El Dorado County Fire Safe Council

The mission of EI Dorado County Fire Safe Council is to protect the people of EI Dorado County and their property from the effects of catastrophic wildfire through education, cooperation, innovation and action.

EDCFSC Policies and Bylaws – Appendix A



  1. A-1 Records Retention
  2. A-2 Drug-Free Workplace


As a tax-exempt, non-profit organization, record keeping and record retention are very important. There are two specific considerations for a non-profit organization to have an established records retention policy.

  1. In order to retain Federal Tax exemption, a non-profit organization must be able to establish that it is organized and operated as to the specified purpose that gave rise to the Internal Revenue grant of a tax exemption. The El Dorado County Fire Safe Council’s non-profit classification is as a nonprofit public benefit corporation (IRC section 501(c) (3).
  2. Under the federal Sarbanes-Oxley Act (2002), the destruction of documents in the face of a governmental inquiry is a criminal offense and applies to both profit and non-profit organizations. Although there have been various state and federal requirements regarding the maintenance of records before Sarbanes-Oxley, it is now of utmost importance to maintain a policy of records retention and be aware of this law in the decision-making process for destruction of documents.

A record is any material that contains information about the organization’s plans, results, policies or performance. Anything about the organization that can be represented with words or numbers can be considered a business record which must be retained and managed for several years or even permanently depending on the nature of the information. The terms “records” and “records retention” include hard paper copy, email, computer disks, microfilm, scanned or digitized copies, magnetic and visual media and such other electronic communications.

This records management policy is designed to conform to the Federal and State charitable laws. Note that California law gives the Attorney General an unusually long statute of limitations (10 years) within which to bring an action for breach of charitable trust.

Accounts Receivable Invoices 10
Balance Sheets P
Bank Reconciliations 10 Financial Binder
Bank Statements 10 Financial Binder
Bank Deposit Slips 3 Financial Binder
Budgets 3
Chart of Accounts P Accountant
Check Register P Accountant
Checks (canceled) 10 Financial Binder
Duplicate Deposit Slips 10 Financial Binder
Expense Reports 10
Financial Statements (end-of-year) 10 Accountant
General ledgers and end of year Statements P Accountant
Invoices to Customers 10 Financial Binder
Vendor Invoices 10 Financial Binder
Volunteer Records 3
Amendments P
Annual Reports P
Articles of Incorporation P Directors Manual
Audit Reports – Public P
Audit Reports – Internal 6
Bylaws p Directors Manual
Contracts and Leases (expired) 10
Contracts and Leases still in effect P
Contributions (Note: Contribution records include a written agreement between the donor and the charity with regard to any contribution, an email communication or notes of or recordings of an oral discussion between the charity and the donor where the representative of the charity made representations to the donor with regard to the contribution on which the donor may have relied in making the gift) 10 Financial Binder
Correspondence, general 4
Correspondence (legal and important) P
Financial Statements P Financial Binder
Internal Reports (miscellaneous) 3
Minute Book – Board of Directors P Secretary
Recordings of Board Meetings P Electronic
Organizational Charts P
Depreciation schedules 10
Inventories of products, materials, supplies 10
Employee personnel records (post termination) 7
Employment applications 3
Insurance policies (expired) P
Insurance records, current accident reports, claims, policies, etc. P
Claims & Litigation re Torts & Breach of Contract P
Contracts – Employees P
Contracts – Government P
Contracts – Special P
Correspondence – Legal P
Leases/Canceled 10
Title/Licenses P
Contractors 3 yrs. From completion of contract
Payroll records and summaries 10
Time sheets and cards 10
Tax returns and worksheets, revenue agents’ reports, and other docs re determination of tax liability P
Canceled Checks – Tax P
Correspondence – Tax P
Income Tax Returns P
Inventory Reports P
Vehicle Operation and Maintenance 2
Telecommunication Copies 1

*In years or P = Permanent

**Current records or records in use can be retained by the Secretary, the Treasurer or the Executive Coordinator. These include the Secretary’s Binder, the Financial Binder and the Executive Coordinator’s files. When no longer needed on a monthly or more frequent basis, all records will be placed in secure storage.

