Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy

Northeast Region
Plymouth, MA Fire Dept.
Resilient Landscapes - Fire-Adapted Communities - Safe and Effective Wildfire Response 
The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) provides executive leadership, coordination, and guidance to carry out the Northeast Regional Action Plan while providing a forum for members to guide strategic direction for fire and land management activities. The NE RSC continues to collaboratively recognize, support, and help with National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy goals and implementation efforts.
NE RSC Chair: Brad Simpkins, New Hampshire State Forester
In This Issue
Conferences and Meetings


 A Lake States and Tallgrass Prairie and Oak Savanna Fire Science Symposium 

Burning Issues: How do we integrate competing objectives in land management and restoration?

January 13-14, 2015

Fort Custer Training Center, Augusta, MI

Stewardship Network 2015 Conference
2015 Science, Practice, & Art of Restoring Native Ecosystems Conference
January 23-24, 2015
Kellogg Center
East Lansing, MI

2015 Midwest Fire Conference
Tallgrass Prairie and Oak Savanna Fire Science Consortium
February 17-19, 2015
Dubuque, IA 


Wildland Urban Interface Conference


March 20-24, 2015

Conference: March 24-26, 2015

Reno, NV

Managing Fire, Understanding Ourselves:  Human Dimensions in Safety and Wildland Fire

13th International Wildland Fire Safety Summit and 4th Human Dimensions of Wildland Fire

April 20-24, 2015

Boise Centre, Boise, ID 

5th Fire in Eastern Oak Forests Conference

May 27-29, 2015 Tuscaloosa, AL 


6th International Fire Ecology and Management Congress

Advancing Ecology in Fire Management: Knowledge Transfer through Workshops, Presentations, and Meetings
November 16-20, 2015 San Antonio, TX

Quick Links

Fire Adapted Communities Coalition

Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy Key Contacts
Brad Simpkins
New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands

172 Pembroke Road

PO Box 1856

Concord, NH 03302-1856


Terry Gallagher

Technical Working Group Lead

U.S. Forest Service Eastern Region


Maureen Brooks

Communications Working Group Lead

U.S. Forest Service Northeastern Area S&PF


Larry Mastic

Coordinator, Northeast Region

Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy  




The Northeast Regional Strategy Committee (NE RSC) delivers articles and stories each month that demonstrate the collaborative efforts of agencies, organizations and communities supporting and promoting the three goals of the Cohesive Strategy: Restoring Resilient Landscapes, Creating Fire Adapted Communities and Responding to Wildfire. 


This news update is our primary communication tool with our partners and the public. Looking for more Northeast Region Cohesive Strategy information or past published news update issues? Visit this Web site.


Does your agency, organization, or community have a project or event you'd like to see featured in the NE RSC News Update? 


Tell us about it! Just contact Larry Mastic.








November 2014

Eastern Area Assists with Western Wildfire Suppression in 2014

Eastern Area Coordination Center banner

The 20-state area in the Northeastern United States known as the Eastern Area (highlighted below) has a long history of providing resources for wildfires and all hazard incidents. The Eastern Area Coordination Center (EACC) had a busy summer in 2014 moving resources to western fires in southwestern, northern, and southern California; the Northern Rockies; Eastern Great Basin; and areas in the Northwest. Read more.


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Building Momentum for Fire Adapted Communities in Southern New Jersey

Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network Banner


A few weeks ago, I attended the annual wildfire preparedness meeting for Barnegat Township, New Jersey. In addition to my giving a presentation about the national Fire Adapted Communities (FAC) effort and the FAC Learning Network, I met many local FAC leaders. Like many other similar meetings I've attended, there were participants from local, State, and Federal agencies; community members and officials; and at least one journalist. John Cowie, the Barnegat Fire Company's fire prevention specialist, organized the meeting and served as moderator.


