MESSER POND PROTECTIVE ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING
SEPTEMBER 1, 2005
(Modified on 10/28/05)
The Board of Directors met Thursday, September l, 2005, at the home of newly-elected President Bob Brown at 7 p.m. In addition to Bob Brown, present were Vice President Brian Wicenski, Treasurer Derek Hunt, Secretary Betty Brown, Directors Harrison Roberts, Barbara Troxell, Ex-officio Jane Landenberger and non-voting member Fred Kaufman, Editor of “Messer Ponderings.” Excused absence: Director Robert Crane. Also in attendance was Association member Sandy Brown.
Bob Brown opened the first meeting of the newly-elected board with a warm welcome to all. He discussed the MPPA Directors/Officers list Betty had put together for this meeting and asked people to review it for any necessary changes. As he went over the areas of responsibility for directors, Bob told the board that he had spoken to Bob Crane, asking him to be responsible for Watershed and Land Issues since he has a very good understanding of these areas. Barbara Troxell has agreed to lead Membership Activities and Education. Water Safety and Fish/Wildlife had not been assigned as yet, but at this meeting Harrison Roberts was asked by Bob if he would feel comfortable leading this area. Harrison, an avid fisherman, said he would be happy to take on this responsibility. It was mentioned that the bass in Messer Pond are doing very well. Bob also mentioned we want to do more with the wildlife on the pond.
Due to Gerry Rogoff’s resignation in July, the area of Water Quality and Aquatic Weed Management has not been filled as of this date and we will need to fill this important area. David Webster has told Bob that he is retiring from water sampling, but that John Harris, who has worked with David for some time, was going to take over. John is fully trained and ready to go. Bob did say that he had spoken with John Harris about becoming more involved and advised him that a director’s position was currently open. John said that he was very busy as both a student and teacher at this time. Fred Kaufman also suggested a couple of names. Bob suggested that we do some searching and have more discussion regarding this director’s position.
Minutes – June 10, 2005
Bob Brown asked for discussion of the minutes of our last meeting. Barbara Troxell asked for an explanation of the Lake Host Program mentioned in the minutes. Derek Hunt explained that it is a program run by the New Hampshire Lakes Association to train and educate individuals to serve as lake hosts. Lake hosts are stationed at public boat ramps to monitor the oncoming boat trailers and boats to NH lakes/ponds. The immediate concern is to stop the spread of milfoil from lake to lake by educating boaters about prevention of the introduction and spread of invasive aquatic species such as variable milfoil to our NH lakes and ponds. In 2004 the NHLA secured federal assistance for invasive aquatic species awareness and prevention efforts. They received an appropriation in the amount of $90,000 for the Lake Host program. We would like to take part in this program.
At this point in the meeting, a board member asked if there has been a marked increase in the number of boats coming onto the Pond. Fred Kaufman explained he has been monitoring oncoming boats and handed out his written report on Sign-ins of Boaters at the Messer Pond Boat Ramp. He said there was a total of 101 boats in l4 l/2 weeks (May l8 through August 29, 2005). During this period, the greatest number of boats coming onto the pond in one day was 23. The COA Kayak Group was here with l6 kayaks, accounting for 16 of the 23 boats. Fred estimates that 75% of boaters signed in during the reporting period. A note is left on a boater’s car if they have not signed in. Except for the first three weeks in July, the weather probably curtailed boating and fishing. The busiest times seem to be Saturday and Sunday. In his report, Fred also said he didn’t think this level of usage justified paying a lake host $l0/hr. He suggested we continue with this sign-in record for another year before hiring a lake host. Harrison Roberts said he thinks the number of boats using the pond has doubled since last summer.
Derek Hunt asked if a letter had been written to the Town of New London requesting funds for the prevention of milfoil. The secretary said that Jane Landenberger had requested $2,000 funding in June. Jane has not had a response to date from the town. Prior to this meeting, Betty had called Jessie Levine’s office checking on the status of the request. Jessie said she had not yet seen the request and asked that she be sent a copy.
Call for motion to accept the minutes was made by Bob Brown, seconded by Derek Hunt, and with all in favor, minutes were approved by the Board.