As much as possible, all records will be kept in electronic formats (.pdf, .xls or .wpd files). Hard copies may be kept for convenience but once created are subject to the same retention schedules. Electronic records will be backed up on a monthly basis and stored in secure storage between backups.

One member of the Executive Board will be designated as holder of the electronic records. This person will be responsible for the monthly backups.


1. Commitment to Drug-Free Workplace

The El Dorado County Fire Safe Council (EDCFSC) is committed to maintaining a drug-free workplace pursuant to the mandate and requirements of the Federal Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 (P. L. 100-690) and Title 41, Chapter 10, Section 702 of U.S. Code. As part of this commitment, the EDCFSC has adopted the following Drug-Free Workplace Statement. This statement is intended to work in concert with prohibitions on controlled substances for Board members, officers, contractors and contract employees both within and outside the workplace and are intended to help maintain a healthy, safe and exemplary environment for the conduct of EDCFSC business.

2. Drug-Free Workplace Statement

“All Board members, officers, contractors and contract employees of the El Dorado County Fire Safe Council are prohibited from engaging in any activity relating to the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of controlled substances during conduct of business for the El Dorado County Fire Safe Council. Such activity is also prohibited while working, anywhere on an El Dorado County Fire Safe Council project site.”

For purposes of this statement, “controlled substance” refers to any drug, intoxicating compound or other substances which are illegal to possess, use, sell or otherwise promote. Examples of illicit substances include, but are not limited to:

  1. Dangerous, detrimental, or harmful drugs and intoxicating compounds such as cocaine, heroin, marijuana, hashish, amphetamines, methamphetamines, barbiturates, hallucinogens, and other controlled substances which have a dangerously stimulative or depressive effect on the central nervous system.
  2. Anabolic steroids.
  3. Drug paraphernalia.

3. Condition of Membership or Contract

As a condition of membership or contract, all members, contractors and contract employees must abide by the terms of the drug-free workplace statement, and must notify the EDCFSC of any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace or while on working time no later than ten days after such conviction. A Board member, contractor or contract employee’s failure to comply with this provision, whenever discovered by the EDCFSC, may result in immediate removal from the Board or cancellation of a contract.

4. Discipline and Discharge

Disciplinary action shall be imposed on any Officer, Board member, contractor or contract employee who engages in any of the above-prohibited activities. Disciplinary action may include removal from office or Board position or suspension of contract pending an investigation and final decision on the appropriate disciplinary response. Because violation of the Drug-Free Workplace Statement may also constitute a violation of law, persons believed to be offenders will be referred for prosecution. Depending upon the circumstances of the violation, the EDCFSC may terminate the contract of a contractor or contract employee for the first offense.

Some Things to Consider Before Hiring a Contractor
Plan your project carefully.
Shop around before hiring a contractor.
Get at least three written bids on your project.

When requesting bids, provide all contractors with accurate plans or drawings that will enable them to determine the scope and cost of work.

Check with the:

to make sure the contractor is properly licensed, and to check the status and disciplinary history of the license or certification.

SCL – State Licensed Contractor
LTO – Licensed Timber Operator
PCA – Licensed Pest Control Advisor
RPF – Registered Professional Forester
QAL – Qualified Applicators License

Check out contractors with your local building department, trade associations or unions, consumer protection agency, and the Better Business Bureau.
Get references for previous projects the contractor has done, and follow up on them. Look at work and ask if the homeowners were satisfied with the results.
Pay only 10 percent of the project price or $1,000 as a down payment, whichever is less, and make sure your contract provides for a “retention.”
Make sure everything you and your contractor have agreed to is included in your contract, and don’t sign anything until you understand and agree with all terms.
Ask your contractor about inconveniences that may occur, and plan accordingly.
Keep a job file.
Take precautions to prevent mechanic’s liens from being filed against your property and ask for lien releases from subcontractors and materials suppliers.
Make frequent inspections of the work, including a final walk-through.
If problems or disagreements occur, try first to negotiate with the contractor.
Contractor’s License: In general, all persons or businesses constructing or altering, moving, wrecking, or demolishing any building, highway, road, parking facility, railroad, excavation or other structure, project, development or improvement must be licensed as a contractor if the total cost of labor and materials for a project is $500 or more. A license is also needed to do any work as a subcontractor or specialty contractor, and persons engaged in the business of home improvement