NOVEMBER 3, 2006  



The Board of Directors met at the home of President Bob Brown on Friday, November 3, 2006.  Members present were Bob Brown, Bob Crane, Jackie Parcells, Nancy Stetson and Betty Brown.  Members absent were Jean-Pierre Paquette, Barbara Troxell and Brian Wicenski. The new Weed Watcher Coordinator Terri Bingham also attended this meeting as well as Association member Sandy Brown.


President Bob Brown opened the meeting with a warm welcome to Terri Bingham who is taking Janie Webster’s place after five years as Chair of the Weed Watcher Program.   Janie is to be commended for a job very well done.  Terri, who was asked by Janie to take over the reigns, plans to talk with other lake associations to see what they are doing in their programs.  At this point, she is looking at the format of the reporting process and plans to network with the area organizations hoping that they will provide her with additional information.  She will then report back to the board.  Bob Crane added at this time that he feels the Weed Watcher Program is the most important thing we do to ensure there are no exotic plants in our lake.  He does not think a Lake Host Program is perhaps needed at this time on the pond.  There was discussion around this thought by board members.  All agree that the work of the Weed Watchers is very valuable.  However, more thought needs to be given the Lake Host Program and this will be an ongoing discussion.  At our last meeting Bob Crane was asked if a report had been received on the pond inspection this summer.   Amy Smagula of NHDES was emailed and has responded that she did not do a second mapping of the pond this year because she had done a very thorough mapping last year and that should still be a very accurate map.  That coupled with the efforts of the Weed Watchers, she feels we should be doing well with keeping an eye on things this year.  Terri Bingham will contact Amy via e-mail regarding next year’s inspection and will copy the Board with her response. 


Bob Brown called for discussion of Board Minutes of September 8, 2006.  There were no questions or comments on the minutes which had been reviewed by all members.  There being no discussion, motion was made by Bob Crane to accept the minutes as published.  The motion was seconded by Jackie Parcells and unanimously approved by the Board.


Bob Brown brought up the subject of Milfoil funds granted by the Town of New London in 2004.  We still have over $400 in our treasury which the town has allowed us to hold on to, but we will need to work on this, remembering reports are required by the Town on all that we do or spend on the prevention of Milfoil.


Website Report:  The site has been updated as late as today.  Nancy advised that the August educational program, “They Sawed up a Storm,” is now on the web with photos from that presentation for members to view.  Presenter Sarah Smith has kindly sent us a CD with additional photos from this program.  Links to the Library of Congress with photos of the sawmill work after the Hurricane of 1938 have been added.  In addition, Nancy has added a MPPA Items for Sale page, new hyperlinks and also updated the About Messer Pond page.  Information and dates of The Winter Gathering in December and upcoming meetings have also been posted.  Website improvements continue.


Ponderings:  The fall issue should be out in a couple of weeks.  It will be emailed to the Board for review prior to publishing.  We still need a few more articles from directors.  Barbara Troxell is hoping to have the Board’s approval of a Winter Carnival Family Day in February.  Betty asked if the board would approve this idea at tonight’s meeting.  Bob Brown inquired if there would be volunteers outside the board to run the event.  That is Barbara’s plan, as usual, to find Association volunteers to run or help with the various activities.  The board approved the idea.  Hopefully, this can be talked about at the Wine and Cheese Gathering on December 9th.


Land Issues:  Nancy had posted a notice of the NL Planning Board Preliminary Hearing on the Harry Snow development of the NE Shore of Messer Pond, held on October 24th.  It was very well represented by MPPA members (approximately a dozen people), as well as abutters and other interested parties.   The planning board meeting on this development has been continued to November 28th and a subcommittee has also been formed, which includes Bob Crane representing MPPA.  The subcommittee will meet on Tuesday, November 7th at 9:30 a.m. at the Fire Department.  The public is welcome to attend this meeting also.  Harry Snow is proposing a 200’ buffer instead of the 50’ waterfront buffer and then the houses will be set back another l00’.  However, there are lots of wetlands throughout the property and the planning board is very concerned about this aspect.  They spent a considerable amount of time discussing the correct buffer requirements and the definition of wetlands and significant wetlands at the preliminary meeting, which is one of the main reasons the subcommittee was formed.  The builder was asked to provide the P.B. with the covenant drawn up by Kellner and Snow.  Peter Blakeman will be the spokesman for Snow Development at the November 28th Planning Board Meeting.  This is a public meeting and MPPA members are urged to attend.  Part of the Kellner sales agreement called for a “declaration of covenants and restrictions” that is intended to permanently protect and preserve a portion of the property bordering Messer Pond.   As a side note, Fred Kaufman suggested to Bob Brown that the Board write the Kellners a thank you letter.


