Governance Document

Olympic Peninsula Collaborative (OPC) Governance

May 8, 2015

 

Purpose and Goals

 

The Olympic Peninsula Collaborative will bring together stakeholders from the environmental community, the timber industry, and representatives from federal and local government around shared goals of increasing timber harvest from the Olympic National Forest while benefitting the environmental quality of our forests and watersheds. The Collaborative will work together and with federal officials to address issues that stand in the way of achieving the stated goals. Ultimately, the purpose is to show we can simultaneously create a more environmentally sound forest, provide for increased, sustainable timber harvests on the Olympic National Forest, and provide economic benefits to timber communities on the Peninsula.

 

Goals include:

 

  • Increasing the amount of acres treated and total harvest volume produced in forest restoration projects under the Northwest Forest Plan and increasing the number and footprint of aquatic and other non-thinning related restoration projects.
  • Creating a framework of agreement on the type and locations of forest restoration treatments that benefit the ecosystem and provide for increased harvest levels under the Northwest Forest Plan.
  • Improving treatment effectiveness and working to reduce the time and cost required to plan and prepare projects through increased efficiencies for the Forest Service.
  • Creating a framework of agreement around innovative forest practices, treatments and techniques that integrate ecological, social, and economic goals, and exploring whether the Adaptive Management Area (AMA) established under the Northwest Forest Plan provides an opportunity to test these alternative approaches.
  • Collaborating on specific projects, as needed, to create an environment that reduces conflict and seeks to achieve a common vision about the future of the Olympic National Forest.
  • Creating a forum for addressing any problems that stand in the way of accomplishing our stated goals with the active involvement of federal elected and agency officials.

 

Organizational Structure

 

General Membership:

The OPC will be made up of voting (Board of Directors) and non-voting members.

Members from diverse backgrounds and interests are welcome, but all members must abide by the stated Purpose and Goals of the OPC as outlined above.

New Members can be added by a unanimous vote of the Board of Directors.

 

Board of Directors:

The Board will consist of no more than 20 individuals who are directly and actively engaged in issues relating to the environment, natural resources, and economy of the Olympic Peninsula as they relate to the Purpose and Goals of the Collaborative.

Board Members serve on an uncompensated basis.

To be eligible for election to the Board, a member must be in good standing, having attended at least 2/3 of the board meetings in the previous 6 months.

 

The initial membership of the Board will consist of representatives of the organizations engaged with the Collaborative on January 31st, 2014. These include:

 

American Forest Resource Council

American Whitewater

Cosmo Specialty Fibers

Interfor

Merrill & Ring

The Mountaineers

Murphy Company

Olympic Park Associates

Olympic Forest Coalition

Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society

Pew Charitable Trusts

Sierra Pacific Industries

Washington State Society of American Foresters

Washington Wild

Wild Olympics Campaign

 

The Board may create committees and delegate specific tasks and responsibilities to the members of that committee.

 

Officers:

The Board will consist of following representatives, provided the specific interest group selects and delegates a representative(s) to participate and serve on the Board:

The Board will consist of roughly equal representation from the forest products industry and conservation groups (3-5 members per interest group). In addition, members representing local & state government, tribes, economic development, and labor may be on the board.

 

Members of the Board may designate an alternate representative to fill in for Board Member in times of short term absence. Short Term absence is defined as 3 or less consecutive meetings.

 

Members of the Board will serve a term of 24 months. Members may serve for multiple terms provided they are in good standing with the Collaborative.

 

A member of the Board may be removed for cause from the Board by a vote of 2/3 of the Board of Directors. Cause may include lack of attendance at meetings and failure to abide by the Purpose and Goals of the Collaborative outlined above.

 

The Board will elect among its Members the positions identified below. Terms will be 24 months.

 

Co-Chair – Industry

Co-Chair – Conservation

Vice-Chair

Secretary or Coordinator

 

In the absence of a Coordinator the responsibilities of setting times and locations for meetings, creating and circulating a meeting agenda, and distributing records/minutes of meetings shall reside with the Co-Chairs.

 

The responsibilities of the Co-Chairs shall be to preside over Board meetings and the general business dealing of the Board.

 

Responsibilities of the Vice-Chair include assisting the Co-Chairs as directed and filling in for a Co- Chair in the event of an absence.

 

The Secretary/Coordinator shall be responsible for keeping a record of decisions made by the Board. In the absence of a Facilitator, the Secretary shall also be responsible for maintaining minutes of the Board meetings.

 

The Board may also elect other officers, as needed.

 

Coordinator:

The duties of the Coordinator shall include the following:

 

  • Assist Co-Chairs in facilitation of OPC meetings: prepare meeting agendas, develop meeting materials and packets, reserve meeting locations, invite guest speakers with input from OPC members, ensure minutes are recorded, send reminder emails;
  • Track progress of various subcommittees; ensure milestones and deadlines are met;
  • Become familiar with OPC files and make recommendations to Board concerning central repository or continual record keeping strategy;
  • Encourage active and productive participation of all collaborative members at meetings;
  • Assist Co-chairs in Coordinating 2-3 field trips including stewardship contracting and restoration project planning tours with US Forest Service (USFS) staff and OPC members;
  • Work with OPC Board to develop outreach tools including press releases and open houses; coordinate with OPC Board in regards to media;

 

Standing Non-Voting Members:

At least one designee from the US Forest Service and the Office of Rep. Derek Kilmer (or his successor) will be invited to be a non-voting participant at each Board meeting.

The Role of the Forest Service at a minimum will consist of:

 

  • Serving as a non-voting member
  • Be committed to collaborative process and maintain active engagement at meetings, project planning, etc.
  • Offer resource information
  • Share historical data, local knowledge and technical resource expertise
  • Share experience working with local contractors

 

The role of Rep. Derek Kilmer’s (or his successor’s) office at a minimum will consist of:

 

  • Serving as a non-voting member
  • Be committed to collaborative process and maintain active engagement at meetings, project planning, etc.
  • Share knowledge about potential benefits to local constituents

 

Consultants:

The Board may secure the services of Consultants to carry out work approved by the Board. The Consultants will attend all Board Meetings as needed, and update the Co-Chairs and Vice Chair regularly on his or her activities. The Board can approve additional staff to assist the Consultant on either a volunteer or paid basis.

 

Meetings:

The Board will meet at least once per quarter, either in person or via conference call, with at least two meetings per year taking place in person.  In person meetings will be open to the public, including non-voting participants. Work groups established by the board can meet on a more frequent basis.

 

No official decisions can be made without a quorum. A quorum is defined as fifty percent of the Board Members plus one.

 

The OPC will make decisions on the basis of consensus and agreement among the Board Members present. The goal of the decision-making process is to come to a decision that members can support following a respectful hearing of all concerns. The collaborative will make decisions using a process of modified consensus. Consensus is achieved when all voting members can support or, at minimum, live with a decision.

 

Non-voting members may be invited to attend Board Meetings to provide technical assistance necessary for the accomplishment of OPC goals.

 

General Membership meetings may be explored in the future based on need and non-voting member participation.

 

Media Relations

In the event that media have an interest in attending meetings, the following expectations will apply:

  • Full disclosure of media at each meeting
  • Listen
  • Share experience and expertise relative to publicity and public information
  • Non-voting role

 

All communications by members of the collaborative with the news media concerning these discussions will be only by agreement of the group.

 

Collaborative members will be mindful of the impacts of their public and private statements will have on the climate of this effort, especially those on open social media. No participant will attribute suggestions, comments or ideas of another participant to the news media or non-participants, especially through open social media.