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Highland Lake Leadership Team Meeting Minutes - 4/12/2018

posted May 10, 2018, 9:02 AM by Joseph Bickard

4/12/18 Highland Lake Leadership Team Meeting Minutes

 

Location:  Windham Town Hall Conference Room 1, 10:00am

 

Members Present:  Dennis Brown, Kim White, Rosie Hartzler, Chantal Scott, Nathan Poore, Nancy Lightbody, Kimberly Darling, Tony Plante, Donna Chapman, Tom Peterson, Gretchen Anderson, Wendy Garland, Heather True and John MacKinnon by phone.

 

 

1.    The meeting was called to order

2.    The Minutes from prior meeting were approved

3.    Response to Public Forum

 

The overall sense was that the Public Forum was good for those who attended, but the audio and visual quality on line was marginal at best. There was a good turnout for a snowy night.

It was shared that the urgency of the lake condition was not emphasized clearly enough.  For those who already are aware of the problems, the presentations didn’t add anything new, but for most of the audience, this was new and a key step in the ongoing effort to communicate how each person in the watershed impacts the lake.  The Q&A portion of the meeting became the most important and showed clearly the level of understanding that many of the participants have. There was an increased sense of energy during the Q&A, and that may be a key to future communication efforts.  It will take a great deal of effort in many forms to raise the overall understanding of the residents within the watershed.

 

It may be beneficial to hold another forum after the watershed information has been analyzed.  Later in the summer before Labor Day when we still have most of the summer residents would be a good time to have a second forum.

 

The plea for volunteers was very well done and resulted in over 50 new volunteers for various efforts to help Highland Lake.

 

The Towns agreed to put the video from the forum on their media outlets, and the thought of sharing with the media is also a good idea. The current version of the video is much better than it was trying to watch the forum live.

 

 

4.    Discussion on Committee Key Activities and Timeline,  E&O Committee

A listing of roads and road association contacts was put together and several committee members were assigned specific road associations to contact to validate our database. 

 

Maine Lakes Society may collaborate with the group to do buffer projects. Falmouth High School students need to do community services and may help as well. 

 

A Timeline was developed for the next 6 months.

April—road associations

May—technical assistance from DEP

Late May-June—focus on residential topics and road association topics

July-August—Maybe a second round of these meetings

September-October—educational meetings and trainings

 

Topics may include:

1.    How to form a Statutory Road association

2.    Towns vs. private roads

3.    Topics/issues the associations may have. 

 

A new website for the HLLT is being developed by Gretchen and Kimberly outside of the town websites, but they will be linked to the towns, DEP, CCSWCD and HLA websites.

 

 

Chantal has been working with the Maine Lake Society to implement their Lake Smart program on Highland Lake. There is training on the implementation of the program on June 9th.  The 6-hour training session will prepare the participants to do buffer projects and help lakefront homes to become a “Lake Smart Property”. After the training is complete, members can train other people. Another related program that Chantal is leading is to offer some dates and times where volunteers would do 3 hours of buffer projects—community projects where residents would supply the plants and the volunteers would plant them. Once complete, the homeowners could go back to Maine Lake Society with a scorecard to see if their home now qualifies for being “Lake Smart”. If the Home qualifies, they would be awarded a recognition sign to put in their yard.  This is a volunteer program, not a mandated thing. The requirement to qualify for the sign includes five categories.  Completing four categories out of five achieves recognition but a site must meet all five categories to get the sign. This effort is trying to reward the right behaviors, which increases awareness and makes people more conscious about their properties and how individuals play a role in the quality of the lake as a whole.  There may be consideration for recognition for improvement of any kind, not just the full blown Lake Smart program.

 

There is a presentation online which explains the entire program. Committee discussed the option of tailoring this to Highland Lake’s specific needs.

 

The HLA’s newsletter reaches 233 people.

 

Out of 25-30 roads, there appears to be 2 corporations, 3-4 statutory road associations and a few informal ones. Over half of the roads have no form of association at all.  Whatever information is gathered will be used to move forward.  Better to start with those who are organized and interested than to wait until we have all the road information.


Ordinance Committee

 

It was reported that the attorneys for Windham, Preti Flaherty, represented both the proposed Highland Views development and the Town, so a separate attorney has been hired to assist Highland Lake issues and review any proposed ordinance changes.

 

John McKinnon reported that there has been a lot of ground covered so far relative to ordinance recommendations, but no Committee vote has taken place so far on any of the discussed ordinance.

