FIRST WORKING GROUP MEETING NOTES
First Working Group
Minutes of Meeting
October 20, 2015
The Working Group First meeting was held on Tuesday, October 20, 2015 in the EMS Building in Island Park, Idaho. The meeting was called to order at 6:00 p.m. Thirty-nine people attended the meeting. The following Working Group members were present or absent as noted:
- Summer and Winter Recreation (Kevin Phillips, Mountain Mayhem)
- Non-motorized Recreation (Connie Funkhouser, Connie’s Restaurant
- Hunting/Sportsman’s Club (Ron Kynaston)
- Fishing (Jon Stiehl, Trout Hunter)
- Business/Chamber of Commerce/Realtors (Jackie Jensen, Chamber President, absent)
- Property Owners/Private Property (Bob Stantus, can also represent winter recreation and Chamber of Commerce Vice President)
- Watershed (Dale Swenson, Henry’s Fork Watershed Council
- Agriculture/Ranching (Luke Davis, Hal Buster)
- Fund Raising (Connie Funkhouser, Connie’s Restaurant)
- Press (Ann Anthony, Island Park News)
- Sustainable Fire Community (Joe Sielinsky)
- Citizens at Large (Perry and Rosemary Thompson, retired National Park Service, both absent, Joe and Derinda Eudey, both absent, Terrence Beck)
- Caldera Heritage Coalition (Ken Watts, Leanne Yancey, Alynn Crapo, Terry DeLong)
- Secretary/Stenographer (Judy Koehly)
- Consultant/Advisor/Spokesman (Sandra Mitchell, Idaho Recreation Council)
In addition to Working Group members, the following people were in attendance: State Representative Paul Romrell and Mrs. Romrell, all three Fremont County Commissioners, the Fremont County Sheriff, Mayor Tom Jewell, representatives from the Idaho Governor’s office, Senator Crapo’s office, Senator Risch’s office, Congressman Simpson’s Office, U. S. Forest Service, Idaho Fish and Game, Fall River, The Nature Conservancy, Greater Yellowstone Coalition and others.
Ken Watts thanked everyone for coming to the meeting. Julie Ellsworth facilitated the meeting.
On September 29, 2015, 112 people attended the community meeting regarding the preservation of the Island Park caldera. The attendees at that meeting made it clear that their goal was to have a working group develop legislation to permanently maintain the Island Park Caldera as a multiple use conservation area. Once the Working Group has completed the wording for the legislation, they will present it to the community to ensure that the wording is what the community wants.
Julie Ellsworth asked the group what form or organization they thought would work best. After discussion by the group, it was decided that we would have a Chairperson, committees, secretary and treasurer. Ken Watts was nominated for chair. A discussion was held regarding his role as Chair of the Caldera Heritage Coalition. The Working Group decided it was not a conflict. There were no other nominations for Chairperson. Ken Watts was elected Chairperson. Judy Koehly and Terry DeLong were nominated for the Secretary position. Terry DeLong declined and Judy Koehly was elected Secretary. Terry DeLong was nominated as Treasurer, there were no other nominations. Terry DeLong was elected Treasurer.
Julie Ellsworth asked the group for suggestions for a name of the organization, emphasizing the fact that it would be on our website and that the website will be used to get more members, get help, give information and get donations. The following names were suggested:
Island Park Caldera Legislation Working Group
Island Park Multiple Use
Island Park Caldera Working Group
Island Park Community Multiple User Working Group
Caldera Working Group
A discussion was held about it being broader than Island Park. We will decide the title at the next meeting. Should we use any of the following words: “coalition” “cooperative” “preservation” “multi-use”? The Working Group plans to meet the third Tuesday of each month. The next three (3) meetings will be held on November 17, December 15 and January 19. The group may need to meet more often. The place and time of the meetings will be determined. The first fund raiser will be held at Connie’s Restaurant on Sunday, November 1st. Flyers will be distributed.
Julie Ellsworth stated that we needed to define the area. It was determined that the Northern line has always been the Montana state line, the Western border the Clark County line, the Eastern border the Wyoming state line and the Southern border the Ashton Hill. Representative Romrell reported that this was the definition used in the state legislation. Further discussion was held regarding the Southern border. The general consensus of the Working Group was that the Southern border should encompass the USFS land and the BLM land within the Fremont County border. Ken Watts reported that the government jurisdictions that were already involved were in that area. Bob Stantus recommended that we form a small group to look at maps and make a recommendation to the group regarding the Southern border. Commission Miller stated that we can get good maps from the county for that purpose. Greg Bitter will pick up the maps. The map committee will email their recommendations to the Working Group prior to the next meeting.
Julie Ellsworth asked the group what they considered the exceptional and remarkable features of the area. The following list was discussed:
Henry’s Fork Wildlife Forest
Mesa Falls Wide-Open Spaces People
Livestock Grazing Mountains Recreation
Solitude Harriman State Park Henry’s Lake St. Park
Scenery Flats Big Springs
Warm Springs IP Community Trail Proj. Irrigation Water
City of Island Park Water Private Land Rights
Public Land Rights Hunting Fishing
Community Development Mt. Jefferson Land Development
Management & Protection of Wildlife
A discussion was held regarding being very specific on the list so nothing we really want would be omitted. The group also discussed use possibilities in the future.
The goal is to have no other jurisdiction over the area and to keep the current relationships we have with the government agencies.
The group touched on some things that could be objectionable, i.e. too much development, mining operations, etc. This was tabled for later. The goal is to make this permanent and to prohibit acquisition by the government. The group will need to spend more time on the conservation portion of our legislation. The legislation will need widespread support to be passed in Congress.
Leanne Yancey will email a list of links to similar legislation. The group needs to look at the management plans, and determine what would work or not work for the community. At the next meeting, the group will break down into committees and subcommittees. The group will need to write our “core values.” The group will need to look at language in successful legislation and look for unintended consequences in legislation.
Ken Watts will prepare the meeting agendas. He will ask people with assignments to give reports, schedule what needs to be accomplished in the next two months and solicit information from the committees.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:10 p.m.
Judy B. Koehly, Secretary