Results of Membership Vote on Revisions to Articles of Agreement and By-laws on 7/23/05: The Association members voted and passed all revisions to the By-laws and Articles of Agreement presented at the MPPA Annual Meeting on July 23, 2005.
Bob Brown asked the secretary for a membership update. Betty reported to date in 2005, we have a total of l07 members representing 51 families, with six new members as follows:
William & Wendy Sloan (Bill & Wendy)
Sonia & Charlotte Berg (children of Amy & Eric Berg)
James & Carolyn Byrne
Derek Hunt suggested that we consider sending out the spring newsletter earlier than we have in the past, or have a separate mailing for the membership application. We will talk about this in January.
The secretary will send out a letter to the few members who have not renewed their membership this year, letting them know they are missed and asking them to consider renewing now.
Regatta: Bob said since Derek is unable to head up the Regatta this year, we sent out a questionnaire to the membership regarding interest in holding the event this summer, but we have not gotten much of a response back. As you know, the questionnaire covered a number of things, expanding it, keeping it the same, interest in changing the date, helping with it, etc. Fred Kaufman had graciously offered to hold it but there is no suitable location available. Everyone was in support of expanding it, but most interestingly, only two people said yes to the question, “Would you participate?”
Derek said in the four years we have held the Regatta, we always had good participation. We prepared and sent out entry forms to be filled out prior to the date, but often wouldn’t get them back until a few days before the event, or in some cases, people simply would show up without entering on the day of the Regatta and we always tried to remain flexible when that happened. Fred Kaufman also mentioned that we tried a parade the first year.
Several suggestions were made for next year’s Regatta. Perhaps a younger family with children might be interested in heading it up, since so many young people participate in the event. A battery-operated megaphone would be very useful for this event. Having a parade of boats is a good idea, but how many boats can be out on the pond at one time? In addition to the parade, people who decide to decorate could do so. We need to find someone who has ample room to have the party following the Regatta. The general consensus is that it would be nice to have a plan relatively early and promote it early. Also mentioned was the possibility of having a fireworks display. Consideration should be given to holding the Regatta on a Sunday other than the Sunday on Labor Day weekend since several families this year have said they won’t be here that weekend. There were many ideas to consider for next year’s Regatta.
Water/weed survey letter: Bob discussed the letter David Webster received from VLAP Biologist Andrea LaMoreaux regarding the annual Volunteer Lake Assessment Program visit to Messer Pond in August. David Webster had assisted her with the sample collection on August 11th. She had made several observations and recommendations to improve the water quality of the pond.
· A pile of wood chips was observed within l0 feet of the Brown Brook crossing at Forest Acres Road on the side of the road closest to the lake. It was recommended the wood chip pile be moved to a flat, level area, approximately 50 feet away from the lakeshore and any tributary streams.
Bob Brown said his main purpose for putting wood chips there was to serve as a catch basin. He is moving the wood chips as recommended.
· #171 Forest Acres Road Brook: It appears that two new culvert crossings have been constructed in this location. On both sides of the road, bank undercutting and erosion has occurred and sediment has built up in the brook. In June and July, the VLAP sampling results showed elevated levels of phosphorus and turbidity at this sampling location. This indicates that phosphorus and sediment is being washed into the brook and, consequently, into pond in this area. This will continue to be a problem and will likely increase in severity, until improvements are made as follows:
DES recommends that the accumulated sediment be cleaned out of the drainage channel on both sides of the road and that additional riprap be installed in the brook on either sides of the culvert. Additional riprap should slow the flow of the runoff, which will reduce the potential for erosion and phosphorus loading intothe pond.
· Overall, the water quality is staying in good shape and the coordinator said MPPA should be commended on its volunteer monitoring efforts. Copies of the 2003 Weed Watchin’ Newsletter published by NHDES were handed out to the board.
· On August 10th, Amy Smagula, DES Exotic Species Coordinator, conducted a plant assessment on Messer Pond. The results showed that the plant populations in Messer Pond are normal. In an email to Bob Brown today, Amy indicated that she had surveyed the entire pond and found a healthy mix of native plants around the shoreline. She found no exotic plants, or no need for any type of plant management. She said everything looks good and healthy. She will be back in touch once she has completed her report.
