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April 12th 2006

MINUTES

Point Pleasant Beach Environmental Commission
Meeting Minutes - April 12th 2006

Meeting came to order with a quorum at 7:05 pm. Members present were Anne Lightburn (Co-Chair), Robert Autenrieth, Kathleen Foley and Joel Cooper. Councilman and liaison Mike DiCicco was in attendance although briefly due to a conflicting Council matter. Members absent, with prior excuses, were Denise Lord, Rosa Crawley, and Amy Mecuro. Member Jim Harper was absent with no excuse or notice.

Secretary’s Report / Review of Minutes
Minutes of the March 14th meeting were reviewed and approved. One omission was that Alternate Member Rosa Crawley was voted as an alternate to the Open Space Committee. Co-Chair Denise Lord previously indicated that minutes may be subject to recording and transcription by a non-commission member. Member Rob Autenrieth will continue to take handwritten notes/type up a transcription in the meantime.

Financial Report
Councilman Mike DiCicco indicated that our budget was approved as requested. Currently, the Commission has spent $100 on the Envirothon registration fee. Pending transactions are $100 for Earth Day Poster Contest Awards and $28.70 for Free Tree Giveaway materials. A total of $128.70 will be due to Member Joel Cooper. Co-Chair Anne Lightburn also indicated that some funds were spent for the County Tree Grant mailings and that she will submit her request for payment when appropriate. Member Rob Autenrieth volunteered to hand in the pending purchase orders to Town Hall while delivering any Ethics Disclosure Forms handed in at the meeting to Karen Mills (Borough Hall).

Projects

A. Ocean County Shade Tree Grant – Co-Chair Anne Lightburn indicated that at least 30 residents wish to receive trees and that even more are being requested for plantings around town. Anne, other Commission members and Dave Cavagnaro from the Beautification Committee have meet to discuss strategic planting locations as well as the types of trees that may be most suitable for this environment. Previously, the group out letters to home owners, on county roads, that discussed the project and next steps. Next, the group will be mailing the information for the grant request.
B. Parking Authority Trees – Member Joel Cooper indicated that nothing had been done in regards to tree removal/replantings in the River/Rt 35 municipal lot. Currently, there is some continuing restructuring between the Parking Authority and Town Council. Joel will continue to stay on this topic, especially once things are settled.
C. Earth Day Poster Contest – Member Joel Cooper and Member Rob Autenrieth reviewed the results of the first Environmental Commission Earth Day Poster Contest. Posters from the 4-7th grade @ Antrim and St. Peter’s Elementary schools were collected and judged by Joel, Rob and Art Teacher Sherry Minervino (Antrim). Previously secured prize awards will be handed out and a press release will be sent to the Ocean Star for publication in a future issue. The group was in agreement that the poster contest was a success and should be continued next year. Joel Cooper reported that the businesses that donated prize monies where very pleased and he felt would do more next year to increase the size of the prizes awarded. Member Kathy Foley inquired about future contests and asked for discussion about alternate projects, such as a poetry contest or recycled art contest. Members felt this was a good idea, whether in conjunction w/ a poster contest or separate, as it allows for differentiated instruction and for those who aren’t artistically inclined to participate in a different medium.


Education and Outreach

A. Tree Expert/Shade Tree Caucus (Tree Removal) – A council caucus will be held on 5/2 in regards to a proposed ordinance for tree removal/replacement on private property. An expert tree witness has been contacted and will be present at the meeting. The goal is to place something on the books that will regulate the removal/replacement of trees on private property, when building permits are required for renovations or rebuilding. Ultimate goal is to cherish and save all trees regardless of building permits, i.e., permits would be required to remove any tree which meets the minimum trunk diameter.
B. Water Conservation - No discussion - Moved to next month.
C. Dunes – After discussion on what the commission should and could do regarding dunes, it was felt that the first steps should be educational. Member Amy Mecuro (absent) is to propose some sort of education program in order to get some ideas on paper and for future discussion. Member Rob Autenrieth suggested that we get in touch with Jane McCrohan (knowledgeable about dunes) and perhaps follow the lead of other towns in order to see what they’re doing, what works, what doesn’t, etc. Anne will contact Amy with the commission’s decision to have her draw up educational proposals for the May meeting and possibly join with Bay Head’s lecture series.
D. Library Programs - Member Kathy Foley suggested that members work to develop education programs in conjunction with the Friends of Library. These usually get a decent turnout and help to get people talking about hot topics, whether they are environmental or not. Kathy admitted that although she may have a lot of knowledge on many topics, she has little time to develop a program. Members are asked to work with her and with each other in order to coordinate a future program. Topics to be discussed at a future meeting, but may include (although not limited to) water conservation, dune replenishment, recycling, etc. Member Rob Autenrieth suggested that Kathy talk to Curt Leach (Recycling Task Force) as he is very knowledgeable about the benefits of recycling along with being an excellent speaker. Additionally, Rob suggested that we look into what the Manasquan River Watershed Association (MRWA) has to offer in regards to speakers since we are currently paying for their service.