 

Issues that have been discussed include:

 

Manure management plan—regulated at the state not local level, one thought is to reduce the thresholds to as few as 5-10 livestock rather than 50.

 

Private roads—how do we get private road associations and groups to manage their roads? Perhaps using the current taskforce in Windham on private roads to also incorporate environmental concerns in addition to safety into the requirements to have the road plowed by the Town. Include someone from the Ordinance Committee on the Windham Private Road Taskforce.

 

Consider shoreland zoning training for both towns—not just education but to raise awareness that this is a very important issue. Have the Towns identify potential violations through a review and process of notice, assistance, and then with no response to then write a violation, just conceptual right now.

 

Identify all BMPS in the watershed— those with 319 funding as a result with the survey and watershed management plan.  They should require a 5-year recertification. We may want to consider possibly proposing 2 years for the recertification, more stringent at the local level than the state level.

 

Identify direct discharge systems—detect the systems, and fix them

 

Consider phosphorus and fertilizer reductions and their use around lakes, Maine has very weak rules compared to other states.


Watershed Committee

Watershed survey is planned for May 19th.

 

John MacKinnon reported that USM students have assisted with maps. PDFs of maps, drawing the sector lines, old boundaries cut across several properties; goal was to have sector boundaries not bisect properties—going to take a bit of work to fix this. Will have another draft and a database with map and lot numbers to go with the sector maps. Volunteers and technical leaders are all ready. Timeline is on track, has been a very organized process.

 

The survey targets erosion issues, but it is recommended with the survey that target sites be identified for buffer projects. If there is time, going to try and overlap those two tasks.

 

Water testing will include stream testing for this summer, headed by Dr. Karen Wilson. Jeff Dennis (DEP) has taken one sample of a stream adjacent to a large horse manure pile but no results have followed. Jeff will be back in town on April 18th and a follow up meeting is scheduled when he returns. John MaClaine took a sample last week and submitted it to the lab and the results will come.

 

Department of Agriculture, Compliance Officer Matt Randall, is going to work with CCSWCD and perhaps the DEP in an effort to approach large land owners, the horse farm being one of them.

 

How do we manage the erosion sediment law (DEP), if you don’t have access to the private property? Statute allows municipalities to expend public funds on private roads when there is an environmental concern. Possibly the Towns could use special assessments, though extremely difficult and very limited. Windham and Falmouth will look into the legalities into this issue.

 

Windham—48% of the town is private roads. There is a much different situation with more barriers in Windham than Falmouth.

 

MS4 (stormwater) permits (federally regulated through the Clean Water Act) puts more responsibility on municipalities to enforce regulation on private landowners.

 

A new working group/task force in Windham is looking into the issues of private roads. This is assessing roads more for safety than environmental standards. This may be a good place for the Highland Lake Leadership team to get involved.

 

CCSWCD is helping on the 604 B funds proposal being submitted for Highland Lake in two weeks. Heather is going to work on a budget next to go with the proposals.   In addition to the BMP review, matching funds from the towns could include a septic system review by the towns, which could be delayed until the fall.

 

Heather will be sending the draft around again with the proposed budget which will include the proposed match funds from the town.

 

 

5.    Overview of use of Phosphorus Mitigation Fees At CCSWCD

 

This item was tabled

 

 

Other:

There was a brief discussion on the failure of our existing processes to accomplish what we think that they are doing.  Just an example – there is only one engineer to review all subdivision stormwater permits in southern Maine.  That is over 100 per year.  The reviewer cannot take the time to do a site visit, so he just spot checks the different parameters and if it looks good on those, it passes.

Highland Lake Leadership Team Meeting Minutes January 17, 2018

posted Mar 16, 2018, 2:28 PM by Joseph Bickard

Highland Lake Leadership Team Meeting Minutes

 January 17, 2018

 

Present: Nathan Poore, Rosie Hartzler, John MacKinnon, Nancy Lightbody, Tony Plante, Wendy Garland, Robyn Saunders, Heather True,

 Kim White, Chantal Scott, Kimberly Darling, on the phone—Dennis Brown, Gretchen Anderson, Donna Chapman

 

Kim White, Vice Chair ran the meeting since Chair, Dennis Brown was participating by telephone.

The main purpose of the January 17 meeting was to hear back from the subcommittees

Subcommittee updates:

Public forum

The group met with Craig Freshely who will facilitate the March 7th Public Forum at the Windham High School 7-9pm. The overall goal is to inform the public and engage them in helping to address the issues facing Highland Lake.  The focus of the event will be on the science and the problem,  what is needed to correct the problem and not on politics or ordinance changes. Presentations will be made by: Wendy Garland(DEP) providing an overview of the lake history etc., Karen Wilson (USM) giving a science update and next steps, Heather True CCSWCD/Gretchen Anderson Stormwater Windham—what you can do as a homeowner/road association to minimize your impact to the watershed.

