Bret Campbell

Joel Gosswiller

Kevin Conran

Mission StatementUSIWG logo

The Upper Snake Interagency Wildfire Group (USIWG) intent is to promote collaboration among the interagency firefighting partners in the Upper Snake River Valley.  The overall goal of USWIG is to provide for a coordinated response and effective incident management on wildfires with a focus on emergency responder and public safety while protecting values at risk.

Membership

The membership is open to any city, county, state or federal entity with a desire to participate in and contribute to the overall mission, purpose and action of USIWG. Current members include:

North Fremont Fire DepartmentBonneville County Fire District #1
South Fremont Fire DepartmentBonneville County Fire District #2
Teton County Fire DistrictCounty Sheriff Offices
Madison Fire DepartmentCounty Commissioners
Idaho Falls Fire DepartmentCounty Emergency Managers
Ammon Fire DepartmentBonneville County Dispatch Center
Ucon Fire DepartmentEast Idaho Interagency Dispatch Center
INL Fire DepartmentOffice of Idaho State Fire Marshal
Swan Valley Fire DistrictIdaho Department of Lands
Alpine Fire DepartmentIdaho Bureau of Homeland Security
Shelly-Firth Fire DepartmentIdaho Falls District BLM
Central Fire DistrictCaribou-Targhee National Forest
Island Park Fire DepartmentClark County Fire Department
Blackfoot Fire DepartmentWest Jefferson Fire Department
Hammer Fire DepartmentRoberts Fire Department

Purpose

Wildfire has no respect to jurisdictional boundaries. USWIG recognizes this fact, so to combat this escalating risk posed by wildfire a thorough understanding of all cooperating agencies response and incident management capabilities is required. Understanding that the safest most effective response too wildfire risk is to improve and sustain both departmental and individual responsibilities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from wildfire. This is done through training, education, prevention, hazard mitigation and capacity-building activities.

  • Cooperative training exercises and/or simulations that facilitate better coordination and unified command on multi-jurisdictional or wildland urban interface incidents.
  • Improve radio communications between local and federal agencies due to the incompatible communication systems used by both entities.
  • Streamline procedures for wildfire response, mutual aid requests, and ongoing incident management between dispatch centers.
  • Joint fire prevention, education and mitigation with communities and homeowners regarding fire wise concepts and continually working towards fire adapted communities.
  • Development of wildland urban interface codes.
  • Collaboration between city, state and federal entities striving to restore and maintain fire resilient landscapes across jurisdictional boundaries.
  • Improve processes related to wildfire response and management in areas where there is “Unprotected Land” issues (or areas where there is no responsible fire agency).

USIWG Chair and Vice Chair Term

The USIWG will elect a Chairperson and Vice Chairperson for a two-year term.  Terms will be on a calendar year basis (January 1 to December 31); at the end of the Chairperson’s term the Vice Chairperson will automatically become the new Chair and a new Vice Chair will be elected. It is desirable, but not required, that one of the officer positions be held by a representative of a local fire agency and the other being represented by a member of a state or federal agency.
To allow for the most flexibility in the Chair and Vice Chair positions, the members of the group may re-elect an individual to continue serving in the Chair and Vice Chair positions to ensure continuity of the group, maintain progress in action items, and provide continued leadership for the benefit of the group.

During the nomination and election processes, it is important to assess the nominee’s ability to fulfill the duties and responsibilities of the position which is in addition to the incumbent’s regular work duties and obligations.  This will help to ensure it is reasonable and attainable for the individual nominated to meet the expectations of the position.

The Vice Chair will assume the duties of the Chair when the Chair is absent.  The Vice Chair will also be responsible to ensure the Annual Operating Plan is completed annually.

The Chair and Vice Chair may set up subcommittees or task groups and/or assign specialists to assist as needed.  The subcommittee, task group or specialist upon completion of its task, shall disband unless an additional task is assigned.  Subcommittees to consider may include but not limited to communication, training exercise, and safety/standards subcommittee.  Each subcommittee would have an individual that would be the lead or point of contact for the committee.

Secretary

The Secretary position will be solicited and appointed every two years by the Chair.  The Secretary will be responsible to take meeting notes and provide them to the Chair or Vice Chair for distribution to the Group.