The Oakmont Village Association (OVA) Board of Directors approved the OVA Vegetation Management Plan (VMP), prepared by the General Manager, on April 21, 2020. The following Fire Safety and Control Policy Rules, Regulations and Best Practices are utilized in conjunction with the VMP, the duty to maintain enforcement policy, and the Association’s protective restrictions (CC&Rs.)
It shall be each property owner‘s responsibility to maintain their property in such a manner that it will not constitute a fire hazard to the residents, other properties, or surrounding forest of the OVA.
Rules, Regulations, and Best Practices for Residential Properties:
- All combustible materials shall be removed from beneath decks, stairways, and roof overhangs.
- All leaves and pine needles shall be regularly removed from a structure’s roof and rain gutters.
- The street address of each residential property shall be posted street side and visible night and day to emergency personnel.
- All combustible branch piles, dry slash, scrap lumber, and woody materials shall be removed from residential properties.
- All dry, flammable vegetation within 100 feet (if appropriate, based on yard size) of any structure and within 30 feet of any driveway and roadway shall be removed.
- Non-irrigated sections of grass shall be cut to 4-inch stubble through the fire season to a distance of 100 feet of any structure. (An example would be a large lot with a non-irrigated open field adjacent to Annadel Park).
- Trees that are considered a potential fire hazard (as specified in the VMP) should be limbed to a minimum of 6 feet from the ground, not to exceed 1/3 of the tree height, and will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. All hanging limbs on such trees will be cut to a minimum of 6 feet off the ground.
- To help in the reduction of ladder fuels, the area under each tree shall be maintained free of weeds and tall, dry grasses.
- Following the VMP and Sonoma County’s Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), standing dead trees and dead bushes shall be removed from each property.
- Limbs on a homeowner or association property within 10 feet above any chimney shall be removed. Chimney spark arresters are recommended.
- All loose wood material (e.g., firewood, lumber, and wood pieces) shall be removed from within 30 feet of any structure. Where this is not attainable, a fireproof tarp may be approved.
- Properties within highly wooded areas or within 100 feet of High Fire Severity Zones such as Annadel State Park shall not have an excessively dense tree and brush cover (as defined in the CWPP).
- A 5-foot defensible space shall be maintained around the perimeter of all homes and related structures.
Common Area Fire Hazard Inspections
OVA-authorized fire inspectors will annually conduct fire inspections on OVA Common Area Parcels (which are identified in the VMP). OVA will execute remediation projects as necessary and appropriate.
Homeowner Fire Hazard Inspections
Authorized inspectors will annually conduct fire inspections. Inspectors will use OVA’s most current Homeowners Fire Safety Inspection Forms on all properties within OVA, which will help homeowners and sub-association leaders identify hazardous fire conditions and will make recommendations or require remediation as necessary and appropriate.
If upon inspection of a property by an OVA-authorized inspector, a fire hazard is observed, notice for correction will be served. The inspector will specify an appropriate time period to address the extreme fire hazard.
Each case will be handled individually. Inspectors will consider all appropriate findings (including, but not limited to, urgency, project size, and project cost) in setting remediation guidelines.
If the fire hazard is not remediated within the prescribed time, a hearing may be conducted. Such hearings will be conducted according to the OVA Enforcement Policy. A fine may be assessed against the property owner. Should there be continued non-compliance, the matter may be referred to the Board of Directors for additional action. Compliance may be obtained by the Association based on the Duty to Maintain Enforcement Policy, which was approved on July 17, 2018.
If the OVA or its designee must enter a non-compliant property to correct one or more violations, the cost of such action may become a special individual assessment levied on the property owner. Such assessment may be collected in a manner consistent with the OVA’s Collection Policy.
In the event of demonstrated hardship, the initial remediation period may be extended by the inspector or management for an additional period, to be determined on a case-by-case basis. Fire safety and the protection of life and property are the primary considerations in such judgments. Economic hardship alone will not justify such an extension.
If a member or Association opposes the requests made by the authorized inspector, they may appeal the inspector’s decision to the Board of Directors. The appeal procedure is available from the Administrative Office and online on the Oakmont’s website. The appeal will be heard in a closed meeting by the Oakmont Board of Directors at its next regularly scheduled Executive Session Board meeting. The appeal/reconsideration decision by the Oakmont Board of Directors shall be final.
Right to Change
The Board of Directors may, from time to time, amend this document as it deems necessary.