Correspondence
A. Councilman DiCicco reported that the public hearing on 3/20 in regard to the Lake of The Lillies engineer study consisted of comments about how the time frame for progress is a concern. Councilman DiCicco reiterated to the Commission that it will take time as well as money and that as much as possible will be done in the shortest time frame possible. The engineers are due to submit their plan for future steps and work will begin in the near future as $100,000 has been set aside by the town in bonded money.
B. Councilman DiCicco reported that the fire department does have absorbent materials that would be needed in the event of an oil spill. The fire department would be the first responders to such an incident.
C. Relative to flood insurance, Councilman DiCicco reported that the council is taking action to get additional rating points on the community rating system. Current plans call for the Public Works department to start focusing on dune maintenance.
D. Sea Coast Property – Member Joel Cooper asked Councilman DiCicco to update the Commission on the Sea Coast property situation. Sea Coast is not owned by the town, although the town does plan to take title in the near future. The borough will be drilling three more wells for testing. One solution to remedy this problem is to allow for natural evaporation of any contamination. Once this occurs, the town may choose to proceed with an acquisition of the land.
E. OCEA Minutes – The most recent meeting minutes received were reviewed by Co-Chair Anne Lightburn, who inquired as to how the agency was updated to our recent business. Member Rob Autenrieth indicated that he had been e-mailing electronic copies of all approved meeting minutes to a contact @ OCEA. This will continue in the future along with our review of the OCEA happenings. Member Joel Cooper requested that Co-Chair Denise Lord still attend a future meeting. Member Rob Autenrieth commented that there really isn’t a need to do so as we get previous meeting minutes through the mail. Member Kathy Foley suggests that we continue to study minutes of the OCEA and that we do try to attend a meeting.
F. Envirothon (High School Contest) – Member Joel Cooper recently worked with High School Environmental Science Club Advisor Kristine Tooker in order to get interested students involved in the NJ “Envirothon.” Although originally thought to be a project, the Envirothon turned out to be a contest where students participate in an academic setting environment. Joel inquired about the status of the team and will need to be in touch with Kristine prior to the event. Anne will contact Kristine for an update on who is participating.

Old Business/Status Reports

A. Recycling Task Force – Member Kathy Foley indicated that the town is seeking a part time recycling coordinator to work closely w/ Bob Meany. This will allow Town Public to better monitor the recycling activities of both residents and local businesses, including those who recycle with an outside disposal company. Member Joel Cooper inquired about the number of people serving on the group. Member Rob Autenrieth indicated that he had attended the most recent meeting of the group and reported that although the group is small, they’re very efficient in working together and have a lot of great ideas to better inform citizens and improve recycling efforts. Some highlights from their recent meeting were learning about the expense for removing grass clippings, the amount of money the town makes (post expenses) from their recycling efforts, what can be done to improve the drop off center, how items such as clam shells can be used as an impervious surface (driveways), etc.
B. Lake Task Force – Although absent from this meeting, Alternate-Member Rosa Crawley is in the process of drafting a mission statement/list, list of objectives and composition of the Lake Task Force. This will be submitted to Council after review by Environmental Commission members. The purpose of this draft is to establish some manner of purpose for this sub-committee in their efforts to maintain the quality of our three major lakes in town. All members are asked to submit ideas for review. This will be discussed at the next meeting.
C. Open Space Committee – Co-Chair Anne Lightburn indicated that the Committee is up and running. A list of members (including those from other Commissions/Committees) was read along with details for their first meeting (4/27 @ 6:30 pm,). A project team will be formed, from the committee, to work with a consultant in an attempt to apply for a matching ANJEC grant.
D. Lake of The Lillies (Cherry Trees) – Co-Chair Anne Lightburn reported that the two cherry trees are not doing well, although they will remain at their current location until they survive, die or are removed.

New Business
A. Free Trees to Residents – Month of April
B. April 29 Sat. Risden’s Beach Clean Ocean Action Clean-Up @ 9:00am
C. Envirothon Contest – May 5
D. Ocean County Shade Tree Grant – May 15

Meeting Adjournment – 9:00 pm


Published May15, 2006 | Environmental Commission Minutes | 253


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