PLT Volunteer Program
by Kelsey Stavseth
People who volunteer do so because they are passionate, dedicated and excited about an organization and its mission. At Placer Land Trust, our volunteers have not only exhibited these qualities time and time again, but they’ve also shown that volunteers have something to teach Placer Land Trust staff.
As Placer Land Trust continues to protect new land and apply new and better managment techniques, an established and organized volunteer program has become more important to the organization.
August 27th marked a turning point for our volunteer program. We hosted a volunteer party at the Placer Land Trust office to unveil our new volunteer opportunities. The turnout was amazing! Over 30 people came to learn and support our newly established volunteer program.
We have designed opportunities that allow volunteers to be more involved in the development and management of Placer Land Trust’s restoration and stewardship efforts.
Each program offers the appropriate training for volunteers so that they feel comfortable participating in each activity. Ideally PLT would like to see sustained volunteer involvement, leading to volunteer-run programs and events. Some of our new volunteer programs are listed below.
— Represent PLT at community events.
— Process membership donations and update our database.
— Assist with Land Lines.
— Assist with the production of other materials.
Annual Property Monitoring
— Monitor PLT properties and easements, conduct surveys, take photographs, assess the overall health of habitat and property, and work with PLT staff to document and map any problem areas using GPS and GIS.
— Hike on properties not yet open to the public and see some of the most beautiful areas in Placer County.
— Adopt a Placer Land Trust property.
— Manage invasive weeds.
— Plant native species and monitor disturbances.
— Conduct a habitat assessment documenting the health of vegetation, bank stability, and suitable habitat.
— Monitor streams including identification of organisms living in the stream and chemicals that could affect biodiversity.
PLT’s website, www.placerlandtrust.org, has a complete description of our volunteer opportunities including timelines, target goals and training programs.
Contact Kelsey Stavseth to get involved: firstname.lastname@example.org.
State Assemblyman and Conservancy staff
tour Canyon View Preserve
By Jeff Ward
In September, State Assemblyman Ted Gaines visited Placer Land Trust’s Canyon View Preserve Watershed and Habitat Restoration Project with PLT and Sierra Nevada Conservancy staff.
The Canyon View Project is an extensive restoration project on PLT’s Canyon View Preserve located in the North Fork American River watershed. This Preserve is directly adjacent to the Auburn State Recreation Area and offers prime views of the Sierra Crest and the American River Canyon. The goals of the project are to improve water quality, reduce wildfire danger, and restore wildlife habitat.
In the spring of 2008 PLT contracted with Hanford ARC to mechanically remove three acres of Himalayan blackberry and understory vegetation. This past summer, local rancher Dan Macon used goats and sheep to graze Himalayan blackberry re-sprouts and yellow starthistle, reducing fire hazard and invasive plant species growth.
Assemblyman Gaines reviewed the Preserve’s critical management challenges and how PLT is addressing them through ongoing restoration activities. These practices benefit the adjacent community and the overall health of the Preserve.
PLT received funds through the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) for the Canyon View Project. The State’s financial crisis forced SNC to stop reimbursing contracts in this program in December. PLT continued with certain grant project activities without reimbursements during the first half of 2009, carrying over $75,000 of expenses.
In August, PLT received authorization from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy to re-start the Canyon View Watershed and Habitat Restoration Project.
This fall, PLT will work with California Conservation Corps (CCC) to continue fuel load reduction work in the oak woodland under story and create a shaded fuel break to reduce fire hazard on the Preserve and in the adjacent communities. Future work will include restoration of riparian areas to reduce erosion and sedimentation in Sierra Canyon Creek and further down into the North Fork of the American River.
From the Board Room
Gregg McKenzie Joins PLT Board of Directors
By Bob Gilliom
Placer Land Trust is pleased to announce the newest member of its Board of Directors, long-time PLT supporter and advisor Gregg McKenzie.
Gregg is an independent consultant with expertise in restoration, mitigation, environmental permitting, and land acquisition. His business, The McKenzie Land Company, is based in Rocklin.
“My interest in the conservation and restoration of our environment began in my early childhood, fishing and hunting in the Sierra’s with my father and grandfather,” said Gregg. “These early experiences peaked my educational interest in the environment and the positive role that we can play in its conservation, as well as the need for restoration resulting from recent and historical impacts.”
Gregg serves as a City of Rocklin Planning Commissioner and as a member of the Placer County Conservation Plan (PCCP) Biologic Working Group.
“We are very pleased to welcome Gregg to our Board of Directors,” said PLT President Fred Yeager. “His experience with mitigation, land acquisition, and environmental restoration will help PLT immensely with implementing our mission of permanent conservation in Placer county.”
Prior to forming his own company, Gregg worked for the Del Webb corporation as Vice President of Land and Entitlement and as Director of Government Affairs and Regulatory Affairs in the Western U.S. He worked with a variety of local, State and federal government agencies as well as industry and community leaders on issue related to environmental regulation.
Born and raised in Placer County, Gregg now resides in Rocklin with his wife of 13 years, Tiffany, and their two sons Parker and Mason. Aside from environmental conservation, his favorite outdoor interest is fly fishing.
“Although the majority of my related work is currently outside Placer County, it is here that I find the greatest opportunity to have the positive impact, to look not only to preservation but also restoration as a means to ensure that the 5th and following generations of my family have even greater opportunities to enjoy Placer County’s open spaces and a diversity of experiences with nature.”