The group discussed the size of the audience that they would like to see attend the event, and the goal would be to have an audience of about 300.  There was also discussion on how to engage the public in the discussion through questions etc. and what percentage of the time should be spent in dialog rather than presentations.  The group also discussed ways of recording the event and making it so it could be live streamed.

Testing protocols for 2018 will be presented by Karen Wilson during the science segment of the agenda.

The group discussed briefing both Town Councils with an update on the work the Leadership Team is doing. What is it that we are presenting in an interim update report? Windham’s Council presentation will be on the January 30th, and Falmouth’s will be on February ?12th, both meetings are at 7:00pm.

It was mentioned that the HLA would be proposing some retroactive ordinance changes to the Windham Town Council at the January 23 meeting.

Watershed survey Subcommittee

The Watershed Survey Committee discussed its Task and Volunteer List that the Committee has put together in order to organize and assign each of the steps involved in the Watershed Survey.  The Survey date is scheduled for May 19th , 2018.  A subsequent discussion was held on the difficulty that the Committee members were having in finalizing the contract and scope of work (SOW) with CCSWCD.  CCSWCD had proposed almost $4,500 of costs more than the committee deemed necessary.    CCSWCD had asked that the decision be discussed with the HLLT where Donna Chapman suggested a separate meeting be held for this purpose.   In that separate conference call the Town managers and Chairs of Watershed Committee will look to resolve the contract issues with CCSWCD.  That conference call was scheduled to be held on Friday the 19th at 2pm. The Watershed Committee will schedule its next meeting once the CCSWCD SOW is finalized. 

Education and Outreach Subcommittee

     Mission statement

                        The purpose of the Education and Outreach Subcommittee is to coordinate communications with the general public regarding water quality issues and to build an informed and actively engaged community.

This group is charged with coordinating the public communication with each of the other subcommittees and needs to work closely with the other subcommittees to aid in that effort.

Upcoming events that the E&O Subcommittee will provide support for include:

§  Workshop with Windham Town Council: January 30 and Falmouth Town Council Feb. 12

§  Public Forum on March 7

                        The group discussed how the forum relates to the charge of this subcommittee. It should probably be considered a subcommittee of this subcommittee

§  Watershed Survey May 19

§  Highland Lake Association annual meeting in July

§  Road Association meeting(s)

 

Ordinance Subcommittee

The Ordinance Subcommittee quickly reached consensus on the Charge of the Subcommittee:     to review existing zoning and ordinance in the two towns for effectiveness in protecting the lake, modify as appropriate and research lake protections utilized by other towns for consideration in Falmouth and Windham.

 

Damon Yakovleff of CCSWCD provided a draft table of zoning and surface water ordinance from the two Towns as well as a series of maps with overlays that will help identify different zones and protections within the watershed.  Both efforts will be very helpful as the subcommittee gets into the details of its charge.

An overview of the two Towns’ surface water management point systems was provided and the features were compared and contrasted.

CCSWCD will flesh out the table mentioned above in preparation for the February 28 subcommittee meeting.

As the meeting was wrapping up a motion to move the Science and Water Quality Stakeholders Group from a direct subset of the HLLT to an independent group who shares their findings with the HLLT.  The motion was seconded, discussed and voted to move the group out from under the HLLT.

The next meeting is scheduled for February 28 at 1:00 PM.

Highland Lake Leadership Team Meeting Minutes December 18, 2017

posted Mar 16, 2018, 2:27 PM by Joseph Bickard

Highland Lake Leadership Meeting Minutes

December 18, 2017

 

 

 

Attendance List and Emails:

Kimberly Darling, Falmouth

kdarling@falmouthme.org

Rosie Hartzler, HLA

Rosie@rosieworks.com

Tom Peterson, Windham

tivasamoht@aol.com

Tony Plante, Windham

Atplante@windhammaine.us

Dennis Brown, HLA

DennisBrown@highlandlakemaine.org

Jeff Dennis—Maine DEP

Jeff.dennis@maine.gov

Chantal Scott –HLA

Chantal.altavista@gmail.com

Gretchen Anderson--Windham

gaanderson@windhammaine.us

Nancy Lightbody, Falmouth

nancy@lightbody.org

John Mackinnon, HLA

Watershed3@earthlink.net

Kim White, HLA

Kimwhite590@gmail.com

Heather True, CCSWCD

htrue@cumberlandswcd.org

Robyn Saunders, CCSWCD

rsaunders@cumberlandswcd.org

Nathan Poore, Falmouth

npoore@falmouthme.org

 

Absent:  Donna Chapman                                                                                       Donnachapman@windhammaine.us

 

 

Agenda items:

 

·       Welcome and introduction of new members

·       Review and accept past meeting minutes

Minutes from prior meetings are being considered “notes”. Going forward minutes will be taken and shared with the chair of the Leadership Team for review and sent out to the larger group prior to the next meeting.

