SHFPD ACCOMPLISHMENTS 2021
2021 was a busy year for the Sleepy Hollow Fire Protection District (SHFPD). Our mission is to safeguard our community through the delivery of professional, efficient, and effective services protecting life, property, and the environment. Most of our budget is used to support fire suppression and emergency medical services ($1,283,565). SHFPD directors Rich Shortall and Tom Finn represent Sleepy Hollow as voting members of the Ross Valley Fire Department Joint Powers Authority Board of Directors. Tom is also a director of the Ross Valley Paramedic Authority.
The SHFPD supports several programs that reduce the risk and hazard of wildfire in our community. The District established the Hazardous Vegetation Removal Grant Program to encourage Sleepy Hollow residents to create and maintain defensible space around their homes. The grant provided up to $3000 for removal of hazardous species of plants. The program is still accepting applications. The District, with support from the Marin Wildfire Prevention Authority, provided five opportunities for residents to remove flammable vegetation through curbside and dropoff chipper events. Large scale projects included the maintenance of fuel breaks and defensible space using goat grazing to reduce flammable vegetation along the Sleepy Hollow ridge tops and behind homes. Additional fuel break projects were completed at the San Domenico School and the Triple C Ranch.
The SHFPD became one of the first National Fire Protection Association recognized Firewise communities in Marin. Neighbors helping neighbors–this is what Firewise USA® is all about. Residents join together as a Firewise site and take actions to prepare themselves, their homes and their properties against the threat of wildfire. They look out for one another and provide those in need of assistance with help in emergency preparation. Our block captain program supports the Firewise program by having local leaders provide safety information and support to Sleepy Hollow residents. The District has provided most of the block captains with satellite phones that can be used to contact 911 if local communications are out. You can find a map with the addresses here. Our block captains are also responsible to help organize the annual evacuation drill. Please contact Sharon Adams if you are interested in helping with the program.
The new SHFPD office in the Sleepy Hollow Community Center is now almost complete. The office has several emergency communication systems including a high end satellite phone, Marin Emergency Radio Authority scanner, ham radio connection to the Marin Office of Emergency Services, and a local radio network for emergency communications within Sleepy Hollow. When construction is complete, we expect to have regular office hours open to the residents on weekends. The District has also funded fire smart demonstration landscaping for the site. When complete, there will be many varied and attractive examples of wildfire resistant plantings to improve the safety of your homes. The SHFPD has again set up the nearby sandbag station for residents.
The District will continue to provide wildfire safety and other disaster related information to our residents through this newsletter, our website and the block captain program. We strongly encourage residents to visit the Fire Safe Marin website and Youtube channel and to subscribe to their various social media for the latest wildfire safety news and information. The District will continue to host regular viewings at the Club House of their new streaming program called Wildfire Watch. The host and guests that appear on the program will be on hand for discussion with the attendees. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can find previous episodes here.