Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wintonbury Land Trust Meeting Notes - October 8, 2014

WINTONBURY LAND TRUST – October 8, 2014, Seabury Retirement Community, Bloomfield  
Present:  Jim Trail, Kevin Gough, Paula Jones, Vikki Reski, Dale Bertoldi, Doris Johnson, Chip Caton, Christopher Shepherd, Diane Bernier
Checking out the chicken coop at Lisa Lane Farm
1) Minutes for the September 10, 2014 Board Meeting were approved. 
2)      There were two agenda additions (items b and c under New Business). 
3)      Committee Reports
a)      Grants – (1) Evans Property – The Environmental Review is scheduled to be done by the end of October.  Dale and Vikki will follow up on timing of review completion, since information from it would be useful for the Bafflin grant submittal, due at the end of October.  Chip Caton indicated he would be approaching Duncaster as well.  (2)  Hawk Hill – The paperwork submitted by Town attorneys is still under review by NRCS.  We have submitted a request for funds for the closing to Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.
b)      Financial
1.      Our August 31, 2014 account balances are as follows:  Checking - $1,916.27; Savings - $23,221.40; Restricted - $113,547.98. 
2.      Vikki reported that our annual insurance renewal invoice had come in.  She will forward that material to the Finance Committee.
c)      Events
1.      Stewardship work days:  A work day is also scheduled for Van Otterloo on October 11th at 10 AM; rain date will be October 12th.
2.      Lisa Lane Ribbon Cutting on September 20th – see the attached NRCS Article.  Thanks to Lois Hager for donating the hay bales (which Lois will reuse in her yard).   
3.      October 4th hike from Stout Family Fields to LaSalette – Including Land Trust “guides” Dale Bertoldi, Kevin Gough, Paula Jones, and Vikki Reski, 19 hikers participated in this event.  Jim Trail reported that this hike generated more interest in the Land Trust among the Seabury Community participants.  Jim agreed that a presentation at Seabury on the Land Trust this winter would be well-received.
d)     Membership/Community/Website
1.      Membership Presentation – WLT member Christopher Shepard presented his analysis of our membership database structure, and led a discussion of what to consider as we think strategically about Membership goals.  He provided the Board with a written report that will be very useful for a (planned, yet-to-be-formed) Membership Committee.  Christopher has an extensive background working for non-profits, including running The Nature Center in Wethersfield.  He started teaching Middle School this year, so is adjusting to this new role, but graciously agreed to help us work on membership going forward.  Thank you, Christopher, for you time and interest!
2.      Newsletter – We briefly discussed content for the October newsletter.  Vikki suggested we include some of the feedback from Seabury participants in the Oct 4th Hike recap article.  Doris Johnson offered to make copies of our previous newsletter for a mailing to those few members whose e-mail addresses we lack. 
3.      Guest Diane Bernier reported that she had noticed the sign at our Thrall Farm project, and followed up by calling to find out more about the Land Trust.  Diane is a Master Gardener, lives in The Walden Woods Complex in Windsor (located near Thrall Farm), and started their Community Garden.  Welcome, Diane!
e)      Capacity Building
1.      Dale reported that he had seen Joel Neuwirth, and that Joel was firming up plans about Bloomfield Pride Week next June.   Kevin Gough offered to help as needed.
f)       Stewardship
1.      Chip Caton offered to set up a meeting with Mark Dodd to walk on The Schaffer Property.  Paula Jones, Kevin Gough, and Jim Trail asked to participate.  Paula committed to doing some work on this property as part of her Coverts Cooperator seminar participation in September. 
2.      Community Garden at Lisa Lane Farm – Vikki Reski is working with Nancy Bowden to plan a teaching/demonstration garden at Lisa Lane.  Ultimately, this could generate community participation in the larger planned Community Garden at Lisa Lane.  The Land Trust will be seeking help from the Town for this project.  Vikki talked about raised beds; Kevin Gough suggested the consideration of straw-bale gardening.  Vikki proposed using some stewardship funds for demonstration garden preparation; she will determine amount needed and e-mail the Board for approval.
4)      New Business –
a)      Next meeting dates:  (2nd) Wednesdays November 12th and December 10th at Seabury Retirement Community.  In general, we are planning on the 2nd Wednesday of the month for Board meetings.  Start time:  6 P.M. 
b)      Doris Johnson expressed her appreciation for a letter to DEEP Commission Rob Klee from Bloomfield Town Manager Phil Schenck on behalf of the town for all of Doris’ work on Lisa Lane.
c)      Dale Bertoldi reported that Windsor Land Trust President Jim Kandik had approached him about the possibility of a collaborative project around Mill Brook on the Windsor-Bloomfield line.  The Acquisition Committee will meet to consider this.  There was consensus that in principle collaborative projects with neighboring Land Trusts are beneficial, particularly in fostering a regional approach to conservation practices.
Recorded by Paula Jones