·       Elect a Chairperson and Vice Chair

Dennis Brown was nominated and elected Chairperson of the Highland Lake Leadership Team.

Kim White was nominated and elected Vice Chair and Chantal Scott will assist the Vice Chair as needed

·       Subcommittees, members and assigned town staff liaisons:

1. Ordinance Review—Jeff Dennis(DEP), Kim White, Chantal Scott, John Mackinnon, Dennis Brown, Kimberly Darling, Tony Plante

o   CHAIR: John Mackinnon

Assigned town staff liaisons: Falmouth and Windham Planning Departments 

2. Education and Outreach (formally “roads/residents”)—Nancy Lightbody, Rosie Hartzler, Chantal Scott, Nathan Poore, Tony Plante, Dennis Brown, Kimberly Darling, Wendy Garland and Tom Peterson

o   CHAIR: Nancy Lightbody

Assigned town staff liaisons: Gretchen Anderson, Windham and Kimberly Darling, Falmouth

ü  Public Forum Members—Gretchen Anderson, Kimberly Darling, Rosie Hartzler, Chantal Scott, Nancy Lightbody and Wendy Garland

ü  CHAIR:  Rosie Hartzler

o   *The public forum group is a subset of the Education and Outreach Committee.

3.Watershed Survey  (managed by HLA)— Rosie Hartzler, Chantal Scott, Kim White, John MacKinnon, Pete Simonson, Donna Pennoyer, Keith Williams, Heather True (project manager),

CO-CHAIRS: Rosie Hartzler and Kim White

Assigned town staff liaisons: Gretchen Anderson, Windham and Kimberly Darling, Falmouth

ACTION ITEM: Each of the three subcommittees shall hold a meeting in the first half of January to establish a charge, identify scope of work with a timeline to accomplish the scope.  This should be presented to the HLLT at the next scheduled meeting of January 17.  It was suggested that CCSWCD would not be needed at the initial subcommittee meetings since those meetings would be essentially administrative, and the real value that CCSWCD brings would be most appreciated as the committees dig into their respective details.

The Watershed Survey/Action/Management Plan

May 19th will be actual survey date.  HLA will get together with CCSWCD to continue to work out specific roles and responsibilities.

 

Science and Water Quality Members

Keith Williams—HLA, Dr. Karen Wilson—USM, Jeff Dennis—Maine DEP, Gretchen Anderson—Town of Windham, Linda Bacon-Maine DEP, Don Kretchmer, Rosie Hartzler—HLA, Kimberly Darling—Town of Falmouth, Heather True—CCSWCD, Tom Peterson—Windham,  Jeff Dennis also suggested two additional Maine DEP members, Aria Amerbahman and Steve Norton

NOTE:  This committee is an HLA subcommittee and it should be discussed how and if it should be integrated into the HLLT at the meeting on Jan. 17.

 

Additionally:

 

·       Town managers refreshed the group on the freedom of access laws and meeting policy.

 

·       The HLLT finalized and accepted the CCSWCD scope of work.  A cover letter will be drafted by the Towns to confirm the contract scope as approved.

 

·       The HLA is changing it’s website to include a wide range of information on the Lake as well as a central repository of the work of the HLLT.  The intention is to provide links to/from the Town websites as well as that of CCSWCD.

 

 

·       Dates for the next two meetings and locations

January 17 Wednesday— 2:30pm Falmouth Town Hall next HLLT meeting.

February 28 Wednesday—1:00pm Falmouth Town Hall next HLLT meeting                 

Updates:

·       December 1st Science Roundtable Update

Jeff Dennis with Maine DEP provided a brief overview of science roundtable discussion that was held on December 1st

·       Public Forum Subcommittee Update

Gretchen Anderson provided a summation of the work to date as well as the proposed March 7 date for the forum to be held at the Windham High School Auditorium, with a March 20 as a backup snow date.

The call-in number for the Town of Falmouth Conference line is (207) 699-5399. 

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