Rec. Comm. Minutes of Special Meeting April 27, 2021

April 28, 2021

Recreation Commission Special Meeting Minutes, April 27, 20 21

Present: Chuck Hulse, Linda Burger, Phil Scott
Absent: David Hobbs, Carol Tremble

Due to technical issues on my part, a ZOOM link to the meeting for the public was not published.

Meeting called to order at 7:00 PM

1. Acknowledge minutes of last meeting – This was tabled to the next meeting.

2. Tom Chagnon has resigned from the Recreation Commission. The Recreation Commission thanks him for his service.

3. Public input: As noted above, the link to the meeting was not published. My apologies.

4. Beach parking attendant contract. The contract with GMCS was sent out to the members of the committee for their input. Chuck will sign the contract on behalf of the Recreation Commission and send it to GMCS. The representative from GMCS asked that a representative be available each day that the parking attending is on site to assist or answer questions. Carol had agreed to fulfill this role in the past, but it may require members of the rec commission to split up the days.

5. Activity Survey. Phil sent out a copy of the community survey to members of the committee. The survey is designed to find out what type of recreational activities the South Hero community would be interested in. The survey will be posted on FPF. Chuck will check with the Town Clerk to see if a link to the survey can be posted on the front page of the town website. Phil will check with the Islander about an article related to the survey to be placed in the South Hero section of the paper.

6. Summer activities.
Swim lessons – lessons are available in North Hero and Colchester. The recreation commission will reimburse families for the swim lessons. A link to the form to be used for reimbursement is located on the town website. Phil contacted the YMCA. They are not doing off-site swim lessons, but have a program where communities can get lessons on site.
Bike safety program – Chuck looked into the Bike Trailer though Local Motion. They rent a trailer (with bikes, helmets, etc.) to communities one week at a time. But, the community must provide a trained person to facilitate the training. Plans for a bike safety day with – bike safety training, GI Sheriff involvement, free helmets, etc. will tabled to a future meeting.
Boat safety training – Phil contacted a qualified boat safety instructor who would be willing to teach a boat safety course. Phil would provide a boat. Future plans will depend on the results from the activity survey to see if community members are interested in such an activity.
Tryathalon – discussion of plans for the Tryathalon was tabled to the next meeting. Awaiting more up to date COVID guidance as to whether the event will be possible.

7. Beach parking notification. Erin Morse, the Town Clerk, was looking for information that could be included with beach parking passes that explain the rules according to the ordinance. Chuck has sent her a document outlining the stipulations of the ordinance. Erin can modify it as she sees appropriate. Erin was also looking for the information that would be given to vehicles that in violation of the ordinance. She requested that information about parking passes be directed to the online form on the website rather than directly to the Town Clerk’s office. And, she requested that the information sheet state that the non-resident lottery is closed.

8. Recreation Commission membership / recruitment. The Recreation Committee needs new members. This issue was tabled until the next meeting. Chuck will bring Phil Scott name to the Select Board for appointment to the Recreation Commission. Chuck will contact the Town Clerk to straighten out the terms of each of the members of the Commission.

Meeting adjourned at 7:50 pm.

Next meeting, Thursday, May 13th at 7 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Chuck Hulse

Rec. Comm. Trails Subcommittee Minutes-April 22, 2021

April 28, 2021

MINUTES

South Hero Trails Committee

Meeting of April 22, 2021 at 7:00 PM

Via Zoom

Present: Dave Hobbs (committee chair), Susan Ryan( member of committee), Bridgett Kerr (member), Guy Maguire (South Hero Land Trust), Jack Brooks (member), Pogo Senior (resident), Chuck Hulse (member), Dave, Emily (South Hero Land Trust), Peter O’Malley (member)

Dave welcomed Pogo to the meeting as a member of the public and invited his comments on the “Knee Deep” trail, see below for details.

The group went through each of the public trails in town and discussed management needs and various members volunteered to be “Trail Stewards” for public trails. Each trail steward volunteer agreed to ascertain trail conditions on a regular basis (every 2 months or so) and report to the committee and suggest actions for each trail to address needs/concerns for access. Chuck mentioned that some members of the committee were not able to make it, so the group agreed to keep these trail steward appointments flexible until those other committee members had a chance to also pick trails. The group also agreed that there could be more than one trail steward per trail, who could work together and cover for eachother when needed.

Trails discussed were as follows:

1) Roy Marsh Trail – Chuck Hulse volunteered to steward this trail. Guy mentioned that Neal Blanchard might also like to be involved as steward on this trail. Chuck and Dave discussed various needs on the trail. Chuck has been cleaning up trash this spring along the trail.

