[ODF_Private_Forests] Re-evaluation and Rebuilding of ODF Private Forests
kevin.weeks at state.or.us
Wed Jul 6 11:48:20 PDT 2011
Private Forests News subscribers:
Acting Private Forests Division chief Peter Daugherty sent this update to ODF staff on Friday July 1 regarding the rebuilding of the Private Forests Program within the Oregon Department of Forestry.
Oregon Department of Forestry
I am pleased to be sharing good news about the Private Forests program, and how we'll initiate the re-evaluation and rebuilding of our program.
ODF's budget for the 2011-13 biennium, which begins today, has been approved by the Legislature and signed by the Governor. As discussed in Doug Decker's recent message, the budget contains good news for Private Forests. The budget restores significant resources for administration of the Forest Practices Act (FPA), related effectiveness monitoring, and the forest health unit. The budget reverses most of the reductions of the past few years, potentially returning staffing in the program approximately to 2007-2009 levels.
The budget also came with two budget notes which require us to closely examine the efficiency and effectiveness of our administration of the FPA. We have been directed to contract with an independent third party to assess and make recommendations on cost savings, efficiencies, and cost avoidance strategies. While we have been given additional resources, they come with the expectation that we will build a leaner, more efficient and effective forest practices program.
We have started the work on a plan for rebuilding Private Forests, working closely with our stakeholders, many of whom provided their support of ODF by talking to the Legislature about the need for full funding of ODF's 2011-13 budget. The first phase of rebuilding started this week. We will be hiring 12 stewardship foresters as quickly as possible to increase critically needed field capacity and retain valued expertise of those folks working in limited duration positions. A stewardship forester position will be added to each district, with the exception of Tillamook, which did not lose capacity in the 2009-10 staff reductions.
As we have done throughout this period of budget adjustments, the Executive Team recognizes the significant value of the people who work for the agency and will make every effort to minimize impacts of budget implementation on employees. In implementing this first phase of adding stewardship foresters, we determined that the most equitable approach was to recruit all 12 positions at the same time. The Human Resources staff will first be contacting employees on the layoff list from the 2009-10 reductions to provide them the opportunity to exercise their recall rights for positions to which they are eligible. Once that process concludes, remaining openings would go out for open recruitment.
I have started the work for a second phase of restoring stewardship forester capacity. I will be coordinating with the Area Directors to evaluate expected workloads and determine where we see a need to add capacity. This analysis will be coordinated with an efficiency and effectiveness review, and stakeholder input to ensure that we are rebuilding a credible program that has full support of our stakeholders. We envision the second-phase evaluation to be completed quickly, with the expectation to hire 7 to 10 additional stewardship foresters in 3 to 6 months.
Thanks for your help, and for your hard work.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Private_Forests