Minutes for the regular meeting of the
Walpole Conservation Commission
Monday, August 7, 2017
Present: Alicia Flammia, John Peska, Gary Speed, Myra Mansouri (alt.), Peter Palmiotto (alt.), Jackie Kensen, Kelli Wilson, Lewis Shelley, Cheryl Mayberry (SelectBoard representative), Elaine Heleen, acting secretary
Not Present: Duncan Watson
Ms. Flammia, chair, called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM.
Seating of Alternates
Ms. Mansouri was seated to achieve quorum.
No Treasury or Budget reports were available.
Mr. Peska moved to accept the minutes for the July 10, 2017 meeting as presented. Ms. Wilson seconded, and the motion passed with all in favor.
- Much discussion ensued regarding trail work needed at Mill Pond and Fanny Mason and getting other volunteers to assist. Members will contact other groups such as school kids who need volunteer hours, snowmobilers, bike club, walking group, scout troops, Hooper students, Ag Dept of High School, etc. Late fall is best for heavy work as there are less ticks.
- Aquatic Resource Mitigation Fund Program (ARM) re: funding for dam removal/replacement through DES. Mr. Peska will contact Warren Stevens, engineer to get an estimate on time needed to assess the Reservoir Dam and cost to hire him.
- Prioritize Town Forests for the Town Forester to assess. The Commission members recommend Fanny Mason, Hooper Forest, Reservoir Forest, Nelson, March, Burton, Watershed, Trombley, Great Brook, and Sawyer Easement.
- Palmiotto says that nothing has been done about the Antioch University intern project as school is just getting started again.
- Monadnock Conservancy/ Nerrie Easement request for $9,000. The sticking point is still the Easement Stewardship Fund. Commission members remember that in the past only the cost of Surveys and Legal fees were covered; it was not the intent to cover the Easement Stewardship costs. Shelley moved to state that going forward the Conservation Commission will only cover Survey and Legal Fees related to Easements. No one seconded as attempts to correct the language flooded in. Mr. Peska moved to table Mr. Shelley’s motion until the Town Attorney could review the motion and recommend the best language to correctly state the intent of the situation. Ms. Mansouri seconded Mr. Peska’s motion which passed with all in favor.
- Mayberry will confirm that the Selectboard appointed Laura Hayes to the Conservation Commission.
- Fanny Mason trails have gotten overgrown. A feasibility study needs to be done to establish what work is needed and what it would take to have the trails cleared and completed. Shelley has done feasibility studies for other groups at around $50/hr and he estimates that the FM would take 3 days including write up. Ms. Flammia will check with the Town Attorney on how to best avoid any conflicts of interest if Mr. Shelley is to be hired to do the study.
- Peska has looked into the best place for the Commission’s monies. Mrs. Pschirrer, Selectboard member, has recommended a state fund that would earn better interest for the Conservation fund. Mr. Peska made a motion to move the Conservation Fund to the State fund. Ms. Mansouri seconded, and the motion passed with all in favor.
- Additional property will be added to the High Blue Easement of 40 acres to the North of the current 260 acres with a neighbor contributing over half of the funding.
The next meeting will be Monday, September 11, 2017.
Mr. Peska moved that the meeting be adjourned at 8:45pm. Ms. Mansouri seconded, and the motion passed with all in favor.
Elaine Heleen, Acting Recording Secretary
NOTE: These are unapproved minutes with corrections to be found in the minutes of the next meeting.