2) Tracy Woods Trail and Landon Community Trail – Emily suggested Guy/South Hero Land Trust be the primary trail steward for Tracy Woods, Round Pond, and Landon Trail, as these are all conserved properties owned by different private landowners (and the state, in the case of Round Pond) with easements held by Vermont Land Trust, Lake Champlain Land Trust, and the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board. SHLT has been coordinating trail work with these partners on these trails for many years and so it makes sense for them to continue to be the main point of contact. Guy also welcomed others to be co-stewards of these trails.

4) Round Pond Trail: VT State Parks (the owners of the parcel) have not been able to consistently keep the public trails mowed in the last three years, SHLT has been in communication with Parks and they have tentatively agreed to let SHLT coordinate a volunteer to mow the trails. Emily invited volunteers to help with that. Dave and Jack both expressed their interest, and also mentioned that Bob Chutter may be interested as well.

5) Landon- Round Pond Connector Trail: Dave and Bob Chutter already mow this trail, and Dave offered to be the steward of this trail as well. While also on the Round Pond property, SHLT already has permission to mow this trail from a separate agreement with State Parks.

6) Bike Ferry Trail. The committee discussed the fact that this trail is owned by VT State F&W and co-managed by Local Motion, so it is not our responsibility per se, but that a volunteer could still go out and assess trail needs and do minor maintenance like clearing sticks and trash from the trail. Local Motion has also been engaging with SHLT, the Selectboard, and the Rec Commission to plan how to address safety concerns at the intersection of the Allen point access road and Martin Rd, and there will be new signs going up and potentially more as well. The group also discussed looking at how other towns have dealt with cyclist/resident interactions. One possibility is to apply for a VOREC grant from the state to come up with a recreation/economic impact plan for the town. Chuck said the Rec. Commission will follow up with SHLT and Local Motion. Jack offered to talk to his contacts at the Kingdom Trails Association and how they have handled recreation access and safety as the area has grown in popularity with mountain bikers.

The committee then discussed 4 potential public access trails that are not currently open but could be some day:

1) Keeler Bark Park Trail – Guy reported that Brock Freyer, our district wetlands ecologist, and he walked the property earlier that day. Brock approved of the trail and commended the builders on their use of puncheon style boardwalks so as to negate any impediments to waterflow where the trail crosses the wetland. He will send a follow up email to Guy reiterating his support and his affirmation that no wetlands permits are needed for the trail as presently planned. Guy is now following up with the permitting specialists for Shorelines, Transportation, and Act 250 to determine what permits, if any, we will need. Preliminary discussions suggest we will not need any permits, but we are awaiting final confirmation on that, at which point we will send that to the selectboard as requested and presumably more forward with the trail, hoping to open this summer.

2) Knee Deep Bay Trail – Pogo shared that he is the new owner of the property where this trail is located. Since there is no parking and the area is a quiet neighborhood, he felt more comfortable with it being for neighbors only, and not to be a high-use trail. Dave said that there was a settlement document that outlines future use that came about from a lawsuit between the former owner and the town, that he would like to go over with Pogo. Dave and Pogo agreed to find a time to go walk the trail. Pogo also said the trail is very hard to traverse with many down trees and difficult terrain. Nancy Patch, the county forester, has assessed the trees on the property and determined they needed to stay because of shoreline regulations, but Pogo was able to go in and clear some branches to make the trail more accessible.

3) “Lavin Property” Trail (tentative, not actual) – No changes on the status of this trail. Bridgett agreed to be the steward of this trail if and when we are able to make it a public access site, and will help keep the project moving forward in the meantime.

4) Robinson Farm Trail (tentative, not actual) – The committee has been talking with Steve Robinson and other neighboring landowners about a potential trail to connect the Roy Marsh to South Street. Emily, Steve and Guy are doing some research into the survey maps for the property that we need before moving forward or contacting/following up with other landowners.

5) Recreation Park/Water Wigglers Trail – Bridgett offered to steward this trail. SHLT turned in the application for the storywalk project grant and is waiting to hear back.

The committee also discussed creating an information pamphlet based off the trails case statement which can be used for outreach purposes. Guy will send the draft that Bridgett and him worked on.

March 18, 2021 Rec Comm Minutes

March 24, 2021

South Hero Recreation Commission  3/18/2021

Notes

In Attendance: Dave Hobbs, Linda Burger, Chuck Hulse, Phil Scott, Thomas Chagnon

Not In Attendance: Carol Tremble, Tree Cononi

Public Attendance: Mike Donaghue

Meeting was called to order at 7:25pm after technical difficulties.

