Special Thanks to
All Members Who Wrote Letters
We asked you, our members, to write to Congress in support of Wildfire Funding Reform. I've heard from many who sent letters and received copies of some response letters. We're hoping legislation passes, and will let you know when we know more.
To learn more about the problem of fire-borrowing, read this document from 2015.
NFH Fall Forum: Twin Cities
What a great day it was for our NFH Fall Forum in the Twin Cities, held at the University of Minnesota on Saturday, September 17th. Thanks to our organizers, the staff at UMN Carlson Private Dining Room, our speakers and the wonderful cabin owners who attended.
Lee Frelich, Director of the UMN Center for Forest Ecology (pictured to the right of the podium) spoke about climate impacts, storm events and the changing face of the forests in Minnesota. Attendees responded enthusiastically to his superb presentation.
Steve Therrien, a retired teacher and fly-fishing guide, offered wise and practical insights into the process of USFS land exchanges. Doug Gann, NFH Director, gave a quick recap of the Cabin Fee Act and answered questions from the attendees. And our excellent Region 9 and Chippewa National Forest staff friends joined us to talk about the local forests and answer cabin owner questions at our round tables.
Pictured from the left are Christine Brown - Lands & Recreation Program Manager for the Chippewa National Forest, Sean Dunham - Heritage Program Manager and Archeologist for the Chippewa NF, Mark Hummel - Region 9 Special Uses Program Manager, and Laura Underhill, Reality Specialist in the Chippewa NF. They were lovely and helpful in every way! Bon Voyage, Mark, on your retirement.
We had plenty of time for interaction at our 4 round tables on Cabin Fee Act, Forest Health, Historic Preservation and Land Exchanges.
NFH Staff also took an inspiring trip to an NFH member tract in Wisconsin. Our hosts Jerry and Christine Popenhagen, along with other cabin friends in the Lovers Bay Tract, gave us a sweet tour of their tract. If not for CFA, we might have lost many if not all of these cabins due to high fees!
A gorgeous fall day on Owens Lake and a great visit to these long-time friends of the cabin community.
NFH Bylaw Change Widely Supported
The NFH Board of Directors recommended bylaw change was approved at the 2016 Annual Business Meeting. The term of the immediate past president's director position was changed to a one-year term. To view this change, click here.
Building the Cabin Community:
NFH Spring 2016 Conference
To see presentations from the 2016 NFH Conference in Santa Clara, CA, click HERE.
Quite a few cabin owners learned more about creating a trust and preparing for their children to become cabin owners. Others were very interested in ways to renovate and improve their cabins, while also being sensitive to historic features and sustainable materials. More issues of concern included the drought and water access challenges, possible land swaps and cabin security.
This NFH gathering was a great and rewarding experience. We love sharing stories and the exchange of wisdom.
FIRE INCIDENT UPDATES
Great work by the USFS fire staff & volunteer fire fighters with the Holy Jim and Trabuco Canyon cabin owners.
Fire season continues as dry forests, lightening storms and high temperatures combine to create ideal wildfire conditions. Check out the status of the current fires in Colorado where some cabin tracts are on evacuation notice.
Click on state location of your cabin for updates
Arizona California Colorado
Idaho Montana Nevada New Mexico
Oregon Washington Wyoming
NFH Member Tract Renewals
The renewal timeframe for member tracts has not changed. Each member tract renews on their annual cycle, tied to their annual meeting, just as you have in previous years. The new membership terminology you may have read about in the newsletter is Common Renewal. Common Renewal is for individual members only. It does not impact tracts who handle renewals for their cabin owners as a group.
Questions? Contact Sharon Karr, Membership Administrator at 541.549.8592.
NEW! State Coordinator Program:
Seeking a Program Field Director
NFH leadership voted in May, 2015 to establish the
State Coordinator Program.
The reasoning was simple. Local cabin owners would contact other local cabin owners so that NFH could learn more about cabins and cabin tracts, far and wide, so that cabin tracts and cabin owners could benefit from the collective, institutional knowledge base within the NFH network.
It’s taken over a year for this vision to coalesce into a plan, and in 2017 the plan will become a reality. NFH will soon be seeking a paid (approx. 1/3 time) Field Director who will be searching the cabin world for State Coordinators.
Our goal, quite simply, is to grow our cabin owner network so that we can all help each other with our collective experiences.
Where are We Now?
Most cabin owners have received their 2016 permit fee bill. The 2016 permit fee represents a very important milestone, the resetting of the base permit fee for your lot. Going forward, this fee amount will be adjusted annually for inflation, the only future fee increase allowed under the CFA. Cabin owners will not face future fee uncertainty and steep fee increases common under the prior fee system.
To learn more, click on Cabin Fee Act Summary and Frequently Asked Questions.
So what happens next?
From the FS. Along with your 2016 bill, the Forest Service also provided most cabin owners with a Frequently Asked Questions document, click here to see a copy.
Appeal v. Errors. While there is no CFA fee appeal; if you believe there is an error with the key elements used to determine your fee (appraisal amount, date of value, or typical lot grouping), the permit holder should contact their permit administrator to request a correction. NFH is prepared to assist members if they have reason to question their 2016 fee amount.
Permit Changes. In the near future, you will receive a permit addendum, updating permit terms to conform to the new CFA law. All other terms of existing permits remain in effect, including the 20-year term. All future new permits will be issued with the updated CFA language.
Transfer Fees. Fees begin in 2016, as soon as the Forest Service finalizes rules for new permits issued due to a change of cabin ownership. A couple of questions have been raised from the Forest Service Frequently Asked Question document and NFH has asked the FS for further clarification. We will share what we learn in the near future.
Please click Ask CFA Question, or contact Sharon Leach, NFH Executive Director for questions.
See NFH 2016 Election Results HERE.