Portal Rescue-Agenda - Minutes

Portal Rescue Inc.

Meeting Minutes

September 13, 2019

Attending: Board members Cary Booth, Bill Wilbur, Jackie Lewis, David Newton, Victor Shawe, John Yerger, and Dinah Davidson, and active member Lee Dyal.

  1. The meeting was called to order by President Cary Booth at 6:04 pm.

  1. Adoption of agenda

The agenda was adopted unchanged after a motion by Jackie and a second by John.

  1. Minutes of board meeting for September 23, 2019

The minutes were adopted unchanged after a motion by Cary and a second by Victor.

  1. Reports (inclusive of project updates)

  1. VP Report: Bill Wilbur

    1. Bay doors: Repair of the south door is awaiting arrival of parts (ETA Friday) and also crew availability (next week at the earliest). When the crew arrives, they will also look at the north door to determine why it appears to be off track, and whether the track needs to be reinforced. Rescue 4 is currently in the fire building but is in the way of some of the three first out fire vehicles. If it is returned to the ambulance bay, we must be sure to have it out of the way of the door crew.
    2. Bill and David will try to install remainder of classroom lights prior to Chiefs Luncheon.
    3. Bill will bring his tractor up to mow tall grass behind building, and Victor will string-trim the edges.

    1. Fire Chief: David Newton

      1. There have been no operations since the September board meeting.
      2. October training was moderately well attended.
      3. There have been no changes to vehicles.
      4. To prepare for the possibility that the Arizona Dept. of Forestry will offer fuels reduction grants in the future, David will meet with a USFS representative this week to define the possible path for a fuel break adjacent to federal lands SE of Portal.

    1. EMS Chief: John Yerger

      1. John recognized and thanked Jackie for taking on a considerable work load as Assistant Chief (essentially acting chief) during his months-long absence.
      2. Portal Rescue has responded to four calls since the September board meeting.
      3. John will circulate the biennial renewal form for the TMC base hospital agreement by email and, barring any objections, will sign it on Portal Rescue's behalf. It is basically unchanged from the prior version.
      4. Our relationship with Hidalgo County EMS is improving, and there are opportunities for joint training in the future. (Chief Jared attended our last training.) Dispatch issues remain to be ironed out in order for us to better serve Rodeo. All Portal Rescue EMTs who are licensed in NM now need to file some paperwork in order for Hidalgo to allow us to continue responding in the Rodeo area; 4 of 6 EMTs are already NM licensed, and we’re working on completing the paperwork for all 4.
      5. An Hidalgo County Emergency Medical Responders (EMR) class will be held next month. John is currently working to clarify how EMRs may be able to help Portal Rescue, should our personnel choose to take the class. EMRs differ from EMTs in having less training (56-hrs vs. 256-hrs). NM EMRs can do almost as much as EMTs, but AZ EMRs can’t do as much, because they don’t serve under medical direction by base hospitals. They are primarily ambulance attendants, equivalent to our drivers.
      6. There may also be a full EMT class in the spring.If you know people who might consider taking the class and serving with us as an EMT, please have them contact John.

  1. Treasurer: Jackie Lewis

    1. Numbers here were updated after the meeting to reflect the most current status of our accounts.
    2. Year to date income: $36,817.84
    3. Year to date expenses: $49,749.93 (includes new ambulance bay doors, fire bay skylights, classroom light fixtures, and window screens)
    4. Our expenses are currently about $21,000 below budget and we should still be about $20,000 under budget by year end. We should not have to tap into the Rainy Day Fund.
    5. Total donations still to deposit (included in above income): $3,445
    6. Total other fundraising to deposit (included in above income): $80
    7. Total cash assets: $159,520.57
    8. The 3-year Muma Fund CD will mature in 2022.
    9. We are still short of the goal for the Donation Drive and hope to raise another $8000 -10,000 by end of year.
    10. Contributions from Amazon Smile have totaled $292.82 so far this year.
    11. The 2020 goal for Soups On is $8,000, in addition to sales proceeds for aprons, tee-shirts, etc.
    12. Our insurance company was sold. Everything will remain the same, and we don’t have to complete the 15 pages of paperwork this year.

  1. Member at large: Victor

Victor thanked Jackie and David for helping to complete installation of fire bay skylights.

  1. President: Cary Booth

Classroom screens have been installed and the receipt was given to Jackie after the meeting.

  1. New Business

    1. Jenny Knapp spoke about her plans for Soups On.

      1. To help increase income from this fundraiser, Jenny proposed to increase the cost of lunch and add a charge for raffle tickets. Three (donated) door prizes would be awarded each day, one per hour. (Donations may include things such as services and $10 gift cards.) A decision will be made as to whether individuals must be present to win. Some discussion ensued as to whether available space would accommodate patrons awaiting these awards, but Jenny's counts from 2019 indicate that this should not be a problem if more folks can be induced to eat in the bay. Information on these changes should be forwarded to Pat Espenak at least three weeks prior to publication of our newsletter.
      2. An increase in cost was considered to cover lunch plus a raffle ticket. Victor proposed and David seconded a motion to set the combined cost at $8.00, and the motion passed unanimously.

