Town of Holderness, NH

Conservation Commission Meeting

April 15, 2008

Town Office


CALL TO ORDER:   The meeting was called to order at 4:10 p.m. by Chairman Spencer.


PRESENT:  Larry Spencer, Shelagh Connelly, Jackie Jewell, Anne Packard, Barbara Currier, and Janet Cocchiaro.


OTHERS PRESENT:   David Lorch (town planner) and Anne Abear (municipal secretary)


MINUTES:   Ms. Currier moved and Mrs. Cocchiaro seconded to approve the minutes of the March 18, 2008 as written.  Vote was unanimous.  Motion passed.




1.      Presentation by Anne Packard – Mr. Spencer announced that Ms. Packard would be presenting an Environmental Colloq. regarding creatures of Mirror Lake at PSU on April 23, 2008 beginning at 4:00 p.m. at Boyd Hall 001.

2.      Watershed Conference – Mr. Spencer advised the conference would be held on April 16 and is being put on by NH DES.  The conference will be held at the Grapone Center in Concord.




a.      Town Energy Committee Meeting – Mr. Spencer advised this committee met and have reviewed the energy audit that was conducted by NHEC.  The audit showed few areas in which could be improved within the Town buildings.  Mr. Johnson will be reviewing the audit with the individual departments and making suggestions to them.

b.      Comprehensive Shoreland Protection Meeting – Ms. Connelly advised the meeting was held on April 3 and 9 towns were represented at the meeting.  32 people attended the presentation.  Ms. Arlene Allen did a great job with the presentation.  Ms. Connelly inquired if the commission wished to have a part in or to be a reviewing committee to any permits that may be submitted to the State during the Shoreland Protection permitting process.  Members of the Board advised they felt it was important for the Commission to be informed as to what applications are being requested and Ms. Connelly will draft a letter to the Board of Selectmen advising them of the wishes of the Commission for the Board to review at the next meeting. 

c.      Spring Vernal Pools Workshop – Mr. Spencer advised that 6 people attended the workshop and the slides used during the presentation will be available on the Commission’s website.  The Commission advised they were still collecting information on vernal pools throughout the community and anyone could send Chairman Spencer an email regarding vernal pools on their property and he would add it to the list. In the discussion of vernal pools, comments were made about salt and sand on the roads. The commission felt it would be a good idea to invite Peter Furmanick to a future meeting to talk about practices and policies about salt and sand on the roads. The chair will contact Mr. Furmanick

d.      Update on Royea’s – Ms. Currier advised that the Board of Selectmen held a public hearing on the renewal of the junkyard license and further discussed the prioritization of the conditions that will be placed on the license in the coming year, at the last meeting.  The priority of the Board of Selectmen will be to get fire lanes established within the junkyard for safety reasons.  Ms. Currier advised a walk through will be scheduled when some of the snow is gone.  This walk through will be in conjunction with NH DES.  Further, the Ms. Currier advised that the Selectmen or their agent continue to have access to the property for any future walk through as necessary. 

e.      Saving Special Places Meeting – Mr. Spencer discussed the meeting that was held at Keasarge regarding conservation easement.




a.      Meeting with Selectboard concerning commission membership – Mr. Spencer and Ms. Currier discuss the recent meeting with the Board of Selectmen regarding the reappointment of Ms. Jewell and Ms. Packard.  Mr. Spencer advised that the Commission has created policies in the past that compel members of the Board who are abutters to a property to recuse themselves from acting upon an issue as a member of the commission, further, a policy had been created that no member of the Commission can enter upon private property without being requested or without permission.  Ms. Jewell inquired if the Selectmen were informed that she did recuse herself from the Reynolds case?  Mr. Spencer and Ms. Currier advised they did notify the Selectmen of that circumstance.  Mr. Spencer will place the new policy on the Commission’s website.


b.      Attendance policy – Ms. Connelly moved and Mr. Spencer supported to create a policy in which the Commission will advise members who miss (3) three consecutive unexcused scheduled meetings will be sent a letter from the Commission Chairman questioning their continued interest in the Commission.  Vote was unanimous.  Motion passed.  


c.      David Lorch, Town Planner – Mr. Lorch discussed the grants that are available for the development of low income properties that encourage and create open conservation lands.  The grant application process for the spring has passed, but will be opening again in the fall.  Mr. Spencer discussed the possibility of this grant being available for the golf course area to keep the property open for recreational lands. 


Mr. Lorch advised he has been working with the GIS and Granite programs and is looking at the future possibility of mapping out all of the fire roads in conjunction with skiing maps to get more use of the properties that are available for recreational purposes within the Town. 


d.      Possible future conservation lands – The Board discussed the Huckins farm property.  Chairman Spencer will approach Mr. Huckins about the future use of his land.  Chairman Spencer advised he is still planning on meeting with Mr. LaRochelle to discuss the Reynolds property.


e.      SLA’s perimeter survey – Ms. Connelly advised that SLA has completed a perimeter survey of the lakes and inquired if anyone knew what this information would be used for?  Members of the Board requested Chris Devine to attend a future meeting to discuss this.


f.        Pilote forest trail work – Mrs. Cocchiaro will contact former Commissioner Reggie Pettit to discuss scheduling a date for trail work within the Pilote Forest.


g.      4H Camp Scholarship - Chairman Spencer discussed a request of UNH for the Commission to sponsor a child to attend 4H Camp.  Mrs. Jewell advised she spoke to a member of the Holderness School and advised that the Commission had offered a $100 scholarship.  The commission will leave it up to the school as to how the scholarship is divided.


h.      It was agreed that for the June meeting, the board would try to schedule a visit to one of the Town’s Prime Wetlands.


The next meeting of the Commission will take place on Tuesday, May 13, 2008 beginning at 4:00 p.m.  Member of the Board decided they would not have a meeting during the months of July and August unless it is deemed necessary.


ADJOURNMENT:  Mr. Spencer adjourned the meeting at 5:25 p.m. 



Respectfully submitted,

Anne M. Abear

Municipal Secretary