First order of business: Reviewed beach attendant manual. Chuck suggested adjusting line items 6 through 10 and 12 to align with potentially hiring a private security company, Green Mountain Concert Services. There were suggestions to adjust some of the descriptions. Additional line items to revise include; weather, calling out, and work schedule. It was also brought up that the South Hero Road Crew will not paint parking lines. Chuck will confirm with the road crew on this matter. There was discussion on how to get the charcoal grills cleaned at the beach and general cleaning of the beach. Dave and Chuck also suggested contacting Folsom School for potential student community service hours for beach clean up/maintenance. LInda will make revisions to the manual. Once they are complete they will be presented to the Selectboard.

 

LInda recommended water quality testing at White’s Beach. The cost of the test is $15 and should be done weekly. The test should be done on Monday and overnighted for valid readings. Chuck suggested the Recreation Commision may not be the appropriate Town Department to oversee this responsibility. Linda questioned how to make sure the park attendants are visible to guests. Linda will speak with GMCS if hired to confirm uniforms. Chuck motions to make change to the park attendant manual and the corrections will be presented to the Selectboard on March 22nd, 2021. Dave second. All in favor.

 

There was review of the GMCS price quote for park attendant pertaining to the summer of 2021. The quote included one park attendant per weekend day from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend. The quote was $6700.00 with an hourly rate ranging from $30-45 an hour. This would be $30 an hour for non holiday weekends and $45 an hour on holiday weekends. Dave maked a motion to move forward with GMCS for a park attendant. Tom seconds motion. All in favor.

 

South Hero’s Town Clerk Erin Morse requested guidance on parking and permit regulations for the upcoming summer (2021). She is asking who can and cannot park at White’s Beach. She suggested needing a parking sticker and stating where the permit should be placed on the vehicle. Dave suggested eliminating out of town passes for the 2021 season to reduce overcrowding and to make the beach more accessible for South Hero residents. Tom brought up what the original deed states regarding who can access the beach, and what are acceptable uses of the beach.  The original deed/lease agreement states, “To have and to hold the premises and will keep all and singular the said premises in a well kept manner and will not allow the use of said lands except by bonafide residents of the town or guests thereof when accompanied by such residents.” Dave made a motion to inform the town clerk that we will be offering resident parking passes for $5. All in favor.

 

There was discussion on whether to offer non resident passes for White’s Beach for the summer of 2021. After further discussion Chuck made a motion to offer a limited number of non-resident passes. Second by LInda. All in favor, Phil. Dave and Thomas did not approve.

 

There was discussion on whether day passes for White’s beach should be offered. Tom questioned how to enforce the day pass, and is it a service GMCS offers? Linda suggested trying to offer day passes and a flyer on how to obtain permanent passes at the Town Hall. After further discussion it seems that for the 2021 season it is not feasible to offer day passes.

 

Parking violation/notice flyers were discussed. Phil read a copy of the proposed parking violation flyer/notice. Suggestions were made to reword flyers including the line: “you are receiving this violation”. Linda will revise the parking warning flyer/notice and will discuss the revisions at a future meeting. Chuck motioned to end the meeting. Phil second to close meeting. Everyone is encouraged to attend the South Hero Selectboard meeting on 3/22/2021.

 

March 11, 2021 Rec. Comm. Minutes

March 14, 2021

South Hero Park and Recreation Commission Meeting minutes
Date: March 11, 2021
Attendees: Members                   Guests
Name: Dave Hobbs present          Jerry Robinson
Linda Burger present                     David Carter
Chuck Hulse present                      Emily Alger
Thereza Cononi absent                 Guy Maguire
Carol Tremble absent
Phil Scott present
Tom Chagnon present
Erin Morse absent
Chairman : Dave Hobbs called the meeting to order at 7:05pm
This commission holds meetings on the 2nd Thursday every other month at 7pm. The trails subcommittee meets every other month on the opposite months to the commission on the 2nd Thursday of these months at 7pm as well.
1st order of business : review of January 2021 meeting minutes; no corrections or additions
Call for motion to approve by Chuck Hulse; 2nd by Linda Burger; all present members vote to approve

