Hidden Lake, 15 miles south of Angel Fire, has received a $50,000 Wildfire Risk Reduction and a $15,000 CWPP update grant under the New Mexico Association of Counties (NMAC) 2015-2016 Wildfire Risk Reduction Grant Program.

Funding for this program is provided by the National Fire Plan (NFP) through the Bureau of Land Management in cooperation with the NMAC. The grant is for thinning and hazardous fuels clean-up on several properties on Hidden Lake and an update to their 2006 CWPP. We would like to thank the NMAC and BLM for their generous support in furthering our fire mitigation program which has been underway for the past ten years. Hidden Lake has been a nationally recognized Firewise communities for 10 years and is a member of the Colfax County Coalition of Firewise Communities.

 

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      The single largest risk our communities face is catastrophic wildfire – we are preparing to survive such a fire with the help of NMAC. Thinning of dense stands on untreated lots will be given priority over cleanup of dead and downed material. The goal is to thin standing timber on the maximum number of acres; remove or chip small understory growth; and clean up dead and downed material. The primary objective of the Hazardous Fuels Reduction project is to reduce wildfire hazard by thinning and removal of dense, diseased, and malformed live trees, and dead trees both standing and down with exceptions for snags and downed logs for wildlife habitat.

      This grants are a generous 90/10 cost-sharing grant: 90% of the cost will be paid with NFP funds administered by the Hidden Lake Property Owners Association (HLPOA), with the remaining 10% provided by property owners as cash or “in-kind.” Property owners who choose to participate as “in-kind” will provide a simple accounting of time spent on labor, and expenses incurred in working to “Firewise” their properties. The HLPOA has notified local contractors who will perform the major thinning and cleanup operations. For more information, call Joe Stehling 575-377-0546. Submitted by: Joe Stehling, Hidden Lake Firewise Coordinator.

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