for changing previous information (address/email) and a confidentiality statement will be added to the draft.

Committee Reports

Newsletter (Tom Lambert, Editor)

The next newsletter will be distributed in July to all property owners even if they are not YWPHI members. Kim is preparing the July newsletter, and Tom Lambert will assume responsibility for future newsletters. The July issue will contain membership forms and the notice for the YWPHI annual meeting and potluck brunch on Labor Day weekend. Anyone in the community who wants to contribute content for future newsletters should contact Tom.

Fire Safety (John Mock, Chair)

The successful Spring chipping program was discussed. 35 property owners representing 44 lots participated in the program. Approximately 31% of the total YWPHI membership used the chipper. This resulted in decreasing the fuel load at the burn pile in addition to encouraging fire safety within our community. The Board had approved funding this chipper program at a maximum cost of $2500; an increase in this amount by $500 was approved by email to cover the total cost. On June 13th, 10 people from Yosemite West met with representatives from the Center for Fire Research, College of Natural Resources at the University of California, Berkeley (see www.yosemitewest.org/firesafe.htm for link). With Board approval, this group is using Yosemite West for their Sierra fire study. The Center has already gathered digital (GIS) data available from earlier studies from Wildland Fire Associates (WFA) and Mariposa County (Red Zone data). Two field researchers from the Center will be visiting Yosemite West during the week of June 19th to conduct a fire safety assessment of structures. The Center will be mailing a self-assessment survey to Yosemite West property owners; this will provide information to compare homeowners' perceptions of their fire safety status to that of the researchers. The combination lock on one of the fire hose houses was stolen. A replacement must be purchased. The funds expected from approval of last year's fire safety grant proposals (approximately $56,000), have not been received yet. These funds come from the federal budget and will be used for creating a shaded fuel break around Yosemite West, completing the Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), and establishing a community Fire Safe Program. Work on these projects cannot begin until funding is received. Issues which must be addressed include signing memoranda of understanding between 4 groups (YWPHI, NPS, CA FSC, and YSRCD), NEPA and CEQUA compliance, insurance for the project, the mechanics of transferring funds, hiring a project manager, and contract bidding. The three other agencies with which we are working are the California Fire Safe Council (CA FSC), the National Park Service (NPS), and Yosemite Sequoia Resource Conservation & Development Council (YSRCD, our fiscal sponsor). NEPA is the National Environmental Policy Act and CEQUA is the California Environmental Quality Act.

Website (Kim O'Neil, Webmaster)

A website activity report was distributed by Kim. Monthly hits for the website from March through May range between 3500 and 5200. In June domain spam filtering was purchased and set up for our website.

Nominating (Carol Ruiz and Tom Lambert)

This committee will be searching for volunteers interested in being nominated for election to the YWPHI Board of Directors at the next annual meeting.

Hospitality (Carol Ruiz and Jim Andrews)

Helen Yates has volunteered to help coordinate the 2006 Holiday Home Tour. The tour will be held on December 23, 2006, at 3 p.m.

Old Business

Lifting of the Building Moratorium in Yosemite West

The Mariposa County Board of Supervisors lifted the building moratorium on June 1, 2006. In order to build, many County Departments must be consulted. These include the Planning and Building departments (building permit), the Public Works Department (EDU assignment), and the Resource Conservation District (grading permits). A discussion ensued concerning whether or not property owners were informed that the Yosemite West Special Plan was pending. YWPHI needs to ask Mariposa County if permit applicants are being informed.

Pacific Forest Trust (PFT)

Grace Bartel has contacted the Pacific Forest Trust several times in order to secure from them written confirmation that they will repair all roads within Yosemite West which are impacted by their logging activities. PFT estimates that work may begin in the fall. No definitive commitment from PFT concerning road repairs has occurred.

Emergency Telephone Tree Update

The emergency telephone tree can be accessed through our website. Two issues were raised by Board members concerning the telephone tree. The Fire Dispatch number may be incorrect, and there is confusion about which agency is issuing burn permits.

New Business

Gift from Ken and Marilyn Wall

Ken Wall addressed the board concerning a project that he may want to undertake in the future. As a memorial to John Clark, the Walls are considering installing a flagpole between the mailbox shed and the outside mailboxes, positioned behind the outside mailboxes. The proposal is to install a 22' tall flagpole above ground level using a 3' deep support hole; the flag will be 4' x 6' in size, and the tie-down will be placed at 8-10' above pavement in order to avoid vandalism. Feasibility of installing a solar light so the flag can remain up 24/7 is unknown at this time. The Walls plan to pay for materials (partial estimate without lighting at $515) and Ken would install the pole himself. When asked by the board, the Walls agreed to accept donations to cover materials if the project was completed. The Walls are also interested in adding lettering to the mailbox shed which states "Yosemite West". After discussion, the board voted in favor of supporting the Walls in this project (3 yes, 2 abstained) and agreed to place the project on the agenda for the annual meeting as a report by the Walls.

Plans for the annual meeting September 3, 2006

The text for the annual meeting notice was approved, and assignments for board members to handle purchases such as beverages and utensils, door prizes, and set-up were discussed.

Yosemite Institute - New Campus Plans

Board members recently learned that the Yosemite Institute is considering building a campus with classrooms and housing for approximately 150 school children on NPS property, near the sand lot at the entrance to the access road for our community. Kay Pitts volunteered to draft a letter informing the Yosemite Institute of our concerns (fire safety and lack of a fire station, water and sewer issues) and lack of notification to Yosemite West property owners.

The next board meeting will be held on Sunday, September 3, 2006, immediately following the annual meeting and Potluck at Betty Clark's yard. The meeting was adjourned by President Bartel at 12:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Deborah O. Hagan
YWPHI Secretary

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