Arid Regions Policy Committee
Tuesday November 1, 2011
9:00 – 10:00 AM Pacific Time
Dial-in number: 1-218-936-4700, Access Code: 35663 (9 am PDT, 11 am CDT, 12 pm EDT)
1. Introductions and Welcome – roll call by state to identify new participants.
 No new members present on roll call.
2. Solicitation of a volunteer to take summary notes and post them on the Arid Regions
 Clint Roos to take summary notes. Talks are ongoing with executive office to
determine recording capabilities of the phone system.
3. Planning for next Arid Regions conference, proposed for 2013. Arizona Chapter has
formed a subcommittee to identify potential locations. (Valarie Swick)
Subcommittee is currently forming
Valerie is looking at shortlisted sites
o Scottsdale Resort Center
o Fort McDowell (Selected location per AFMA Board vote)
Preliminarily scheduled for October 15-18, 2013.
4. Volunteers to participate on conference planning committee and leader to identify the
theme and coordinate with Arizona FMA. Potential themes include the fire – flood
connection in Arid Regions.
Asked for more volunteers for the 2013 Conference, if interested send Jeanne
and Bob an email.
Kathryn Gross, Teri George and Mark Forest expressed interest in joining the
planning committee.
5. Status of the Alluvial Fan Discussion Paper Working Group Sub-Committee– Several
people have expressed interest in participating in this working group. We are still
formulating how the group would be most effective, and would like to solicit
suggestions in writing for the committee to consider. Some options include;
If you want to be involved, state your objectives and email Bob and Jeanne.
Timeframe extended through the end of November.
Massoud – How many members do you envision to be on the Sub-Committee?
o Bob – Need to keep to a manageable size, 10 members or so.
o Siavash thought 6-8 people would be a good number with 1 person acting
as a facilitator. A memo could then be created outlining the
recommendations that are to be pursued (i.e. stating objectives, etc.)
Anthony Barry – who will make decision as to who will be selected to serve on
the Committee?
o Bob – Those who want to contribute send a note. 3-4 people have
submitted an email so far. As long as there isn’t an overwhelming
number of people everyone can be included.
Results of committee findings potentially presented at next Arid Regions
Massoud – Was there any discussion/investigation on separating the Arid Region
o Bob – At this point there will not be a separation. There is a great
economy of scale afforded by combining a tri-annual meeting with a biannual FMA meeting, which is important in this economy.
Mark Forest – How was the last FMA meeting formed?
o Bob – Iovanka tried making a separate symposium for Arid Region topics.
A committee was solicited but a better job could have been done sending
to other regions.
Mark – The Arid Regions elements of the Henderson FMA conference were not
discernable to the participants as an independent event. It appeared that all of
the sessions were part of the FMA sponsored conference. An Arid Regions
meeting should not be planned by the state or regional chapter, but should be
planned by the Arid Regions Committee. How do we improve upon the last
conference if the Arid Regions conference is going to be done as a part of the
AFMA conference? Note (Bob): By taking an active part in the technical program
planning part of the Arid Regions 2013 meeting, you will have a good
opportunity to influence the makeup of the meeting.
o Bob – There is an overlap of topics and not everyone can afford to attend
all conferences. Henderson was combined due to economic reasons in
order to reduce cost of a separate conference on another date and
different location.
o An active interest and support will allow for great planning. FMA and
AFMA both have had good tracts.
Mark – It was suggested during our last call that important topics of interest
should start with the development of a problem statement based on a factfinding approach that solicits the input from arid regions organizations. Once
you develop a problem statement, then the work of the committee or
subcommittee that is developing work products has a more defined objective
statement(s). The resulting document would then include the pre-defined
problem statements and objectives that came from the fact-finding effort, a
review of previously prepared documents on the topic that are relevant to the
objectives, gaps in the existing research, recommendations for additional
research, and recommendations for policy processes needed to address the
topics of interest.
Anthony – Identify and quantify failures (what is not working now) and see how we can fix it.
Recommendations were stated first without agreeing that there is a problem in the first place.
