Room One takes on fiscal sponsorship

By Marcy Stamper

Room One will offer temporary fiscal sponsorship of a new long-term recovery organization (LTRO) to address needs connected with the wildfire. The Twisp-based social-service agency announced Wednesday (Aug. 6) that it would be the fiscal sponsor for a three-month period, with a three-month extension upon mutual agreement of the organizations involved.

Hank Cramer, a disaster reservist with the state’s Emergency Management Division, has agreed to become the director/coordinator of the LTRO. Cramer has been working over the past several weeks to assess private-property damage as part of the county’s application for a major disaster declaration from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Cramer’s first task will be to contact and channel recovery efforts into and across the Methow Valley to consolidate and direct needs and resources.

Some 50 representatives from social-service agencies, local government, environmental organizations, health-care providers, the faith community and many independent volunteers combined their efforts over the past two weeks to coordinate their response to the wildfire and begin working on long-term recovery.

The LTRO will be a central place for assessing needs, applying for grants and distributing funds, and overseeing caseworkers who will assist individuals affected by the fire.

The LTRO will establish itself as a nonprofit (under the 501(c)(3) section of the tax code) so that it has full autonomy and can represent the diversity of the Methow Valley and the valley’s recovery needs, according to Room One.