Minutes - 21 June 2011
Webster Conservation Commission
Minutes – June 21, 2011

In Attendance: Chairman Mary Jo MacGowan,  Nancy Van Loan, Sally Embley, Bob Quinn and Susan Roman, Selectman Bruce Johnson joined the meeting in progress

The meeting was called to order at 7:38 p.m.

Susan Roman was appointed Secretary for the meeting.

Minutes:  The minutes for the May meeting were not available for review.  Ms MacGowan will contact Betsy Janeway, the secretary for the May meeting regarding the status of the minutes.

Correspondence:  Correspondence was reviewed, including a Wetlands and Non-Site Specific Permit for 57 Lake Rd, Webster, a Complete Forestry Notification to the Boscawen Water Precinct for Map 6, Lot 6, a notice regarding DES Watershed grants, event notices from Ausbon Sargent and the Merrimack County Conservation District and a thank you from Ausbon Sargent for the Commission’s recent membership contribution. No action was needed.

Review of the Proposed GIS and Mapping Services Agreement with the Audubon Society:  The Commission reviewed the proposed Agreement, which is attached to and incorporated in these minutes.  The Commission noted that the Agreement  was in conformance with previous discussions with Vanessa Jones at the Audubon concerning this project. The Commission reiterated the need for such maps to accomplish its mission of conservation planning. Ms Roman reported on her meeting with Margaret Watkins at Audubon concerning the utility of a sub-watershed map of the form that was commissioned by the Warner Conservation Commission in order to monitor water quality for agriculture and natural resource preservation.  Since such a map would likely require independent data collection, it was decided that the Commission would continue to research this possibility, perhaps meeting with Mr. McLaughlin from Warner, who worked with Ms Watkins on the sub-watershed map. It was noted that the Forest and Farm Resources map would sufficiently meet the Commission’s need for data on soils.  Ms MacGowan will inquire whether Ms Jones needs any GPS coordinates to accomplish the project. The Commission found that the terms of the proposed Agreement were as desired, the production of the maps were important to the Commission’s goals and responsibilities, and the project was less costly than other alternatives investigated by the Commission.  Ms Van Loan moved that the Commission accept and enter into the Agreement, that Ms MacGowan be authorized to sign it on behalf of the Commission, and that Ms MacGowan be authorized to request and transfer to Audubon the funds for the $625.00 downpayment.  Ms Embley seconded the motion. The motion carried by unanimous vote.

Easement Monitoring:  The Commission will await the return of Ms Janeway in order to obtain an update on easement monitoring.

WCC Summer Event : After some discussion, Ms Roman moved to approve the scheduling of a paddle on Trumbull Pond, for Sunday, August 14th at 3:00 p.m.  as the summer public event hosted by the WCC.  Ms Embley seconded the motion, which carried by unanimous vote.

Pending and New Business Items:  Mr Quinn reported that  (1) he continues his research concerning the purchase of a GPS device; (2) that it appeared as though the Call Rd logging projects were being operated responsibly; (3) that he contacted Richard Cook of Warner about the possibility of talking with the Commission about how the Warner Conservation Commission interacts and cooperates with the other town boards in Warner. It was suggested that Mr. Cook might be invited to the Commission’s first fall meeting. Mr. Quinn also informed the Commission about a MA study concerning the appropriate time to harvest fields  (which generally should be no earlier than July) in order to protect nesting birds, such as the Bobolink. He will keep a file on this topic and at some future date the Commission may publish an article to give further details to the public.  Mr. Quinn disseminated his bird notes for the May 28, 2011 WCC bird walk and also introduced a newly published book, The Nature of New Hampshire by Dan Sperduto and Ben Kimball, that comprehensively identifies and describes important natural communities (forests, marshlands etc.) of the Granite State.

Ms Embley informed the Commission about a GPS mapping seminar to be held at the Warner Library on June 22, 2011.

The Commission noted the educational advantages of the Talk and Walk Timber Harvest Tour jointly sponsored by the Boscawen Conservation Commission and SPNHF, among others, in May, 2011.  Ms MacGowan will make inquiries to help the Commission assess whether it could sponsor such an event.

Ms Roman asked that as part of a future agenda consideration be given to hosting an event in the fall to inform the Town  about the new Webster conservation maps  and the conservation planning goals of the Commission.

The Meeting was adjourned at 8:40 p.m.

                                                Respectfully submitted,

                                                Susan C. Roman