Maureen Brooks (U.S. Forest Service) and Shawn Stokes (International Association of Fire Chiefs) gave presentations, as did New Jersey State Forester Lynn Fleming. I was particularly impressed by the progress updates given by Firewise neighborhood liaisons. Bill Brash from the Mercer County (New Jersey) Soil Conservation District also gave a forward-looking talk that posed the question, "What will a New Jersey fire-adapted municipality look like in the future?" Attendees also learned about the history of the New Jersey Forest Fire Service and the wildfire history in and around Barnegat Township and Ocean County. 

Read more.

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FEMA Amends Fire Management Assistance Grant Program
A wildfire burns behind homes.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has amended the Fire Management Assistance Grant Program to provide grantees with additional flexibility in receiving reimbursement following a fire declaration.On October 24, 2014, FEMA published a Federal Register Notice formally modifying the program. These changes will become effective on November 24, 2014.

One program revision lengthens the extension period that a grantee can request for submitting a grant application to FEMA. It also lengthens the project worksheet submission period from the current 3 months to 6 months. This increases flexibility for applicants who may benefit from additional time to prepare the documentation necessary to support a grant application. It may also reduce or eliminate financial losses due to delayed invoices by third parties that exceed the maximum 3-month deadline extension. 

FEMA has also added the requirement that a fire or fire complex must be on public or private forest land or grassland in order for a State to receive a fire declaration. This requirement is mandated by section 420 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act and is FEMA's current practice. This program change also exempts project worksheets from the $1,000 project worksheet minimum for administrative costs, which enables FEMA to reimburse a project worksheet that has less than $1,000 for administrative costs only.

In March 2013, FEMA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the Federal Register requesting comments on these revisions to the program. The six comments received were generally supportive of the changes, and FEMA made no adjustments to the program changes based on the comments. 

U.S. Forest Service to use Prescribed Fire to Improve Wildlife Habitat

A group of firefighters perform a prescribed fire in the forest.
(Photo: U.S. Forest Service)

RUTLAND, VT. (October 16, 2014) - Green Mountain National Forest officials announced today that they, in partnership with local fire departments, are planning to use prescribed fire to treat approximately 75 to 100 acres of the more than 400,000-acre national forest. The Forest Service says that it will use prescribed fire as a management tool to reduce heavy accumulations of brush to restore critical wildlife habitat, regenerate early successional growth, and improve overall watershed conditions on the national forest in Vermont. Read the full news release.

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Webinar: The Effectiveness of Suppression Resources in Large Fire Management

Joint Fire Science Program logoDave Calkin presented this Webinar on October 8, 2014. Wildfire management currently represents over 50 percent of the U.S. Forest Service's total budget. Suppression of large fires is the single largest category of fire management and typically exceeds $1 billion annually. In both 2012 and 2013, suppressing large fires exceeded the Agency's budget allocations by over $400 million.


Despite the scale of this investment, relatively little is understood about how suppression actions influence the spread of large wildfires and the conditions that ultimately lead to their containment. There is considerable uncertainty in managing large wildfires, including:

  • Quality of weather forecasts 
  • Complex environmental conditions
  • Variation in the type and quality of suppression resources
  • Whether or not requested suppression resources will be assigned

This Webinar reviews several recent studies that attempt to understand how suppression actions influence fire progression as well as review variation among Incident Management Teams in the amount of resources that they use to manage large wildland fires in the United States.

Study results suggest that modeling large fire containment as a production process of fireline construction similar to traditional initial attack models is inappropriate.

Watch the webinar on YouTube to learn more:

The Effectiveness of Suppression Resources in Large Fire Management
The Effectiveness of Suppression Resources in Large Fire Management

Source: Friday Flash eNews, Issue 107 / October 17, 2014
Help Test the Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System

Fire logo (Research Supporting Sound Decisions.The fuels treatment planning community has 

expressed ongoing difficulties with trying to find, load, and learn all the different fuels and fire planning models--on top of the inefficiency of having to run, adjust, and input data specific to each model without the ability to easily share inputs/outputs between models.