Gregg is a graduate of CSU Chico with a masters degree in Environmental Geography and Planning. His prior work experience includes assisting Gov. Pete Wilson’s offi ce with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and environmental planning in the Office of Planning and Research, and working as a planner for the City of Chico and the County of Siskiyou. He has authored numerous land use, regulation, and planning guides for publication.
PLT at the State Capital in November
PLT will be in Sacramento this fall to promote our new partnerships and land conservation initiatives.
In early November, PLT is sponsoring the exclusive pre-opening of the Ten22 restaurant in Old Sacramento and partnering with the Trust for Public Land and the Nevada County Land Trust to unveil our new Bear River watershed conservation initiative. If you’re interested in supporting this event, please give us a call!
On Friday, Nov. 13, PLT is sponsoring the opening of Robert Glenn Ketchum’s natural landscape photography exhibit in Sacramento.
Kechum’s exhibit, which will support Western land conservation efforts, will take place at the Viewpoint Photographic Art Center on J Street in Midtown Sacramento.
For more details on these and other community events PLT is sponsoring, please give us a call.
Thank you to our event hosts and partners!
PLT Sets Lofty Goals for Bear River
Watershed Protection Program
Placer County is defined by few things as much or as well as its rivers. From the tumbling Yuba River to the wildly popular American River, this county is home to some awesome waterways.
The Bear River is perhaps the most spectacular of Placer’s rivers. The Bear forms the entire northwestern boundary of the county, and is one of its richest and most diverse watersheds, encompassing some of the last roadless and relatively “wild” land in western Placer County.
Please contact Placer Land Trust to learn about and support a special new partnership to protect the Bear River watershed, connect existing preserved lands, and save the wild beauty of this watershed for this and future generations.
PLT to Host Two New AmeriCorps Volunteers
PLT has been selected as a Sierra Nevada AmericCorps Partnership site for the fourth year running, and once again, we will host two volunteers in 2010.
PLT will hire one volunteer to support our stewardship program and one to support our education and outreach efforts.
The stewardship volunteer will focus on assessing the conservation values of potential land projects, creating baseline documentation and management plans for properties, performing annual monitoring of preserves, coordinating and implementing creek and habitat restoration projects.
The Outreach volunteer will support PLT’s publications, volunteer and educational programs and lead PLT events including the popular Treasured Landscapes Tours.
AmeriCorps volunteers work in paid positions for ten months. For more information or to apply see www.sierranevadaalliance. org or call the PLT office at 530-887-
Volunteer Highlight: The Great Sierra River Cleanup
by Kristin Haider
On Saturday, September 19, Placer Land Trust participated in the first annual Great Sierra River Cleanup, sponsored by the Sierra Nevada Conservancy.
Sixteen volunteers along with AmeriCorps interns Kristin Haider and Kelsey Stavseth spent their Saturday morning cleaning up trash along Sierra Canyon Creek on PLT’s Canyon View Preserve in Auburn. Much of the trash likely washed down into the Preserve from the Bowman Canal. A recent blackberry removal project on the Preserve unmasked a lot of debris that had amassed over the years. The volunteers removed approximately 900 pounds of garbage from the Preserve including 13 bags of trash, 6 bags of recycling, 300 pounds of scrap metal, and 8 tires. By all accounts this was a very successful cleanup.
Even a family of black bears appeared briefly to show their appreciation for the cleaner Preserve!
A special thank you to all of the volunteers for your hard work, to the House of Bread for donating snacks for the volunteers, and to Auburn Placer Disposal Service for allowing PLT to dispose of the trash free of charge.
Placer Land Trust would like to recognize and thank all volunteers who helped remove trash from Canyon View Preserve:
Carolyn Macola, Fletcher, Diana Cox, Jim and Cathy Haagen-Smit, Anna Maninan, Susan Hayes, Lori Gualco, Gia Rossitto, Mary Rossitto, Marjorie Krueger, Jerry Mohlenbrok, Gary Grisham, Laura Friudenberg, Tonja Tallent.
For a complete list of volunteer opportunities, call us at (530) 887-9222, email email@example.com, or see the “Get Involved” section of our website, www.placerlandtrust.org.
Executive Director’s Report
Get Your License Plate to Protect the Sierra Nevada
Five years ago on the banks of the Bear River, Placer Land Trust celebrated the creation of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, a new state agency dedicated to protecting the resources of the Sierra Nevada.
This month, as part of the Conservancy’s 5-year anniversary, the State of California is announcing a new Sierra Nevada license plate available to the public to support their efforts.
Since the Conservany’s inception, land trusts, fire safe councils, public agencies, and other organizations throughout the region have benefited from the Conservancy, which has granted over $3 million to projects in Placer County alone. In 2008 Placer Land Trust received a grant from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy to restore habitat and water quality at our Canyon View Preserve, along with reducing fuel loads to help prevent catastrophic wildfire. Ours is one of many worthy projects funded by the Conservancy, which is dedicated to solving the problems and challenges in the Sierra Nevada and bringing more economic investment into our region.
You can help Placer Land Trust, the Conservancy and our region by becoming one of the first to own one of the new Sierra Nevada license plates. All funds from this plate will go directly to support Sierra Nevada Conservancy grant programs. Like the work performed by the Conservancy and local land trusts, the license plate program is based on voluntary participation. To get your plate, fill out the enclosed brochure and mail in your check today, or sign up online (sierralicenseplate.org) and pass the brochure on to a friend. Tell ‘em PLT sent you! You can also order a license plate as a gift for a friend or relative who loves the Sierra as much as you do.
See ya on down the road!