Minutes for Public Monthly Meeting
February 12, 2009
Dining Room, Franklin Homestead
Present: Jim Cameron, Dick Benton, David Breed, Paul Stanley, Jim Dewing, Dan Larivee, Pauline Favereau, John Cote, Tom Clark of RCAP Solutions, and Heidi Britch-Valenta.
Cameron called the meeting to order at 7:05 P.M.
Community Septic - Cameron began with a recap on the septic planning session from January 10th. He introduced special guest, Tom Clark, from Rural Community Assistance Program Solutions. Clark was present to offer assistance to the Board in the efforts to research avenues for improving septic systems around the lake. Clark explained that his not-for-profit organization has been assisting rural communities with similar situations for 30 years. RCAP is grant funded so his services come at no charge to the group.
Clark stated that for small towns centralized wastewater is out of the question due to the exorbitant cost. ($130 per foot was current estimate for laying pipe).
Clark explained different options for decentralized wastewater systems and urged patience from the group when embarking on this process. First the land owners must be convinced there is a problem worth addressing. The need for education and outreach is crucial. Clark said that the process has taken as long as 10 years to fruition in other towns. He suggested beginning by doing some water testing to see if there is evidence of contaminates. It was suggested that the State Park records be considered regarding bacteria count. He also suggested canvassing the area with septic surveys which would serve as an excellent educational tool. He offered man power to accomplish this task and to provide us with sample surveys to help us develop one that best fits our purpose.
This suggestion was in line with the frame work of the grant so the board accepted the offer. Clark agreed to research any past testing performed in the lake that may be on record at the state water quality office and report back to the group.
Education outreach- Sue and Heidi have not met but will report in March
Fact Sheet- David, Dick and Heidi have met and made a plan to create a two sided sheet with the most pertinent information to hand out. They will also create several copies of a binder that will be located at various locations around the lake and in the Town Clerk’s office so when someone is interested they can find accurate information about regulations, septic upgrade options, phosphorus free products, etc.
Soil Testing – Jim reported on a plan to request free soil testing from various engineering firms to see if any of the preliminary work could be done at no charge. John Cote offered to request a free consultation from Bill Zablotsky, of the state.
Stream Assesment- Brendan O’Shea did not appear as scheduled to present information on his proposal for stream bank analysis. The Board suggested this process should go out to bid to comply with state regulations regarding grant funding. Britch-Valenta will contact MRBA to get more information.
Agricultural Session- Cameron then turned the topic to feedback on the Agricultural session on February 7th. The group felt the meeting was positive and briefly touched on the session and agreed to go into the topic in more detail at the March meeting. The Board suggested that a large attendance of farmers would be ideal for this discussion.
Britch-Valenta reported that the suggestion from the meeting to collaborate with Wayne Fisk to purchase an aerator machine would require a grant amendment to use current 319 funds and would also require further funding. Jim Dewing noted that the size of the machine would make it difficult for use at some of the smaller properties and couldn’t be used with many tractors area due to the necessary horse power requirements.
Mulcher purchase- David Breed gave a brief update on the mulcher. He explained the cooperative agreement that the Town of Cornwall entered into with 11 other towns to purchase a hydro-seeder. More than one grant was used to purchase the $20,000 unit and each town put in the balance due. He added that Highgate has a mulcher estimated at $6,000 that was purchased with a better back roads grant that they have offered to loan to the town of Franklin at no charge. Breed and Britch-Valenta had discussed the options with the Selectboard and they chose to borrow the unit from Highgate and test this machinery for the summer before making any further decisions.
Treasurer’s report- The treasurer’s report was given by Sue Clark and accepted by the board.
Upcoming dates for outreach-
Town meeting day- March 3
Pancake Breakfast- Heidi
Septic outreach day- July
Coordinator’s Report- there was no time for the coordinators report. A copy will be sent out by email.
The meeting adjourned at 9:00pm.
Dick Benton and Heidi Britch-Valenta