Sunday, July 12, 2015

Wintonbury Land Trust Meeting Notes - 5/13/2015

WINTONBURY LAND TRUST – May 13, 2015, Seabury Retirement Community, Bloomfield  

Present:  Sten Caspersson, Jim Trail, Dale Bertoldi, Kevin Gough, Paula Jones, Vikki Reski, Vic Herson                                                                                               

1.  Minutes for the April 8, 2015 Board Meeting were approved.   

2.  There were no additions to the agenda. 

3.  The 2015 draft Budget was approved (see below) with one change; $5,000 of additional funding for Thrall stewardship was removed and will be deferred to the 2016 Budget.   

4.  The Board approved a proposed Bylaw Amendment regarding the Land Trust’s Conflict of Interest policies and procedures.  The Board will recommend to the membership that this amendment be approved by the membership at the Annual Meeting on June 10th.

5.  Committee Reports

a)      Grants

1.      Hawk Hill Property – The closing was April 23rd.  We discussed launching a “Save the Barn” campaign; Dale estimates we’ll need at least $40,000 to $45,000.  Sten, Dale, Vic, and Chip will form a Committee to begin work on this initiative.  Dale also reported that our 1772 Foundation Grant application for stabilization funds for this barn was rejected.

b)      Financial

1.      Updated insurance will include Hawk Hill, with the additional cost paid from general operating funds.  Vikki applied for a 2014 (990 form) tax filing extension to August 15th.

2.      April 30, 2015 balances:  $13,308.70 in checking; $39,429.11 in savings; $39,047.63 in restricted funds. 

3.      There was general discussion about the Treasurer duties as described in the Bylaws.  There was general agreement that the Treasurer should not be responsible for maintaining the membership database.  Currently, membership forms/dues are sent to the Treasurer, but we do not yet have a Membership Committee Chair for the Treasurer to hand the information off to.  We do not have a solution at present, but will collectively work to keep the database updated until we have a Membership Chair.  Kevin and Paula offered to help as best they can in the interim.

4.      Board members and Committee Chairs are responsible for managing their expenses for projects to the amounts budgeted in the approved 2015 Budget, attached below.

c)      Events

1.      Annual Meeting on June 10th – Paula will submit articles to the Hartford Courant’s MyTowns and to the Bloomfield Messenger publicizing the meeting.  Seabury has generously agreed to provide the refreshments (and space) at no charge.

2.      Presentation at Seabury on May 9th –Paula, Chip, and Jim Trail’s presentation on the Land Trust was well received.  Our host was Seabury’s In Support of Democracy (ISOD) group, whose members asked many thoughtful questions about our properties and activities. 

3.      Celebrate Bloomfield (5/30 to 6/7) – The Land Trust is set for our Trails Day hikes in conjunction with Celebrate Bloomfield week.  Sten offered to staff the Land Trust table at the Sacred Heart Church concert on June 5th.

d)     Capacity Building

1.      Board positions – We will follow up with Sharon Mann regarding her interest in serving a trial 1-year term.     

2.      Membership Drive – We will run an article in our May newsletter reminding people to renew their memberships if they have not done so this year.  We will also have copies of our new membership brochure available at our upcoming public events.  

 e)      Stewardship

1.      Stout Family Fields:  Pending confirmation with John Stout and Pat Sullivan, a field maintenance work day will be held on May 30th.

2.      Lisa Lane:  The Community Garden opened on Mother’s Day.  All plots have been rented.

3.      The annual NRCS inspections of Lisa Lane and Stout Family Fields are due in June.

 5.  New Business

a)    Next meeting date:  Annual Meeting, June 10, 2015, (2nd Wednesday of the month), 6:30 – 8:30 p.m., Seabury Retirement Community.

b)   Selection Committee, Hawk Hill Farm lease – A selection committee including community members and farm experts will be formed to review the lease applicants for the 2016 season.  Dale reported that we may have an opportunity to sign a short-term lease for the 2015 season. 

c)    Community Question and Answer – Sten suggested the Board consider undertaking a “post-it” exercise session – what is the Land Trust currently as an organization, and what is the organization that we want.

Meeting adjourned at 8:00 p.m.
Recorded by Paula Jones

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