Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Community support requested to move Head Start program to Orofino Elementary

Joe Pippenger, Cynthia Tierney and Bob Vian at the June 5 Orofino Chamber of Commerce meeting spoke in support of moving the Head Start program to the elementary school. A building has been purchased for $15,000. $30,000 needs to be raised before the transition can take place. Grant money will be applied for after we have the $30,000.

This move will benefit the kids by having them in class longer and not on a bus being transported back and forth. The current Headstart location is cramped, and this will provide the necessary space. This move will not cost the school district, but will save them money in transportation and personnel. Very much a win-win for all those involved.

CVH Auxiliary Wine Tasting

Ashley Steinbruecker from Clearwater Valley Hospital announced the CVH Auxiliary Wine Tasting will be June 21 at the Best Western Lodge at River's Edge. Tickets are now available.

Flag pole

Many positive comments have been received about the Chamber’s flag pole project. Finishing touches will be done in the near future.

Maniac Dam Race

Tanna Zywina and Kim Browning reported the Maniac Dam Race has been postponed, and they are awaiting confirmation from the sponsor for the new date.

4th of July

Cheryl Jones is looking for volunteers to help with the Orofino 4th of July celebration. Please call her, as they are short handed.


Loren Whitten-Kaboth reported that Pierce has three new businesses: Clearwater Fitness, Whymsical Mysteries, and Pioneer Inn. The Deyo Reservoir’s grand opening is June 29. The RFP for CCED for the next three years has been completed; just waiting on the outcome.

New members

Ann Anderson welcomed new Chamber members: Subway and Bald Mtn./Clearwater Ski Club.


Ralph Rau, Deputy Supervisor for the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest discussed forest updates along with combined forest information.

The fire personnel number will remain the same as last year. Last year 250,000 acres were burned and so far 600 acres have been burnt as prescribed burns. Based on snow pack and precipitation, the forest service is projecting another bad fire year.

There will be a total of 2,699 miles of trail work done on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest.

The Upper Lochsa Land Exchange is in the appraisal process. This takes awhile, so they don’t expect to hear much on this in the near future.

The Travel Plan for the Clearwater has been signed and is under litigation, but the maps are at the printer.

Mr. Rau provided some reasons why the two forests were combined. The budgets for the forests are down $10-11 million. The combined budget is $30 million. There are 360 current employees which are down from 500+ at the high. The rangers have been decreased from 12-13 to 6.

Manpower and budget efficiency seems to be a driving force. Just a bit of history, the area of districts was originally set up based on how far a forest ranger could ride in a day on a horse. Not sure there is anything better than a horse on some of the Clearwater today!

The lease on the Orofino office is up in 2014. The USFS is working on a lease for the first floor for the North Fork Ranger Station. It would leave 35-40 permanent people here with a few from other departments. It seems the current landowner is interested in looking at this proposal. The folks at the forest level will be going to Kamiah.

A question was asked if the forest was interested in putting travel maps and wood permits on the internet. At some point they would like to accomplish this. It is currently not in the works.

Chamber guests

Janene Leaton, Cynthia Tierney, and Tim Rohr from “Friends of Head Start” were guests at the June 5 Chamber meeting.


There will be no Chamber meeting on July 3.

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