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Conservation Commission Minutes 06/12/2006
Chichester Conservation Commission
06/12/06~Meeting Minutes
7:00, Chichester Grange Hall

Present:  Gordon Jones, Bob Mann, Mike Marchand, Walter Sanborn, Zack Boyajian, Dawn Marshall and Lee-Ann Valotto

1.  General Items
Minutes from last month were unanimously approved.

2.  7:05pm Public Hearing to hear comment regarding the withdrawal of money from the Conservation fund in order to fund Phase II of the Wetland’s Inventory.

Bob presented an overview of Phase II that would cover the Northern half of Chichester, the area not covered in Phase I.  Wetlands 2 acres and greater in size would be considered for evaluation.  The inventory would not just delineate the wetlands but prioritizes the importance of the particular wetland.

Concerns were raised by the property owners who were present
        -What is the purpose of the study?
-The previous method of contacting landowners to gain access to their land was felt to be inadequate and placed the burden on the landowner.
        -The study is seen as further meddling with the rights of property owners.
-Money from the Conservation fund is being wasted and it should be spent on property acquisition.
        -Does this study duplicate the information already available in the NRI?
-If and when a property is developed, the wetlands will need to be delineated at the developer’s expense not the town’s expense.
        -How will this study effect property values?
        -Would this study provide the information to seek Prime Wetlands status?
        -Against throwing money at a problem that doesn’t exit
        - Federal and State regulations are enough.
        -The study is the first step in more regulations for landowners.

Of the 7 members of the public in attendance, 5 voiced strong opposition to using Conservation funds to undertake Phase II of the study.   
Brandon Guida, stated that he was representing several landowners including, Julie Patterson, Frank Merrill, Francis Felcon, Gary and Susan Schreier, Ed and Barbara Ferman and Jeff Harlow with over 1400 acres of land amongst them.  This group opposes the proposed study and do not want the CCC or its representatives on their property.  
Carl Merrill, Richard Millette, and Bob Gagne were also opposed to the study and stated they would not allow anyone on their property to view the wetlands.  
Steve MacCleery and his father Russell do not want the CCC or its representatives on their 235 acres.  Frank Harrison said that he would like more information in writing and that the Commission should provide more education on the matter.  He supports the wetlands study only.

Brandon Guida stated that if the study is to proceed, that the commission seek signed permission from the landowner and have it notarized to ensure it is the actual landowner.
Steve MacCleary requested that the members of the CCC that were present at the Public Hearing vote on whether the study proceeds to Phase II.
Public hearing ended at 9:19 pm.
A motion was made by Walter, seconded by Mike
        Voting on Phase II of Wetlands Inventory tabled
        Aye 7

3.  Goals status review
        Long Term
        a.  Complete wetlands inventory  - Public Hearing
b.      Increase involvement with the Planning board – Jeff, Bob and Walter met with the Selectmen.  The Planning board has agreed to provide the CCC with copies of projects that involve wetlands impact and open space conservation projects.
c.      Sanborn –Cray – see item 4 below.
d.      Carpenter Park Survey – The selectmen were informed of the CCC vote to approve spending $7500 to contribute to the survey.

Short Term
a.      Access to Sanborn – the bounds have been set.  Zack did some light clearing.  We will meet at the beginning of July 10 meeting to discuss the wetlands crossing.
b.      Establish a stewardship account – no report
c.      Adopt Criteria for accepting a conservation easement – no progress
d.      Habitat/ vernal pool inventory – inventory 2/3 complete.  The rest will be done next year.
e.      Website – nothing to report
f.      Land protection contacts – nothing to report            

4.  Dredge and Fill Application for Marsh Pond Dam
The town has completed the Dredge and Fill application to remove the Town’s half of the dam.  The Selectmen will move ahead when the permits are received.
The administrative order to remove the dam is addressed to both Mr. Cavacco and the Town and only the Town is responding.  The CCC will send a letter to DES
-       Are both parties responding so that the resource isn’t impacted twice?
-       Copy the letter regarding accessing the dam over the Conservation easement.

Meeting was adjourned at 10:22 pm

Upcoming Meetings/Events

07/10   7:00 PM at Town Hall – Regular CCC meeting

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