    1. Schedule January 2020 board meeting

The next board meeting was tentatively scheduled for January 8 at 6 pm.

    1. Document frames for certificates (Jackie)

      1. Jackie proposed that uniform document frames be purchased for various training certificates that have traditionally been mounted on classroom walls. Specifically, she recommended Walmart frames ($2 each, but sturdier than cheaper ones at Dollar Tree). We would need 50-60 if only initial or most recent certifications are framed, and in order to ensure uniformity, another 20 frames should be purchased for future use. Certificates should be in place for the annual meeting.
      2. Dinah's motion to authorize purchase of these frames was seconded by John, and the vote was unanimously supportive.

    1. Organizing attic space - acquisition of shelving and rodent proof totes (for January budget, Jackie)

      1. Available on Amazon Prime are sturdy, 72" chrome wire racks ($106 each). The racks can be broken down into two units - a two-shelf and a three-shelf unit that will fit along the east wall of the catwalk. Shelving and totes would not be ordered until needed capacities are defined.
      2. John advanced, and Victor seconded, a motion to allocate up to $500 for totes and shelving, and the vote was unanimously in favor.

    1. Rodent control options and upkeep (Cary)

      1. Jackie would like to relinquish the job of rodent trapping.
      2. After the meeting, Dinah (assisted by Barb Miller) volunteered for rodent control duty, but only after the building is sealed better than it is now. They emphasized that this is not a lifelong commitment.
      3. Bill will investigate closing the 1.5" space beneath the exterior door nearest the classroom kitchen, and the ambulance bay doors should be fixed in a couple of weeks.
      4. David will use the new thermal imaging camera to discover any remaining breaches of the building.

    1. 2020 budget

The Board made a preliminary stab at setting the 2020 budget, which will be completed at the January meeting.

  1. Old Business

    1. In view of new technologies available for participation in meetings, the Board addressed the need to establish how "presence" should be defined for board members to comprise a quorum, and for voting by active members.
    2. Proposed changes to several sections of the Bylaws recognize the need for adequate two-way communication among board members and establish that active members may vote in absentia (e.g. by phone) in cases where absences have been excused by one of the Chiefs.

  1. Addenda (none)

  1. For the Good of the Order

  1. 10.1.Blood drives (Jackie)

In total, Portal supplied 17 gallons of blood during the five 2019 blood drives. Twenty people have already scheduled for the next (January 16th) drive.

    1. 10.2.Chief’s luncheon (Jackie)

      1. 10.2.1.Jackie will set out equipment this evening.
      2. John and Victor volunteered to help David with the landing zone late afternoon Tuesday.
      3. 10.2.3.The meeting starts at 10:00 AM with lunch at 11:00 AM.

    1. 10.3.Pencil sharpener (Dinah, with input from Bonnie)

      1. 10.3.1.The pencil sharpener in the radio room is useless.
      2. 10.3.2.Bill will bring one from home.

  1. Adjournment

Cary moved for adjournment, John seconded, and the meeting was adjourned at 8:43 pm.


Nomination of Mary Willy to the Portal Rescue Wall of Fame is based on the description of her contributions below (and see 6.1 above).

Portal Rescue was already operating when Mary was approached about donating land for the first building. Our fire truck was then housed in Ted Troller’s barn. All our medical equipment had been moved from Blondeau's pump house to the silver building sitting along the shed at the Portal Store and donated by the Forest Service. Larry Devers helped us get an old blazer that was parked there.

Bill and Mary Willy donated a level and easily accessible tract of land on which to build the fire house. The original 2-vehicle bay, built in 1991, is dedicated to Bill Willy. Joan White and Debbie Bernard taught the first EMT class in the building. That was 1996 – there were no bathrooms, and the building was very cold. The blazer was parked outside along the building and if we girls had to pee badly and we did not want to walk to the store - guess What!!!!!

Then, around 1998, we raised funds for the classroom. We approached Mary again for a little more land so we could put in a septic and heli-pad. Pete Rawdon donated all his time and equipment, and Debbie Bernard sourced out the right size rock for the pad, which is now just a parking lot on the side of the 2nd building. Mary did not hesitate to help. Devorie made Mary a certificate of the first flush of the new bathroom, and it still hangs in the little bathroom in her house. Mary did a lot to help us get where we are today.

For many, many years, Mary’s garage housed the home medical equipment that was available to people to borrow.

Howard Topoff 2011