THORNDIKE POND CONSERVATION ASSOCIATION
Minutes of Annual Meeting
Meeting Place, Jaffrey Center, N.H.
August 1, 2009
The 50th Annual Meeting of the TPCA was called to order by President Jim Banghart at 10 AM. 45 members representing 29 families were present constituting a voting quorum.
President Banghart introduced John Field, Chairman of the Jaffrey Conservation Commission, who described the process by which the ConComm was able to support our Lake Host program. Mr. Field outlined the four cornerstones of the ConComm‘s work: the townwide Natural Resource Inventory (NRI), the Land Acquisition Capital Reserve Fund (LACRF), the Open Space Committee which prioritizes desirable land for conservation, and the Monadnock Community Conservation Project, a joint venture with the Monadnock Conservancy, Southwest Regional Planning Commission, and the Society for the Protection of NH Forests. For more information, visit http://town.jaffrey.nh.us/ and click on Commissions in the menu bar.
TPCA business commenced with a vote to accept the minutes of the 2008 Annual Meeting. Jim Banghart then welcomed new members Roberta and Bill Schnook (31 Point Road), Anne Stuart and Paul Santos (517 Thorndike Pond Road), and Marc and Betsey Winiecki (551 Thorndike Pond Road). He noted that the Wheeler property is for sale and reminded members of our courtesy custom of giving TPCA members advance notice when properties go on sale.
Banghart spoke enthusiastically about the Storm Damage Chipping endeavor undertaken by the Board in April, which received hearty response and participation from many members. A related initiative, sparked by VP Sam Hackler, has freed the Pond of many snags and dead trees. Many kudos with special mention of the great sense of neighborliness engendered by this project.
This Fall a full 5-board draw-down will take place. This will drop the pond level by up to 39” and is intended to allow removal of storm snags along the shoreline. For members who want to clean their waterfronts, this would be an appropriate time. The drawdown will commence in September. Watch for details at www.thorndike.org . This year’s drawdown will also support a request of John and Betsy Harris of Stonewall Farm in Dublin, downstream along Stanley Brook, who would like the streams flow halted to accommodate major dam repairs at their farm.
The President requested a moment of silence in memory of long-time and recently-departed TPCA members Don Austermann, founding member Herbert Grant, and Susan Fritz.
Banghart then made one-year appointments of Don Strickland, Bernie Hampsey and Susy Mansfield as auditors of The Fund for Thorndike Pond.
Secretary/Treasurer Susy Mansfield paid tribute to our Annual Meeting Ways & Means team, Janet Grant and Pat Scholl. She requested updates to the Shoreline Property Owner’s List and Map, and e-mail addresses from those who wish to be included electronically. We will need a new Secretary/Treasurer after this year; interested members please request the job description.
The Financial Statement as of June 30 shows an increase in revenue for ‘08-‘09 due to the good response to our year-end Fund appeal and to memorial donations made at the request of Herbert Grant’s family. Interest income was predictably down and expenses incrementally up. The use of Self Addressed Stamped Envelopes adds cost and nets results. It was moved by J. Grant, seconded by E. Ginsburg and voted that the Financial Report be received.
Don Strickland spoke for The Fund, applauding the response to the ‘08 Fund Appeal, thanking the Grant family for their memorial support, and explaining the modest expense for the rental of the chipper used for Ice Storm cleanup. Another low-key appeal will be made in December.
Jim Banghart reported on the most recent Volunteer Lake Assessment Program (VLAP) water tests, which are done monthly from June to August. Test results show greater clarity and low phosphorus levels. Other tests show that Thorndike Pond has an acid pH and low levels of mercury, as do most other water bodies in NH. For details on the freshwater fish consumption advisory please visit www.wildlife.state.nh.us/fishing . View our report on the website.
Jo Benedek gave her annual Weed Watcher’s Report, reminding us to be diligent in uprooting watershield and bur-reed which are coming in thick especially in the southwest part of the Pond.
We have another successful Lake Host season with volunteers coordinated by Evie Hammerman and paid Lake Hosts supervised by Susy Mansfield. The participation of both Camp WaKlo and Camp Wanocksett greatly adds to our Ramp coverage and our grant funding match. The amount of our grant from the NH Lakes Association depends on the number of motorized boats we inspect. We greatly appreciate the financial support of the Jaffrey Conservation Commission this year. Constant vigilance keeps our Pond clean!
Jim Banghart then introduced Nancy Belletete, who will coordinate social festivities for our 50th Anniversary Season in 2010. Nancy described a dinner party and a weekend of festivities and asked for volunteers to join the planning committee. Any ideas for the celebration should be forwarded to Nancy directly or through the website.
Don Strickland carries on the work begun by our late and lamented Don Austermann, heading up the History Project to be published in honor of the occasion. Deadline early January 2010; send your written or photographic contribution! Don welcomes support on contributing pieces to the history of Thorndike Pond. Contributions can be made by contacting Don Directly or through the website.
On behalf of the Nominating Committee, Rod Mackenzie presented a slate for the coming year:
- President - Jim Banghart
- VP - Sam Hackler
- Secretary/Treasurer - Susy Mansfield
- Board of Directors for terms ending 2010
- Richard Webb
- Ginger Maurer
- Board of Directors for terms ending 2011
- Patty Scholl
- Bob Melzer
It was moved, seconded and voted that nominations be closed and that the Secretary cast one ballot in favor of the slate as presented.
President Banghart then outlined a history of Whittemore Island which is now owned by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and monitored by Anne Banghart on behalf of the TPCA. TNC would like to pass ownership on to the TPCA or The Monadnock Conservancy, or the Town of Jaffrey, with the TPCA holding the conservation easement. The position of the TPCA Board is that we prefer the status quo, are pleased to continue the easement monitoring, and would favor The Monadnock Conservancy as default owner. We have given that position to TNC with the stipulation that should the Monadnock Conservancy not want to assume ownership of the island the TPCA would reassess our position before supporting deeding the property to the town of Jaffrey.
Under Other Business, John Rowlands expressed concern about the population density at the Bolles/Monadnock Bible Conference beach, including their sanitary arrangements and the amount and speed of their boats in August. The TPCA Board will take this under advisement.
Bob Carr asked for a show of hands of those who would favor expanding no-wake restrictions throughout the Pond. With a balanced show of hands, Bob said he would research legal options that may be taken to restrict boat speeds.
Members are reminded that boats violating speed and wake/no-wake regulations should be called in to the Marine Patrol at 603-293-2037. Bow numbers can also be reported at www.nhmarinepatrol.com .
Eddie Ginsburg moved that actions taken by the Board since August 2008 be ratified, and it was seconded by Eila Mackenzie and so voted.
Adjourned at 12:20 to the Parish Hall for luncheon.
Respectfully submitted, Susy Mansfield, Secretary