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Conservation Commission Minutes 04/12/2012
Chichester Conservation Commission
Minutes of Meeting April 12, 2012
Grange Hall – Town Office Meeting Room
Prepared by Frank Harrison


Members Present:  Dawn Marshall, Blaze Konefal, Steve Stock, Frank Harrison, Robert Mann.   
Also attending for entire meeting: Ann Davis (interested town resident)

Members Absent: Zack Boyajian, Gordon Jones, Jeff Jordan

Call to Order by Bob Mann at 7:10 pm

Minutes of last meeting (March 8, 2012) prepared by Dawn Marshall.  Unanimously accepted with appropriate minor amendments.

Mail Review

Charles Moreno, Town Forester, has submitted 3 copies of the Forest Management Plan for the Spaulding Town Forest (122+/- acres).  The three copies were distributed to Steve, Frank, and Blaze/Dawn.  In a timely manner, Steve will share with Bob, Frank will share with Zack, and Blaze/Dawn will share with Gordon.  All members should be familiar with the report specifics prior to the next meeting.

The Chichester Heritage Commission and Historical Society have invited members of the Conservation Commission to attend a special talk on May 17 by Steve Taylor regarding the great sheep boom of New Hampshire.  The talk will be at the Grange Hall.  Blaze has seen this talk and agrees that it is indeed fascinating.

The Historical Society has written a letter of support for the Chichester section of the Suncook River to be nominated for inclusion into the New Hampshire Rivers Management and Protection Program (RMPP).  The Historical Society feels that this action further supports the protection and preservation of “Thunder Bridge”.

Public Information Meetings Regarding the RMPP nomination of the Suncook River.

Chichester Selectmen’s Public Meeting to discuss involvement with the RMPP
Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 7:45 p.m.
Grange Hall Town Office Meeting Room

Suncook River Nominating Committee (see suncookriver.org for more information)
Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.
Epsom Central School Gymnasium
282 Black Hall Road, Epsom, NH

Saving Special Places attendance – No member of those present is planning to attend this event on Saturday, April 14, 2012.  For more information, see extension.unh.edu/saving-special-places/index.htm
Existing Goals and Projects

a)      Conservation Fund investment and issues
Bob Mann confirmed that there is approximately $240,000 present in the Town Conservation Fund, which is administered by the Town Treasurer.  Blaze has advised the treasurer that safe alternative investment options for the fund are available and advisable.  Blaze will follow-up on these potential investment options.

b)      Plan for control of invasive plants on Town-owned lands
The barberry at Carpenter Park is a definite concern, though now is not the best time for management due to the extensive heavy machine work being carried out at the park.  Zack contacted the Bureau of Pesticide Control and reported via email that “we need a licensed Applicator Not for Hire to treat for invasive species.  Gordon may be able to help with supervision as he already has a private applicator license.”  Gordon and Zack were not present at this meeting, so no action will be taken at this time.  When we are ready to do some mechanical removal of the barberry, Bob Mann reports that the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership group has a weed wrench available.

c)      Continued improvement of land and easement stewardship
This is the best time of year to walk our easements for routine boundary checks and general use compliance.  Reports are to be filed annually by the Commission with the State of NH Conservation Land Stewardship Program (see www.nh.gov/oep/programs/CLSP/why.htm)

The following properties have been monitored recently:
Blackman – Bob and Blaze
Drinon – Bob and Blaze
Madeline Sanborn Conservation Area (MSCA)– Bob and Blaze and Zack
Ferman – Bob and Blaze and Frank

The following property needs to be visited:
Camping World – Bob will coordinate a visit with available members through email contact.
Whittemore – Monitoring desirable as this is a non-conservation town-owned parcel
5 Hill Estates Open Space – This easement needs to be researched

Land for Sale near the Whittemore site.  Lot 128 and 129 on Town Map 9
Steve Stock reported the unfortunate passing of Elnora Warren.  Apparently, her heirs may be interested in selling or developing the significant property adjacent to the Suncook River, including field and forest and a stunning view of the Suncook River from Webster Mills Road just before crossing the bridge into Pittsfield.  This could be the opportunity for a Conservation Easement.  Steve will put his ear to the ground and report any new information discovered in May.

d)      Public outreach, including walks and workshops
No action taken at this time.

e)      Carpenter Park planning
The clear cutting process is moving along well thanks to an efficient company and dry weather. The intent is to finish the north section adjacent to ball fields before the start of the CYA season.  The wood quality is reportedly quite poor, as suspected, but there are hopes that the south section across Bear Hill Road will yield better wood during the thinning process.  The recreational trail is stripped and clear, but is under scrutiny for exact location compared to the original survey map.  All aspects of the new developments are being directly managed by the Parks and Recreation Commission.

f)      Public information to promote conservation easements
No action taken at this time.  Conservation members will alert the other members as opportunities become available.

g)      Plan for access and expanded use of Spaulding Town Forest
Bob will contact Charles Moreno for wording for an easement to allow proper follow through with management of the Spaulding lot.  This easement will be reviewed by the town attorney, then delivered to the property owners to obtain temporary or permanent access.

Our team shows interest in physically blazing the boundaries of the Spaulding lot, possibly eliminating or reducing the projected expense for professional blazing.  Just sending Blaze Konefal for a casual walk around the boundary does not constitute proper “blazing”.  Steve will look into the purchase of proper blazing equipment and supplies.

Other Business

a)      Suncook River Nomination
Steve Stock motioned for this commission to accept the nomination of the Chichester section of the Suncook River into the RMPP.  Dawn Marshall seconded the motion.  The motion failed with Steve and Dawn voting YES for the motion and Blaze, Bob, and Frank voting NO for the motion.
There was general consent that more information needs to be gathered at the public meetings to be held April 17 and April 18. (see front page of these minutes)

b)      Budget issues
No conservation budget issues were brought to the table.

NEXT MEETING
Thursday, May 10, 2012
7 pm
Approved.


Robert Mann, Chairman


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