Frederick County

Forest Conservancy District Board

April 14, 2014 Meeting Minutes

Those Present: Steve Thrasher, Claude Eans, Vince Perrotta, Jim Arnold, Cecile Arnold, Ginny Brace, Heather Montgomery, Keith Schoonover, Tyson Rose, Mike Kay

  1. Call to Order: Keith called the meeting to order.
  2. Treasurer’s Report: Tom submitted the report via email. Some of the highlights of the report included the acquisition of $262.50 from Neighborhood Green, $650.00 Frederick County FY-2014 appropriation, and $2.22 interest. Heather asked Mike to sign an ongoing MOU the County Drafted which Mike did. Heather also mentioned that she would be sending Tom an invoice soon for the Neighborhood Green funds that we have collected.
  3. Logging Site Exams: Mike reports that no plans had arrived prior to the meeting.
  4. Woodsboro Tree Planting: Jim reported that he, Mike, Hailu, and Aaron Cook helped facilitate the planting of 1,800 trees at Woodsboro Park along with about 100 volunteers from the Scouts, Lions Club International, and assorted volunteers from around the county. We established about 4.0 acres of new plantings and filled in about 1.0 acre previous plantings where a tree was missing. The planting began at 8:00 am and concluded by 11:00 am when we all enjoyed a lunch provided by Trout’s store. (Let me tell you that chicken is the bomb!) Jim took a number of photos that he will send to Tyson for the Web Page.
  5. Neighborhood Green: Heather gave on overview of the program now that the two year expiration of the original grant has occurred. Some of the highlights include, providing 2 workshops that were attended by over 100 individuals, making 113 site visits for interested landowners, establishing 51 acres of plantings (20,000 trees planted.) and establishing nearly 6,500 feet of riparian forest buffer. Heather mentioned that Neighborhood Green will undergo a bit of a change going forward and she will keep us appraised on the new program once it is fully developed. Heather also mentioned that a 3.5 acre school planting was established this year and a planting of 50 trees will be done at Monocacy Elementary school on April 24.
  6. Nature Notes: Ginny is getting concerned that we are running short on articles and we discussed ways to build up the backlog. Some suggestions included doing an article on plant damage as a result of last winter, an article on eagles, other bird articles, and looking back at the archives for previous articles to utilize.
  7. Web Site: Tyson mentioned that he has archived all of the past Nature Notes and suggested that we look here for some pertinent articles.
  8. Stink Bugs: Did anyone notice how “thick” the stinkbugs were at Gambrill last night?
  9. FCC Program: Ginny provided a summary of the program. Ginny and Mike enjoyed developing and teaching the program and we thought it was well received. The final class included the planting of containerized trees near the front of the College. Ginny mentioned that she was able to purchase these plants from Stadler’s and Clear Ridge Nursery at no cost to the Forestry Board. Ginny indicated that the class is going to get together soon to brainstorm some ideas for future courses and if some wine and cheese is consumed so be it. Ginny also mentioned that there is serious discussion with FCC for another program to be held in the fall that will include class time and field trips to Waterford Park.
  10. Other Business
    • Keith mentioned that he has been working with Ann Bradley at Planning and Zoning to rectify the eviction of his craft workshop from the farm being considered for the easement and he said that he really appreciates Ann’s efforts. Keith is hopeful that he will not be evicted.
    • Claude mentioned that he has appreciated Andy Driscoll’s presence at our meetings and asked the Board to consider asking Andy to join the Board. Heather seconded the motion and it was passed by the Board. Mike will send an application for membership to Andy.
    • Heather mentioned that she received a promotion at her work with renewed responsibilities and job duties. Heather was excited for the changes and said that her position will now be funded by general funds instead of by grants. Heather also mentioned that the Office of Sustainability will be developing a position of tree planting coordinator and she asked us to spread the word about the position to people that might be qualified or interested.
    • Ginny piqued our interest in the smoke tree which is a native plant found mostly in the southern states as opposed to the smoke bush which is non native. (Perhaps there is a NN article there somewhere?)
    • Claude mentioned that he contacted the Boy Scouts to see if they might be interested in another Forestry Merit Badge training program and Melissa Udbinac and Bill Desmond got back to him saying that they certainly would be and suggested that we do it sometime in October. Claude will get together with them and firm up a date. Claude would also like to provide a portable sawmill so the Scouts can see how lumber is made from a tree. Mike suggested that we take a look at the agenda to determine how to free up some of our time so we can mingle a bit and not be saddled with doing 6 programs throughout the day. Mike suggested that we should consider fewer programs with a larger group size as an option.
    • Ginny mentioned that there are a lot of downed trees at Waterford and if anybody is interested in obtaining firewood she could contact City Arborist, Tom Rippeon to see if they could acquire some.
    • Vince mentioned that he and Mike visited the Harry George property the morning that planting began and although he did not receive the I-Pad as promised, he was nonetheless able to take some photos with his smart phone. Mike also took some photos with his good ole digital camera. Vince intends to stop by and take some “after” photos now that the project is complete.
    • Mike mentioned that meeting in Gambrill Office is a bit cramped and we discussed alternative meeting areas. Subsequent to the meeting Mike talked to Mark Spurrier and Mark suggested that the Board use the Tea Room at Gambrill for meetings until the tractor rebuild is completed in the Park Bay.