El Dorado County Resource Advisory Committee

Resource Advisory Committee logoThe Secure Rural Schools Resource Act Advisory Committee (RAC) provides recommendations to the Forest Service on the development and implementation of special projects on federal lands as authorized under the Secure Rural Schools Act and Community Self-Determination Act in Public Law 110-343.   Each RAC consists of 15 people representing varied interests and areas of expertise, who work collaboratively to improve working relationships among community members and national forest personnel.


Status

  • April 1, 2022: News Release - REMINDER: El Dorado County Resource Advisory Committee Requests Project Proposals that Benefit Federal Lands
  • March 4, 2022: News Release - Accepting Project Proposals: March 4, 2022 through April 15, 2022.
  • January 27, 2022: News Release - Forest Service Seeks Nominations for El Dorado County Resource Advisory Committee -- Applications requested by March 1
  • December 1, 2021: 1 project was selected and approved by the Committee. Forest Supervisor has approved it.
  • November 19, 2021: Congress reauthorized Secure Rural Schools payments for fiscal years 2021-2023.
  • July 22, 2021: News Release - Conservation Grant Funding Available through the El Dorado Resource Advisory Committee
  • April 27, 2021: 12 projects were selected and approved by the Committee. Forest Supervisor approved.
  • March 5, 2021: News Release - Accepting Project Proposals: March 5 through April 16, 2021
  • The El Dorado County Resource Advisory Committee was approved in late August of  2020.
  • The national Secure Rural Schools Act Resource Advisory Committee Charter was signed in October of 2019. The SRS Act was last reauthorized for a two year extension April 16, 2015 (in section 524 of P.L. 114-10). 
  • The Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 reauthorized payments for fiscal years 2019 and 2020.

Background

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Understanding the Secure Rural Schools Program?

The Secure Rural Schools program provides critical funding for schools, roads, and other municipal services to more than 700 counties across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

The Forest Service was established in 1905 with 56 million acres of land. By 1910, the amount of National Forest System land tripled to 172 million acres. Today, the agency manages approximately 196 million acres. Congress ratified the Act of May 23, 1908, as a measure to support rural counties whose tax base was limited by the growing amount of Federal land. A portion of Forest Service funds generated through multi-use activities, such as grazing, timber production, and special use permits, are distributed to eligible counties to help maintain local roads and schools.

By the year 2000, after decades of declining agency revenues, Congress passed the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act to help stabilize the funds available to rural counties.

Payments are divided into three distinct categories, or Titles: Title I for roads and schools, Title II for projects on Federal lands, and Title III for county projects. 

For further information check out the SRS website:

What is a Secure Rural Schools Resource Advisory Committee?

Under title II of the Act the Secretary of Agriculture may establish a Secure Rural Schools resource advisory committee for part of a national forest or for one or more national forests to ensure that each national forest on which special projects are proposed has access to a RAC.

Secure Rural Schools RACs were first established under the “Secure Rural School and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-393). Authorization for those committees expired September 30, 2006.  In 2007 the Act was extended for one year in Public Law 110-28.

In October 2008 the Act was amended and reauthorized for four years, federal fiscal years 2008-2011 and again in 2012 and 2013 under P.L.110-343.  It authorized the Secretary of Agriculture to reactivate the Secure Rural Schools Act resource advisory committees that were in place prior to September 29, 2006 and to establish new RACs as appropriate.

For further information check out these websites:

Where does the funding come from?

Each county in an eligible state must elect to receive one of the following payments:

  • a share of the state’s 25-percent payment, OR
  • a share of the “State payment”.

25-percent - Since 2008 the 25-percent payment has been based  on a 7-year rolling average national forest receipts, distributed among the counties in which the national forest is situated in proportion to acreage of national forest in the affected counties.  25-percent payments must be used for public schools and roads in accordance with 16 U.S.C. 500. Under 16 U.S.C. 500, the State has broad discretion as to how to allocate the payment for public schools and roads, including authorizing the county to make the allocation.

State payment - The county share of the Secure Rural Schools Act State payment must be allocated according to the guidelines below to be used for public schools and roads (commonly called title I funds), title II special projects on national forests, and title III county funds to be used for Firewise communities activities, to reimburse counties for emergency services on the national forests and for development of community wildfire protection plans.  More information on authorized uses of title II funds for Special Projects and title III, County Funds is posted elsewhere on this web site.

What type of projects can this funding be used for?

Title II funds may be used for the for protection, restoration, and enhancement of fish and wildlife habitat, and other resource objectives consistent with the Act on Federal land and on non-Federal land where projects would benefit the resources on Federal land.

The purposes of the Act include making additional investments in, and creating employment opportunities through title II funded projects that:

  • improve the maintenance of existing infrastructure;
  • implement stewardship objectives that enhance forest ecosystems; and
  • restore and improve land health and water quality;

The funds may be used for projects that enjoy broad based support and have objectives that may include--

  • road, trail, and infrastructure maintenance or obliteration;
  • soil productivity improvement;
  • improvements in forest ecosystem health;
  • watershed restoration and maintenance;
  • the restoration, maintenance, and improvement of wildlife and fish habitat;
  • the control of noxious and exotic weeds; and
  • the re-establishment of native species.

Planning and implementing the projects should help improve cooperative relationships among the people that use and care for Federal land and the agencies that manage the Federal land.

Resource Advisory Committee Topics

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El Dorado County Resource Advisory Committee

The Eldorado County Resource Advisory Committee was established in 2010. This Committee has worked through 5 funding cycles.

  • In 2011, they selected 18 projects for the 2008 to 2010 funding years.
  • In 2012, they selected 8 projects for the 2011 to 2012 funding years.
  • In 2014, they selected 6 projects for the 2013 funding year.
  • In 2016, they selected 13 projects for the 2014 to 2015 funding years.
  • In 2020, projects from the previous funding cycle were awarded additional funding from the 2017 to 2018 funding years. These were projects approved and funded or approved if additional funding was available by the previous committee.
  • Although their term was originally for 4 years, the original committee was extended to 6 years and expired in the fall of 2016. The Eldorado National Forest outreached for new Committee members in 2017 and submitted the package for Washington Office approval in 2018/19. The new committee was approved in late August of 2020 and started operation in December of 2020.
  • In 2021, they selected 13 projects in the spring and 1 in the fall for the 2019 to 2020 funding years.

Check out the Committee page for more information regarding duties and applying for committee membership.

Meetings and Agendas

Agendas, meeting notes, documents, and location.

Project Application Process

Approved Projects

Monitoring and Accomplishment Reports


Contacts

RAC COORDINATOR

Jennifer Chapman, Public Affairs Officer
100 Forni Road
Placerville, CA 95667
530-957-9660
Email

DESIGNATED FEDERAL OFFICIAL

Jeff Marsolais, Forest Supervisor
4260 Eight Mile Road
Camino, CA 95709
530-621-5205
Email