Fire Mitigation


JULY 20, 2019

1. Ray Martin, Martin’s Wood Services has completed work on Halcon, Bluebird (cliffside of Timberlake Road) and Conejo between Halcon and Bluebird.  Approximately 5.5 miles still needs to be completed in Zone 1.  Ray has been paid for 1 mile of Zone 1 work.

a. Question to Steve Wills, may we please have a signed copy of Martin contract for our files?  Also, was the Additional Insured Certificate received from Ray Martin?  

b. May 28t, 2019 letter sent out to obtain bids indicated that partial payment would be made at the completion of each section.  Is Martin being paid by the section or by the mile?

2. On July 17, we met with Peter Allen, Allen Fire LLC , who is a certified wildfire mitigation expert and a State contractor with NM.  He is starting his own mitigation/forest management business and was recommended by Todd Haines, District Forester for our part of NM.  We toured the ranch to assess the scale of the problem.  He agrees we have a heavy fuel load issue, at high risk for a devastating fire.  He will send us information on his company and a range of prices for various services he provides.

3. We met with Todd Haines on July 18, 2019 to discuss the importance of having a Management Plan developed ASAP, since this is needed in order to be eligible for the Forest Health Incentive Program for Timberlake.  He referred us to Tom Marks, who works with his office, for assistance in writing the Management Plan.  We hope to meet with him around the first of August since the deadline is critical (September). Approximate cost to Timberlake is $5,000 to complete the several hundred page Plan for all 7,000 acres.  If we do not meet the deadline for this fall, we will lose a year.  More details concerning cost sharing for landowners will be discussed at the meeting.  We are respectfully asking the Board to approve this expense ASAP since it is critical to get started now.  

4. Mary Jo and Ron talked to CDEC several times and Ron was finally able to get Mark Bahls, CDEC, to agree to have their sub-contractors leave brush piles no higher than two feet tall.  They were leaving the piles six feet high, which is unacceptable.  Ranger Whitehair from Mt. Taylor also assisted in this request to CDEC.

5. Fire Mitigation updates have been put on the website and in the July newsletter.  An update will also be provided at the July 23rd, Watch Group Meeting.

(fire mitigation sub committee report 7202019)


Mary Jo Wallen and Eileen Domer

At the annual meeting on May 25th, the committee  provided educational handouts describing ways to protect our homes and property.  These will also be available at our Annual Watch Group Meeting on July  23rd at the Ranch House at 6 pm and at the Tuesday Library Days.  You can contact Mary Jo Wallen at 1-505-269-5022 if you want anything before the July 23rd meeting.  TRLA windshield stickers are also available from Mary Jo Wallen or Nancy Wills -505 783 2457 (local) or 505 975 0528 (cell).

We are pleased that the TRLA Board budgeted $10,000 to begin fire mitigation along 10 miles of side roads in Timberlake.  Ray Martin won the bid to start trimming ladder fuels.  The goal is to complete this project before the chain saw restrictions begin.

We hope that through education and institution of specific projects Wildfire Mitigation will become an intrinsic part of the duties and responsibilities of every landowner and of the TRLA Board of Directors. Timberlake is designated as very high risk of a devasting crown wildfire. The Committee will  continue researching the possibility of obtaining grants to help landowners mitigate their property.

Please contact Mary Jo Wallen, Ron or Rachel Schali (505-906-7512) or Tim or Eileen Domer (1-505-713-0570) if you want more information on:

1.  Helping an elderly or disabled person with cutting brush and taking the brush to the burn pile.

2. If you need help, let us know what type of assistance you need.

3. If you would want to “chip in to rent a chipper”.  You would have to have the brush already cut and properly positioned to maximize the rental time of the chipper.

4. If you want to have a risk assessment done around your home.

During the annual meeting we discussed the reasons why we should all participate in this on-going project to protect our homes.  Todd Haines, District Forester for our part of NM, gave a presentation and provided us with Tree Measurement templates to help you determine the basal area (BA) of the trees on your property. You can then determine if trees need to be thinned or allowed to continue growing.  We hope to receive more of these templates for the July 23rd meeting.

Adam Berry, Emergency Mgt Coordinator, Gallup, and Dustin Middleton, Fire Marshal/Emergency Manager from Grants gave a brief presentation supporting the Emergency Evacuation Guidelines that we recently drafted.  They appreciated the fact that Timberlake is being pro-active.  The guidelines were also reviewed with Animal Control Officers in both counties and the Livestock Board.  One suggestion was to have a buddy system between all horse owners.  Since we have several new landowners with horses, we will be talking with them soon.  Julie Farrell, Ramah Volunteer Fire Dept. also mentioned that she is concerned about dogs that might be left behind in a house or vehicle in an emergency.  She has one small crate available in one of the Emergency vehicles and asked that anyone who could temporarily help take care of animals in an emergency to please let her know at 783-2423.

The 5/23/2019 Emergency Evacuation & Neighborhood Watch Group Guidelines will be posted in the Emergency area of our website.  Please also see the Fire Mitigation Committee's March newsletter.

Fire Mitigation Sub Committee Report