2nd order of business: selection /election of commission officers
Dave Hobbs initiated Discussion of introducing a vice chairperson position to support the chairperson and eventually transition to the role of chairperson; following brief discussion of the role a motion by Chuck Hulse and seconded by Tom Chagnon to approve the new position was unanimously approved by the present members of the commission; Dave Hobbs nominated Linda Burger for this position ; seconded by Chuck Hulse and Tom Chagnon; her nomination was unanimously approved by the present members of the commission
Town Park Manager is a new position this year which Carol Tremble has volunteered to fill ; all present unanimously approve Carol for this position. Note that Phil Scott has volunteered to assist Carol in this role which is also unanimously supported by those members present today
Treasurer is Chuck Hulse and he has volunteered to continue in this role, all present members unanimously approved Chuck for the Treasurer position
Secretary is an open position since Linda will be moving to Vice chairperson: Tom Chagnon has volunteered to fill this role for the upcoming yr. Linda Burger nominated Tom for the secretary position and it was seconded by Dave Hobbs; the commission members unanimously support his taking on the role; Linda will send to Tom all information regarding the role
3rd order of business: Treasurer’s report given by Chuck Hulse
4th order of business: Town Park/beach attendant manual and finances
Lengthy discussion regarding shortcomings of the ordinance and the inconsistences this will present for anyone in the position of park attendant and his concerns regarding getting this manual to the select board ASAP made by Jerry Robinson, Chuck Hulse added that this is a first step to help improve utilization of the park appropriately and safely by all; Tom Chagnon offered that potentially having the security company fill the park attendant position will help to lessen these potential problems; there is full support by members of the commission who are present to seek to fill at least one of the park attendant positions through the security company; the members concur that this position may be too challenging for a young adult person to handle alone especially in the first year; and that Carol Tremble as Park manager will assist in determining with the security attendants when it is appropriate to seek the assistance of local law enforcement; it was requested that Phil as a new community member, take a look at the signage and designation of parking spaces for a fresh set of eyes and bring back to the commission his thoughts. Phil agreed to do that.
further discussion is necessary to approve the park attendant manual and determine the funds available in order to have adequate coverage for the weekends and holidays as well as funding for weekly water testing as recommended by the state health dept.. these discussions /decisions will be deferred to a special meeting within the next week in order to have the manual/job description to the select board for approval by March 22nd. Linda and Dave will formulate an agenda and send that to Tom so that proper notification can be completed.
Linda/Dave will ask Erin Morse to add this to the agenda of the select board meeting on March 22nd and if not possible we will have it added to the April 12th agenda
5th order of business; “ Better Places” It was shared by Guy and Emily that the grant was not obtained will table till next year when other grants might become available;
6th order of business discussion about what previous activity programs the commission has supported in the past and what ones will be canceled again this summer d/t COVID-19;Due to lack of time this was only very briefly discussed and was tabled till our next regular meeting
7th order of business Chuck simple wants people to be aware of the impact of email discussions and to avoid any response via “reply all” see copies of meeting laws for VT state government which Chuck included in his email prior to this meeting.

February 11, 2021 Trail Subcommittee Minutes

February 15, 2021

South Hero trails committee meeting minutes 2.11.21

1) Attendees Present: Dave Hobbs, Carol Tremble, Bridgett Kerr, Neal Blanchard, Peter O’Malley, Susan Ryan, Guy Maguire

2) Minutes of last meeting (December, 2020 ??) were not available to discuss

3) Working Groups

  1. A) Landowner Approach
  2. i) Robinson Farm Trail, aka Priority #3 Trail — connecting Tracy road at the “crick” to South St

The Committee is enthusiastic about this trail with the Wells family happy to support it on their land, Route to get from southeast corner of Robinson farm to South St may be difficult to negotiate… directly onto Congo church parking lot    Or eastward along Masonic southern property boundary

Carol will talk with Church officials; which will likely require more consultation with the Wells family and maybe the Masons. Dave has reached out to Jim Robinson about cemetary and Mason property.

Chuck, Susan, Bridgette also volunteered to work at the site whenever the exact route is clear. [ Editorail: Jack also volunteered later]

  1. ii) Priority #1 and #2 trails — through portions of “Lavin Property”

Discussion was sidetracked a bit by uncertainty about toxic waste from the “old town dump” which borders on a trail route we had hoped might work from the eastern border of the town Recreation Park, heading east through a piece of the “Lavin Property” to the site of the dump and beyond to the southeast to connect with the Landon Farm Trails. It would appear that dump waste might not affect a trail but could affect salability of the southeastern lot of the “Lavin property”. Chuck will look into that issue.

As far as the trail plan which was approved for a State Grant, from the Library to the Rec Park, no progress regarding easement can be reported.

  1. B) Other Trails

i)) Keeler Bay Trail Park

Guy has maintained contact with regulatory agency personnel Brock and Laura Reed who have been responding about permits from Agency of Natural Resources, V Trans, and Shoreland Protection. A staff visit to the site is envisioned.

  1. ii) Storybook Walk in the Rec Park can receive a Grant for more permanent posts with boxes for the folks walking the trail (formerly the “little wigglers trail”. This affords the walkers a chance to learn a book and get outside The Trails Committee supports the addition to our trail and is eager to help with construction.

iii) Rt 2 sidewalk project (grant support) +/- crosswalk signals

(Ed Note — We never got to that item but have supported improvenent in our sidewalks at various meetings. I feel we need more blinking light crossings, especially located where school children are traveling. Even better would be a TRAFFIC LIGHT at Rt 2 and South St  !!) (or at the Library