Wildfire preparedness - 1 day workshops

Idaho Department of Lands, University of Idaho and Idaho Smart Growth have teamed up to provide six Idaho communities with one-day workshops to review and assess their level of wildfire preparedness and set next step actions in place for further planning. This project is funded in part by the Idaho Department of Lands in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service. Learn more about this program here.

Communities will be required to support their workshop by providing a location and ensuring participation from the following stakeholders – elected officials, community planners, fire, police, land management agencies (local, state, federal), emergency management (county and city), business owners, chamber members, economic development, soil and water conservation districts, RC&Ds, land trusts, land owners (forest, farm, ranch) and interested citizens.

Communities who can commit to these requirements will be selected based on our goals to hold these in different parts of the state to allow more individuals to attend and observe and to look at diverse geographies and also hope to conduct two that are rural, two that are more suburban and two that are more urban.

Each community workshop will be set up as a “fishbowl.” This means that while the focus will be on a specific community, members of other communities may attend to observe and learn what they can to take back to their community.

Outcomes for communities who are selected will include:

  • Review of existing wildfire preparedness
    • Were all stakeholders involved with developing their county’s community wildfire protection plan?
    • If you have multiple wildfire planning efforts are these connected?
    • Are all agencies collaborating on wildfire planning?
    • Have opportunities for improvements been identified if a fire does come to their community?
  • Identify additional planning they need/want to do to improve their wildfire preparedness and resiliency
  • Identify who needs to be further engaged
  • Prioritize strategies to improve prevention and recovery such as education, building codes, land use decisions, mitigation, revegetation, etc.

If selected, we will work with your community to identify the specific scope for your planning workshop. In preparation we will review any plans that might and/or should comment on wildfire in the WUI such as comprehensive plans, hazardous mitigation plans, emergency management plans, your county’s Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP) and other relevant plans your community has in order to understand what plans are in place, help you assess how coordinated these plans are and identify where there are gaps and /or contradictions. We will also conduct interviews with key stakeholders as identified by your community in preparation for this planning day.

If you’re interested in this one-day workshop to assess how prepared your community is for wildfire on the edge of development and determine what additional planning you want to do to improve their wildfire preparedness and resiliency fill out this form and send to Deanna@idahosmartgrowth.org by April 15th.