· Gerry Rogoff, who arranged the pond inspection by Amy Smagula, also sent the board some preliminary information on the pond survey (handed out to the board). Betty will contact Amy regarding a question on a sample being sent to a lab for testing. The completed report should be out in several weeks.
· Members were reminded that at the February 2004 Board meeting, it was agreed that Gerry Rogoff would be responsible for scheduling annual milfoil inspections of Messer Pond, even after his term of office was up. If unable to schedule an inspection through the State in any given year, the MPPA will continue to pay for the inspections and a report will go to the board annually.
· It should be understood by Mr. Rogoff that the scheduling of annual inspections of Messer Pond would be done in concert with the board (in the form of a suggestion or recommendation to the board each year).
· Derek Hunt suggested if there are times when Amy Smagula cannot do this inspection for us through the State due to scheduling, he would support paying her on her own time to do an inspection.
· Once Amy Smagula has completed her final report, the board will review it and send it out to the membership via email.
Bob Brown said there was a fire reported on the island. Some kids had been feeding the fire. Fortunately, the fire department put it out. Derek Hunt suggested that Bob send a letter to Peter Stanley and the fire department from the board to show our appreciation for their quick response.
Newsletter: Fred Kaufman has agreed to do the fall newsletter. If you have any worthy news items, please get them to Fred by October l5th. The mailing date is November 7th.
December Holiday Party: Fred Kaufman reported that Dale and Jeanne Conly have graciously offered to hold the Winter Get-together this year at their home on Knights Hill on either December 3rd or10th. It was suggested that the 10th was the better date. Barbara Troxell asked if it was her responsibility to get out the information to the membership. Fred said an announcement goes out in the newsletter in November. A notice would then be mailed out by Barbara two weeks before the gathering. Help is available. The board members were reminded that we are responsible for bringing cheese or an hors d'oeuvre for the gathering.
Website: Dick Cavallaro would like to come to a board meeting with a small group and present a proposal to the board for a possible MPPA Website. Bob said he will contact Dick and hopefully a presentation can be scheduled as early as the next board meeting.
Financial Status: Derek Hunt went over the detailed financial report. We have two $l,000 CD’s which run six months apart that turn over the end of December and June. We are in good shape financially. YTD, our Ending Cash & CD’s is $5,6l3.64.
· Bob Brown asked which bank has our checking account. Derek responded that it is with the Lake Sunapee Bank .
· Derek has paid our NH Lakes Association dues of $250. He wanted to make sure that if we ask them for a donation for a Lake Host, we are in good standing.
· He suggests that we do a special mailing in March/April for membership dues.
· A $l00 donation to the Bedford Library was made in memory of Midge Peters during the spring.
· Derek suggested as we come to the end of the year, we may want to draw down our checking account and buy another CD.
Bob Brown discussed meeting dates for 2005/2006. It was decided that Friday Board Meetings would work for members. The following dates were discussed: Fri., 10/28/05, (the Nov. meeting will be combined with the 10/28 meeting), Sat., 12/10/05 Holiday Party, Fri., 2/10/06, Fri., 4/7/06, Fri., 5/5/06, Fri., 6/9/06, Sat., 7/22/06, Annual Meeting. Board meetings are usually held at 7 p.m. A list of meeting dates will be sent out to the board members by the secretary.
Bob Brown asked if there was any other discussion?
Barbara Troxell said we are trying to put together a Ladies Luncheon before the snowbirds go south. She will try to get it in the newsletter if it is timely.
Derek Hunt mentioned careful consideration should be given to board replacement to be more inclusive. We need to keep this in mind.
Fred mentioned, at a Zoning Board meeting, the Voellmann’s were asking for approval to put in a boardwalk to the water’s edge.
Minutes of meetings approved by the board will be emailed to the membership. All are welcome to attend meetings, but please advise the board prior to attending.
The meeting adjourned at 9:30 p.m.
Elizabeth A. Brown, Secretary
Messer Pond Protective Association
P.O. Box 103
New London, NH 03257