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April 12, 2004
Chichester Conservation Commission
04/12/04         Meeting Minutes
7:00, Chichester Grange Hall

Present:  Gwen Adams, Jeff Andrews, Bob Mann, Walter Sanborn, Deb Soule, and Lee-Ann Valotto   

General Items
Lee-Ann Valotto joined the commission as David Kenneally’s replacement. Skip Lawrence will replace Stan Brehm as the Planning Board’s representative on the commission.

Minutes from last month were unanimously approved.

Noteworthy mail consisted of a wetland permit for James Dionne and a letter dated 03/13/04 from Paul Adams regarding proposing legislation to increase from 10% to 20% the land use change tax.  The group agreed to invite Mr. Adams to our next meeting to discuss his proposal.  Other mail included a seminar announcement for the volunteer lakes assessment program (VLAP) and a Board of Adjustment meeting announcement for Route 4 properties potentially impacted by the wetland setback rule.

Joe Austin – Route 4 Property, Proposed 55 and Over Development
Mr. Austin was referred to the commission by the Planning Board regarding his proposed development on his Route 4 property. The road for this development would cross wetlands in 2 places. This is a minimal impact project and care was taken to cross the wetlands at the smallest areas. He has looked at other alternatives to accessing the property and has run across wetland setback or improper zoning issues. He said he needed a letter from the commission in order to continue with his project. Bob motioned to send a letter to the Planning Board stating we recognize the necessity: to access the property by crossing wetlands, for the well within the wetland setback by the model home next to Route 4, and the need for controlled drainage within the 100’ wetland setback. In addition, we will cite safety considerations (accessing Route 4 which is a busy and fast road) as a major concern and ask the town boards to consider this foremost.  All were in favor.

Discussion on Goal 5: Designating Prime Wetlands
Bob mentioned we might be able to better define what “adjacent to” means in terms of properties affected by prime wetlands designation. The group agreed to send out RFPs for delineating wetland areas for the Marsh and Lynxfield Ponds. The RFP would be for the delineation alone and with a designation plan. Jeff agreed to write the RFP.

Source Water Protection – Next steps?

Deb provided materials on groundwater reclassification and what the town would have to do to maintain them. Given time and resource constraints, the group decided to focus resources on prime wetland designation this year and start with education this year for source water protection. Deb and Lee-Ann will develop educational info for Chichester’s section of the Concord Monitor town crier column, the town web site, and the Suncook Valley Sun paper.

Land Protection Subcommittee
Jeff displayed NRI and land conservation info at the town voting and meeting events. The group is currently working on a land conservation brochure.

Sanborn Cray Conservation Area access project
Bob, Jeff, Deb, and Walter surveyed potential access ways to this area on April 10th.  The best access with the easiest parking solution appears to be from the town hall across a section of Mr. Plummer’s land to a high point on the conservation area. Bob and Jeff talked to Mr. Plummer about his interest in allowing access across his property. They will send a follow-up letter to him. Jeff will send in a curb cut application for the conservation area access on Main Street near the Shaw property to see if there is enough sight distance to make this a safe access route.  

Spaulding Town Forest Trail Easement
Jeff mentioned that while skiing this trail easement (provided to the Trail Dawgs snowmobile Club last fall), he noticed ATV tracks leading off the trail in the town forest at two locations. The trail was supposed to be posted and monitored against ATV use and was to be gated as well. Jeff did not remember ATV signs or a gate. Deb will contact Mr. Gagne of the Trail Dawgs to set up a site walk to see if the provisions of the trail easement have been carried out.

Goals for CCC
The remaining unfinished goals were reviewed to see what progress has been made. Note: Goal #3 –“Seeking funds for purchasing (or gaining donations of) conservation land and/or easements” is reviewed every month as a regular agenda item and has been removed from the list below.

1) Baseline water quality monitoring of Marsh Pond.
Training to be provided Saturday, May 22nd. Bob and Lee-Ann to register for training. Deb will set up the biologist visit to the pond.

2) Coordinating with the Planning Board on environmentally related rules.
Bob and Lee-Ann will discuss the wetland setback rule and its implications with the Planning Board.

5) Beginning the process of designating prime wetlands.
        RFPs to be sent out for Marsh and Lynxfield Pond delineations and designation reports.

7) Implementing the Sanborn Cray Conservation Area management plan.
        This will proceed once the best access point is determined.     

Bob mentioned the roadside cleanup project slated for April 24th and 25th.

Commission elections will be held at the next meeting.

Jeff will set up site walks on the conservation easements starting next week. Site walks will be on weekday nights and notification will be sent via email. Deb suggested that we buy a compass with a sighting mirror to navigate some of the easement lines. The group agreed.

Jeff motioned for commission to become a sustaining member of the Friends of the Suncook River group. The group approved of the motion. Bob will submit the paperwork.

Lee-Ann mentioned she will volunteer to work on the Frangione Outdoor Classroom project with the school district.

Meeting was adjourned at 9:40.

Upcoming Meetings
05/03 @ 7:00 PM in Selectmen’s conference room– Land Protection Subcommittee

05/10 @ 7:00 PM in Selectmen’s conference room – Regular CCC meeting

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