Maidu to launch trial projects in Humbug Valley
Maidu Summit Consortium efforts to regain ancestral land in Humbug Valley made national news in a Tuesday, Nov. 15, Wall Street Journal article by Justin Scheck.
Summit members have been vying with the California Department of Fish and Game over the land, both claiming to want it for the best public uses, including recreation.
Both gave presentations in December 2010 to directors of the Pacific Forest and Watershed Lands Stewardship Council, the organization charged with conservation of about 140,000 acres of Pacific Gas and Electric Co. land.
Council directors were charged with disbursing the land, after PG&E declared bankruptcy, through a donation and stewardship program, which requires different holders of the fee title and conservation easement for each unit of land.
Maidu get the nod
The DFG plan called for the creation of a state wildlife area, and though the consortium does not have the state’s extensive experience and resources, it has been given the chance to prove itself before any donation is made.
Council directors agreed in September to a maximum of $200,000 in grant funding for consortium projects in Humbug that will enhance one or more of the beneficial public values of the property, according to Stewardship Council Regional Land Conservation Manager Heidi Krolick.
“The implementation of up to two projects will allow consortium members to demonstrate their ability to design, plan and implement significant projects,” Krolick said.
She provided examples of projects being considered, including an archeological resources protection plan, an interpretive kiosk and a forest health restoration project.
Summit members must prepare a proposal describing the enhancement projects and associated costs.
If the projects and proposal are found to be acceptable by the Stewardship Council and PG&E, Krolick said the council would enter into a grant agreement with the Summit to provide funding.
If all goes as planned, Summit work could start as early as 2012, with completion by early fall.
After that, the council planning committee will make a recommendation to the full council for fee title donation.
Maidu Summit/Humbug background
Area tribal and Mountain Maidu cultural organizations banded together back in 2007 in hopes their efforts would not only restore the land to them, but also help restore their cultural traditions.
They submitted a land management plan to the Stewardship Council that was covered in a series of Feather Publishing articles that ran from Aug. 27 through Oct. 1, 2008.
For more information about the Stewardship Council and its land conservation plans and processes, call (866) 791-5150 or visit stewardshipcouncil.org.
For more information about the Maidu Summit Consortium, call Lorena Gorbet at 375-0190 or Farrell Cunningham at 394-7868.
Or to read previous articles surrounding the Humbug unit, visit plumasnews.com. Type Maidu Consortium in the search box. Among the many results, view the following articles:
Native Americans seek PG&E land, 8/27/08
PG&E land would mend cultural strife, 9/10/08
For Maidu, there’s strength in numbers, 9/17/08
Maidu: Healing the land and themselves, 9/24/08
Maidu propose to manage lands, 10/1/08
County joins Maidu in quest for social justice, 11/4/09
Maidu and Forest Service vie for same PG&E land, 9/16/2010
DFG has plans for Humbug Valley, 12/15/2010