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Start Date: May 22, 2018
Location: 10 miles NE of Reserve, NM (Gila NF)
Acres: 47,370                   
Cause: Human-caused
Fuels: Timber (litter, grass and understory) 
Containment: 82%                 
Total Personnel: 120

General Information: On Wednesday, June 19 a transfer of command to the Type 3 team occurred. The Type 3 Incident Commander is Scott Jones, with Marcus Cornwell as trainee. Firefighters continue to monitor the fire and are assessing the need for suppression actions in the southwest corner of the fire's perimeter. The Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) Team began emergency treatments to protect life, property, natural and cultural resources.

Start Date: June 14, 2018, at 11:30 AM
Size: 495 acres
Location: Northwest area of Valles Caldera National Preserve
Cause: Lightning
Containment: 30% 

[Editor's Note: This is part 3 of a multi-hour-long combined work session and regular meeting on June 12, 2018. It features the process of choosing two to fill vacancies on the Gila Regional Medical Center Board of Trustees.]

By Mary Alice Murphy

After a special meeting the week before, when Grant County commissioners clarified the process to be used in choosing two to fill general vacancies on the Gila Regional Medical Center Board of Trustees, in the middle of the June 12, 2018 meeting, the agenda item came up.

Chairman Billy Billings said that the final five as chosen out of the nine applicants would have up to 10 minutes to speak and answer the five questions that had been posed to them for this meeting.

2018.6.2From left are members of the American Legion Post 18 Ray Davis, Hal Helbedel and Roger Wright. (Courtesy Photo)

Friday June 15 2018, the High Desert Humane Society held a flag raising ceremony. The American Legion Allingham-Golding Post 18 put the first flag on the shelter's new pole.

Reserve, NM, June 19, 2018—A Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team has been assigned to assess post fire conditions for the Buzzard Fire, on the Reserve Ranger District, Gila National Forest. A BAER team addresses situations in burned areas to recommend emergency treatments to protect life, property, water quality, and natural and cultural resources on National Forest lands. BAER is “first aid”—immediate stabilization that often begins before a fire is fully contained. BAER does not seek to fix or replace what is damaged by a fire, but rather to reduce further damage to forest lands that have experienced a loss of watershed function. BAER treatments in the southwest are some of the first activities to be accomplished as fires go out. The objective is to get treatments in place ahead of monsoon rains to lessen the effects of flooding and extreme runoff.
A variety of emergency treatments have been approved to treat areas of the Buzzard Fire.

They include:
· Aerial seeding of approximately 2000 acres of high severity burn areas in stands of mixed conifer trees. The high severity burn areas occurred almost exclusively in mixed conifer areas.

san antonio fire jerry carrollFire burning from inside a tree. Photo by Jerry CarrollJune 19, 2018 10:00 AM

San Antonio Fire Statistics
Start Date: June 14, 2018, at 11:30 AM
Size: 495 acres
Location: Northwest area of Valles Caldera National Preserve
Cause: Lightning
Containment: 20%

Rains Not Sufficient to Lift Fire Restrictions and Closures

Fire officials want to stress that the rains received a couple of days ago were not enough to lift the Stage III fire restrictions and closures within the Jemez Mountain area. It typically takes several rain events before the moisture saturates the ground enough to allow the vegetation to restore its dehydrated system. In others words, imagine spending all day outside doing yard work in the sun and heat, but you only get 8 ounces of water to rehydrate yourself, that amount of water just isn’t enough for your body.

img 0320Before the public input section, Grant County commissioners recognized the Silver City Lady Colts for their 8th consecutive state softball championship play with a proclamation.

[Editor's Note: This is part 2 of the County Commission meeting on June 12, 2018. This article features mostly the extended public input section of the combined work session and regular meeting.]

By Mary Alice Murphy

Because the public input section was expected to be long, it was recommended that the proclamation honoring the Silver City Lady Colts for winning their 8th consecutive state softball championship be moved to before the input.

The first to speak during public input was Dr. Michelle Diaz.

Silver City, NM, June 18, 2018—The Gila National Forest is rescinding the order for Stage 2 Fire Restrictions and moving to Stage 1 Fire Restrictions effective immediately. In addition, Fire Danger has been modified down to Very High from Extreme.

Campfire and smoking restrictions will be re-implemented on the Gila National Forest in order to protect public health and reduce preventable human-caused fires. “Some rain has fallen on the 3.3 million acres that comprise the Gila National Forest, and for the most part forest visitors have been diligent with the campfire safety and taking care not to spark a human-caused fire,” states Adam Mendonca, Forest Supervisor, “but we feel it’s critical to continue with precautions to reduce the potential for any additional fire starts during this period of drought and high fire danger.”

Fire restrictions for the Gila National Forest include allowing campfires only in designated developed campgrounds and picnic areas, and must be in a Forest Service provided metal grill or metal fire pits. Fires in rock rings will not be allowed. The use of pressurized, petroleum-fueled stoves, lanterns or heating devices are acceptable, provided they meet the fire underwriter’s specifications for safety. Smoking is limited to a vehicle, building, or 3-foot area cleared of all flammable materials. Fireworks, explosives and incendiary devices are always prohibited on National Forest System lands.

Live from Silver City

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The Grant County Beat endeavors to post to the Elections page, under News, at the least, notices of candidates for Grant County races. Some candidates for statewide races have also sent their notices. 

The Beat continues to bring you new columnists.Recent additions  include the Christian Corner, for those who are already Christians or are exploring the beliefs.

The second is a business-centered column—Your Business Connection by the New Mexico Business Coalition. The group works to make policy in the state of New Mexico better for all businesses, large and small.

The Beat has a column for you gardeners out there. The Grant County Extension Service will bring you monthly columns on gardening issues. The first one posted is on Winterizing your houseplants and patio plants.

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