Snake River Canyons Park Board

Open Meeting Minutes

Thursday, July 13, 2023

19th Hole Restaurant, Jerome Country Club

Attending Board members: Chairman Bill Bridges, John Weston, Greg Moore, Jeff Pierson, Sue Williams, Brenda Weekes, Steve Paulsen, Tanya Stitt (Treasurer) and Alan Clauson (via telephone). Guests were Mike Tilka, Jerome Commissioner Art Watkins, Kirsten Hartley, and Rebecca Wildman taking minutes.

Bill called the meeting was called to order at 11:00 a.m. followed by self-introductions.

Minutes: The June 8, 2023 meeting minutes were reviewed, Sue motioned to accept, Greg second, minutes approved.

Treasurer’s Report: Tanya Stitt is the new Treasurer. Account has $1,602. Tanya advised there are still some issues but she is working on getting a detailed listing to understand the RV Grant. Bill ordered Rock at $28,500 for 4 projects preapproved by Jerome Commissioners. Sue recommended contacting Nik’s Excavation to see what rock they used. Tanya informed Greg and others to track their volunteer hours as in-kind, recommending a written time card to properly document and use of machinery or equipment should be noted as well. Greg has all the posts needed to finish the project with a cost of $3/post with 55 posts.

RV Park: Sue reported all pads are now numbered, eight picnic tables are installed and the rest are coming. Vault toilet is installed and locked but sump for the vault toilet is not locked. Sue will see that it gets its own lock. Cattle guard will be installed at North end the first week in August. It is comprised of pre-cast concrete from three 4-foot sections. Gerald Martens trying to get the larger cattle guard from Broken Bridge area to install at the Park mid-end of August. Access road signage is in with directional and speed limit in next few weeks. Fire rings coming in any time and Bill will follow-up. Second vault toilet ordered and going in at Morley Arbor and will have a handicap spot and coming March to April of next year. The Equestrian group will unload and install the corral at the North end of the open area. Concrete walkway and apron to toilet is coming, with one estimate and waiting for a second. The estimate from one contractor said it would be two weeks out, so mid-August at the soonest. The last of the heavy equipment to be out there, plus grading with a 5-foot walkway. Small culvert will be installed and 2-foot apron around the vault. Kiosk installment on hold due to asking Jerome Commissioners for waiver of the ten-foot setback from property line. In this instance both the Park and IDL want the kiosk on their shared property line as the kiosk is double-sided. Commissioner Art Watkins will bring this to the Commissioners to see if the requirement can be waived. There are alternate places, but they are not as good as this one. Sue said the RV target open date is late August.

Website: Alternative vendor proposal presented to County Commissioners but no response yet. New vendor price goes up by $30/month plus $2k for site rebuild-refresh. Art asked for more details about past vendor issues and will follow-up with Commissioners. Bill wondered if Commissioners were going to ask the county IT department if they wanted to take this on.

Broken Bridge: Brenda shared that the last item is the flood plain development permit and now waiting for IDWR approval. Casey with P&Z said it is approved and we should have it tomorrow. Brenda informed Gerald Martens so he may get the contractor going. Last Monday Brenda and Bill asked TF City Council for $46k to pay for their side of the bridge connection and half of the railing on the bridge; awaiting feedback. Discussion about Hazard Mitigation dollars used on the grade and if it can be a wooden bridge instead of a culverts, washouts, size, etc. On July 20th Bill, Brenda and Art will present to the North Side Canal Company about Yingst Grade.

Shooting Range: John said grant was completely approved and Charlie Howell has the letter. Now it is in the hands of Fish and Wildlife Services to send the award. Grant program coming up again with due date of November 1st. Feasibility in putting an Archery Range within the park and could be done for less than $5k with 9 target stations, signing, bow/arrow holders, $3k improvements for road and parking, possibly at the hour-glass area behind Don Zuck’s arbor and out 60 yards. However the area identified may have conflicts with Rock Crawlers. John is discouraged with glass cleanup from illegal shooting not more than 15-feet off the road. No date given on when we get the money, but John said sometime in August. John suggested talking with Devil’s Corral owner about his desire to put in a 3D shooting range. Brenda asked John to add this to the planning proposal map.

Range itself coordinates have been done and an additional 25-30 comments on his survey have come in, all in support of the range. That makes 250 comments now on his public survey. The BLM put out survey too but John is not sure how many have responded. Bill said the shooting range check should go to Charlie Howell by December.

Overlook: The BLM guy is waiting for the anthropology report so that John T. can finish his approval. There is an eagle nesting in the area now.

5-Year Plan: User groups were given until July 1st for proposals and so far only rock climbing group has submitted. Alan said rock crawlers will be sending soemthing. Also interest in a Snake River Kennel Club dog park, overnight camping on the 700 for equestrians, and mountain bike trails. Brenda wants to meet with the BLM with the uses which are acceptable and separate projects by those that have BLM approval and those that do not. She will make sure BLM is good with this approach and it will help layout the timeline. Alan added they want to discuss with Mark Reyes about a layer mapping. No 5-year plan committee meeting scheduled at this point. Sue suggested review all proposals and see if another committee meeting is needed. Brenda informed Rebecca the need for more specifics on areas for the rock climbing use.

Annual Award: Discussion about an annual award for service to the SRCP. Steve motioned to call it the “Snake River Canyons Park Outstanding Service Award” and present recipient with a plaque and picture. John seconded, motion carried.  Will take nominations this December.

Speakers’ bureau: Discussed next forum and shared disappointment with turnout at the last one and heat in the month of August. Suggested tabling until next year.

Security: Bill said cameras in place and no damage so far. 

Maintenance: Need to get the weeds out and need for a tractor to cut grass on the disc golf course. Art will follow-up with Charlie.  Bill will order replacement flag for hole 18. 

Newspaper: Short article this month. Brenda asked about holding a ground breaking for the Broken Bridge construction, will ask Gerald about timing, and will see if we can involve TF City.

Other: CSI President Dean Fisher said the college has 200 acres along 93 and that SRCP could manage it for them. Bill said we should consider a parking lot there to provide alternate access to the North part of the park. Added that Charlie is trying to get a grant to buy 200 acres that belong to Bettencourt.

Reminder for Board Attendance, members can skip only two meetings per year. Greg suggested asking Board Member Rod Morgan his intentions in staying on the board.

Sue would like the Board to consider a specific tent-camping area adjacent to the RV spaces, suggesting the borrow area that runs along the fence as it is now graded. Greg suggested re-seeding it now. Sue will add it to the 5-year plan, placing it north of the Morley Arbor, utilizing 2 acres which could be 5-6 tent sites. Discussed security, leveling other areas, and bringing in fill dirt. Mike suggested contacting Tom Barker.

Meeting adjourned at 12:17 p.m.

Executive Sessions may be held pursuant to Idaho Code 74-206(1) as needed during time such sessions are called.

Note: Any person needing special accommodations to participate in the meeting should contact the committee secretary, 208-293-2426; 48 hours prior to the meeting.