Watershed/Roads:  Next year, with road construction planned for the seven-lot subdivision to be built above the shoreline northeast of the pond, we need to sample sites at the inlets of the two possibly intermittent streams that enter the lake through the wetlands along the shore. 


There is a significant amount of sediment coming down from Interstate 89.  We need to get samples.  We need to put together a plan.  Sometime in the next two weeks, Bob Crane will schedule dates for a walk around the roads within the Messer Pond watershed with JP Paquette and Bob Brown. We need to show cause and effect.  Bob Crane reports there is very little available information on the environmental impact on the pond.  On their walk, some notes will be taken on the culverts.  Whether or not the paving of Forest Acres Road takes place, it would seem that upgrading the roads such as extending major culverts to reduce the amount of road material washing into brooks would take place as part of the regular maintenance of the roads.   We need to show how it affects the quality of life of the pond.  We would then approach Road Agent Richard Lee.


Water Quality:  Bob Crane spent considerable time going over the results of the water samplings for Messer Pond.  He covered this in great detail.  He will contact John Harris on the report he gave tonight.  There is a lot of data over the last ten years which could be put on the website. 


Fish & Wildlife:  We have six duck boxes and should plan to put them out.  Bob Crane advises the boxes need to be 20’ up in the air for wood ducks.  Perhaps we can use the website to ask if anyone would like to help put them out.  George Green of the Conservation Commission maintains the boxes once they are in place.   Bob Brown asked if all the bat houses had been sold.  Derek Hunt had brought the last few to the Annual Meeting and sold them there. 


Boat Launch – Signage:  Fred Kaufman took down the blue DES sign at the boat launch because the area was becoming too cluttered.  We discussed this and decided it should stay in place.  Bob will put it back up and talk with Fred about the sign-in log.  Fred feels that we have so few boaters signing in at the launch that it doesn’t make sense to continue with the boat sign-in sheets.  


Corrine Bennett at Colby-Sawyer College chairs the Community Environmental Studies Program and she is open to coming out to our lake during the spring semester.


Jackie Parcells has contacted John Viar and Don Miller of The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department regarding a species assessment request.  The last one done was in 1977.  Possibly an assessment will be done by Fish and Game this summer.  Jackie will keep in touch with them as a reminder that we are looking forward to such an assessment when they are able to schedule it.  We realize they are understaffed and serve the entire State with very few people.


Jackie also spoke with The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department about the beaver population.  In fact, her article on this will be in the newsletter.   An assessment of the beaver dam and property and shoreline damage may be in order.  The pond is not experiencing damage from beaver dams at this time. However, there is that potential if the population grows.


The Winter Wine and Cheese Gathering will be held on December 9th at the home of Gordon and Terri Bingham on 82 Little Cove Road.  This event is already posted on the website and a separate mailing will go out two to three weeks prior to the event.  Directors are responsible for bringing cheese and crackers to this gathering.


The Lethbridge Lodge has been reserved for our 12th Annual Picnic and Business Meeting on July 28, 2007.  Sharon Williamson of Campus Activities will mail us a contract shortly.  The fee is $200.  Once we receive the contract, a site deposit will be mailed in.


Betty will email board members with the February 9th date of our next meeting to see if it works for everyone.     


Terri Bingham brought up a disturbing matter regarding Messer Pond’s Blueberry Island.  While out kayaking this fall, she and Pat Harris noticed that someone has defamed the rock on the island by painting in large blue and white letters “AB + AZ 4 EVER.”  Bob Brown will talk with the NL Police Chief and Town Office regarding the graffiti on the island to see how we can take care of this.


Since we have decided to have fewer meetings, Betty will try to have draft minutes out to the board within a week.  Members need to review and get back to her with any comments.  Once this has been done, we should be able to approve the minutes so that we may post them on the website earlier than our next meeting date.


Meeting adjourned at 9:35 p.m.


Respectfully submitted, 


Elizabeth A. Brown






Messer Pond Protective Association

P.O. Box 103

New London, NH 03257


  Website Comments or Suggestions