Officials from Fort Hunter Liggett (FHL) and neighboring communities have signed a series of partnership agreements to leverage each other’s resources and improve services at the installation and the surrounding region near the central California coast.
“We already have a history of working with many of these community partners,” said FHL Commander Col. Jan Norris. “These agreements [solidify] our partnerships and give us a platform to further enhance what we can do for each other.”
FHL and community partners have been meeting for the last four months to discuss potential partnerships which culminated with a signing ceremony at Hartnell College in King City, reported FHL Public Affairs. Two of the agreements address fire safety and encroachment.
FHL will assist the local Fire Safe Council and County Emergency Response Team by providing personnel to conduct fuel reduction activities outside the post. Activities will include clearing existing fire breaks and constructing an escape route for residents.
The installation will partner with the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo to identify parcels outside of FHL that could be protected through conservation easements under the Army’s Compatible Use Buffer Program. The two also will work with landowners to negotiate transactions.
Under a partnership under discussion, Mee Memorial Hospital would provide personnel to operate the post’s medical clinic at FHL. Separately, officials have discussed collaborating with the Salinas Valley Solid Waste Authority to supply woody biomass for the new waste-to-energy plant the post is building, FHL spokeswoman Amy Phillips told 360.
“What we’ve accomplished in just three meetings, to have almost a dozen contracts to sign, is an amazing feat,” said Charles Lubeshkoff of Marstel Day.
Marstel Day’s community partnership teams have helped more than 30 installations engage local leaders to reach partnering agreements with neighboring municipalities. Over the past four years, the environmental planning firm has identified more than 350 potential partnerships and coordinated more than 90 signed agreements for installations and surrounding communities.
“We do this by inviting stakeholders to workshops, identifying opportunities for partnerships, and facilitating the partners to transform the good ideas into enduring drafted agreements,” said Charles Bradshaw of Marstel Day.