For the last 7 years, the Joint Fire Science Program and its private sector partner, Sonoma Technology, Inc., of Petaluma, CA, have been working closely with fuels managers to ensure that ongoing development of upgrades to the Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System (IFTDSS) are focused firmly on meeting user needs and priorities. The result is IFTDSS V2.0 BETA.


For more information, visit the October 2014 issue of Firescience Digest and Interagency Fuels Treatment Decision Support System Web site.


Source: Friday Flash eNews, Issue 108 / 
October 24, 2014  
Fire Adapted Communities Featured in Fire Management Today

View the Forest Service publication Fire Management Today (PDF 17MB) and read more about wildland-urban interface fire risk mitigation through adapting communities to wildfire. See what our partners are doing and what a difference it's making on the ground.  


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U.S. Forest Service Calls for Bioenergy Products in Wildfire Country

U.S. Forest Service banner The U.S. Forest Service has requested proposals to substantially expand and accelerate wood energy and wood products markets throughout the United States to support forest management needs on National Forest System and other forest lands.

The grants and cooperative agreements awarded under this announcement will support the Agricultural Act of 2014 and the nationwide challenge of disposing of hazardous fuels and other wood residues from the National Forest System and other forest lands in a manner that supports wood energy and wood products markets.

The application deadline is Friday, January 23, 2015, at 11:59 p.m.

Learn more in the Federal Register, Vol. 79, No. 207, October 27, 2014.


Source: NASF E-Newsletter, October 31, 2014


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First Annual Wildfire Mitigation Awards: Guidelines and Criteria

Now Accepting Nominations!

The National Association of State Foresters, International Association of Fire Chiefs, and the National Fire Protection Association are pleased to announce the launch of the 2015 Wildfire Mitigation Awards.

The 2015 Wildfire Mitigation Awards were established in response to an overwhelming number of great wildfire mitigation program efforts. These awards are the highest national honor one can receive for outstanding work and significant program impact in wildfire mitigation. These awards recognize outstanding service in wildfire mitigation efforts and activities to increase public recognition and awareness of the need for continuing mitigation efforts. 

The 2015 nomination deadline is Friday, November 21, 2014. Awards will be presented at the Reno, NV, Wildland-Urban Interface Conference in March 2015.

Wildfire Mitigation Awards Guidelines and Criteria

Get started: Nomination Form


Amanda Cooke, National Association of State Foresters

Shawn Stokes, International Association of Fire Chiefs

Michele Steinberg, National Fire Protection Association


Tribal Relations Partnership Guide Available

Start a Partnership With the USDA Forest Service or Obtain Federal Financial Assistance--A Guide for Tribal Governments The U.S. Forest Service Office of Tribal Relations has published a guide, Start a Partnership With the USDA Forest Service or Obtain Federal Financial Assistance: A Guide for Tribal Governments. This publication will help tribal governments obtain financial assistance and work on projects in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In every region of the country, Tribal Relations Program Managers work with tribes on projects, including stewardship contracting, Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration projects, forest health and wildfire mitigation projects, and many more.

The guide describes the process for obtaining Federal financial assistance on projects and partnerships at the forest, unit, or station level. It also describes the many programs available. The guide is an important resource for restoring landscapes and protecting communities from wildfire and recognizes the importance of our tribal partners.

LANDFIRE is Seeking Your Updated Data by January 31, 2015
Landfire logo

A very important date is approaching to contribute data to the LANDFIRE database to improve the quality and value of information available to States. This action to improve LANDFIRE data was called for in the Northeast Region's Cohesive Strategy Regional Action Plan.

LANDFIRE has become the go-to database used to guide national decisions that could affect States. Data that is provided by January 31, 2015, will be used with new Landsat 8 imagery to map all lands. This is a critical date in particular for point data because LANDFIRE is planning and preparing for a remap, which will provide for wall-to-wall contemporary landscape conditions.

Read more.

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