Note (Bob): This comment refers to the interest to revisit the Need for Updating Alluvial Fan
Floodplain Delineation Guidelines: A Discussion Paper. This paper has been vetted through the
ASFPM review process. Further discussion on topics related to content in that paper can be
articulated through committee discussions and possibly new work products henceforth such as
discussion papers, etc.
o Siavash – The activities that the Committee takes on and the products it
works on comes from the Committee’s work plan. If desired, the work
plan can be updated, perhaps with the line of thinking that Mark and
Anthony are discussing. Goals and objectives, as well as the activities, of
a committee should be prioritized and reflected in the work plan.
o Siavash talked about his role as a pod facilitar/coordinator for the
activities within committees. He coordinates the activities of ASFPM
technical policy committees and reports to and advises upper leadership
Anthony – Can we redo the discussion paper?
o Siavash – Every year, the activities that committee is proposing to take on
is specified and prioritized in the work plan. Committees provide input to
the overall goals and objectives for ASFPM. Then activities needed to
fulfill those goals and objectives are assigned to each committee to
become part of their work plan. The committee can also add other
objectives of their interest into the work plan. This was likely how the
need for development of specific white papers was included in the
committee’s work plan. Work plan can be updated periodically as
committee sees fit. A work plan is set every year to coincide with the
overall ASFPM goals and objectives but the committee can revisit the
work plan. There is no prohibition of updating a work plans or
developing a new/revising a discussion paper when the need arises.
o Anthony – The group convening will set goals and objectives pertinent to
alluvial fans. Asked if the Committee name can be changed to alluvial fan
working group sub-committee. Recommended that we start over and
not be restricted by the discussion paper recommendations.
o Siavash – My original understanding was that the committee wanted to
prioritize and go over the implementation steps of the Alluvial Fan
discussion paper recommendations. However, this may also be an
acceptable approach if that is what the committee wants to do.
o Bob - Can name the committee whatever we want. We just do not want
to redo the discussion paper.
o Siavash – There was a discussion paper which has gone through the
board in the format it did. If the committee now feels a need to expand
on it, prioritize its recommendations, or revisit it using a more holistic
approach, they can do so. There is nothing wrong with reevaluating what
was placed in the discussion paper if the committee feels strongly the
priority and need for such a re-evaluation.
o Anthony – Had been told by Jeanne and Bob that the paper is not
changeable. The discussion paper had been submitted but another, more
holistic approach can be used.
o Siavash – This was discussed at the Committees co-chair retreat in August
and it was decided that there is no point in recalling the discussion paper.
It may be best to focus on where the committee wants to go from here.
According to the way the ASFPM defines it now, a discussion paper
should not have conclusive recommendations as it did. Its goal is to
encourage discussion on an issue. It can be viewed as a dynamic
document that can be followed up with more focused discussion papers
or white papers. In the next month an overview of what a discussion
paper is expected to come out and assist what is expected of a discussion
Clint – Have we reached out to other regions/organizations for being part of the
alluvial fan committee?
o Bob - Emails sent to Diane Calhoun (Texas) and Colorado organizations
for input.
a. Forming an informal group of interested committee members with a regular
meeting time and a charter;
b. Forming a more formal group of interested committee members & noncommittee members to have a series of facilitated workshops to go over the
c. Using the next Arid Regions Conference as a forum to explore the
recommendations in detail.
6. Status of the draft Erosion Zone Discussion Paper. The paper was presented at the
ASFPM conference. Comments will be provided to the primary authors for
consideration, and posted to the website. The next steps are to submit to the other
policy committees for review.
Tabled to next month. Bob to get a handle on how this is moving forward next
Siavash recommended that the Erosion Zone Discussion Paper be put on hold
until new guidance is released in regards to preparing a discussion paper.
8. Solicitation of volunteers to help to shape a survey of committee members about
future action items for the committee to include in the workplan.
Valerie to follow-up on this. If additional members want to help provide input,
please email Jeanne and Bob.
Anthony – Let Valerie know that changes to the work plan will be forthcoming
based upon the discussion today.
Bob - Changes can be accommodated in the work plan but uncertain how much
can be changed this year.
Siavash – Work plans are revised every year. If additional items need to be
placed into the work plan they can be made at any time.
9. Identify Action Items
Clint to provide meeting minutes
Continue research into phone system
Emails to Jeanne and Bob due end of November if interested in being part of the
alluvial fan committee. Only 3-4 emails received prior to conference call.
10. Next meeting date
December 6, 2011

Arid Regions Policy Committee Agenda Tuesday November 1, 2011