Present: Cheri Strenz, Bill Cunningham, Jeff Caldwell, Laura Bullard, John Johnson, Ranny Akers, Cecil Doyle, Jackson Beamer, Steve Rapp, Darryl Sarver, David Peake, Joe Guthrie, Lars Johnson
Minutes of the January 12, 2017 Board meeting were approved as written.
President Cheri Strenz:
Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Review – AEP has gotten an extension until March 15, 2017. FOCL hopes to have an opportunity to comment on the final draft. Laura Bullard went through FOCL’s requested SMP changes sent to AEP February 1. 25th Anniversary Gala – Scheduled for Sunday, May 7, 2017 from 4-7 at Nesselrod on the New. Events Committee will meet next week to discuss details; they are still planning on dinner and a speaker (Dr. Tal Stanley).
Thank-you letters received by FOCL: one from Toys for Tots; and one with a letter and a donation check from “The Claytor Lake Kids,” a group of children at the lake who donated money from items they made and sold.
Organizational Development: No report.
Clean Up Report: None.
Financial Resources: Bill Cunningham presented the Finance Report for the period ending February 9, 2017. The report was accepted as presented.
Environmental Resources: Cheri Strenz reported for Laura Walters that the Claytor Lake State Park Ambassadors are sponsoring a boat parade on June 10, 2017 (Claytor Lake Festival day) and would like FOCL to help advertise it. The water celery planted by Pulaski County High School for transplanting into the lake is growing.
Donation Report: According to Darryl Sarver donations are down this year 28% compared to this time last year. Jeff Caldwell is trying a different solicitation strategy. January and February are usually slow donation months. Jackson Beamer said he will be soliciting donations from home owners in Claytor Lake Estates and recommends that others canvas their neighborhoods as well for donations.
Events Committee is meeting February 16, 2017 at noon at MK’s.
Executive Director Report: Jeff Caldwell was approached by members of RU’s Geospacial Department about a mapping project that would produce 3-D images of the land and under the water using drones and a submarine. It would show aquatic vegetation and the amount and type of silt on the bottom of the lake. They would like to start next month and plan to do the whole lake. They would like it to be a continuous project for 3-4 years. Their only need would be occasional boat transportation. Jeff hopes to put the images on the FOCL’s website. At Joe Guthrie’s suggestion, Jeff will explore participation by Pulaski County High School. Jeff also brought up President Trump’s Executive Order allowing the dumping of coal waste into rivers and streams. He would like to write a letter expressing FOCL’s concerns. It was decided that we first need to read the order and to check with the New River Conservancy for more information before writing a letter.
Meeting was adjourned.
Present: Cheri Strenz, Bill Cunningham, Jeff Caldwell, Dave Dobyns, John Johnson, Jackson Beamer, Steve Rapp, Larry Killough, Ted Bostic, Dave & Joan Stevenson, Chris Meade, Cecil Doyle, Danny Wilson, Darryl Sarver, Andy McCready, Jim Kelly, Michael Valach, Joe Guthrie, Ward Angle, John Schutte, John Stoner, Spencer & Stephanie Regas, Randy Bandy, Troy Phillips, Arthur Cox, Dana Spraker, Chuck Brown
Minutes for November 10, 2016 Board meeting were approved as written.
Organizational development: Laura Bullard presented Bylaw amendments regarding Board member term limits, President Elect position and committee chair qualifications. Following discussion, the amendments were approved individually as presented.
Clean Up Report: According to Dave Dobyns, clean up has been completed for the season and they are working on burning the wooden debris pile. Total collected for the season was 192.75 roll offs, 48 tires, 410 trash bags, 11 (55) gal barrels, 14 docks, a picnic table, miscellaneous pipes and a set of metal steps. The boat has been pulled and equipment is being winterized. The abutment above Lowman’s Ferry Bridge has been completed and will be ready to go by April. Dave was recognized for his work.
Financial Resources: Bill Cunningham presented the Finance Report for the period ending January 12, 2017. The report was accepted as presented.
Environmental Resources: Christmas for the Fishes will be 9:30 at the State Park on January 18; January 25 is the alternative date. The barge request submitted to the County was denied by the Board of Supervisors. Stabilization is needed along the bank at Lowman’s Ferry Bridge and will be done. A pontoon boat donated by Brian Burke and Bones Harris needs work but will be very useful for habitat work.
Donation Committee: Darryl Sarver reported that 2016 donations were down 38% from 2015. He encouraged everyone to talk to friends and neighbors about donating. 7% of homeowners had been donating; it is now down to 6%. A different strategy will be implemented. A question was raised about whether lake homeowners think Pulaski County is funding FOCL through their taxes. It was agreed there is a need to educate residents about FOCL’s funding sources. Jim Kelly recommended the fact sheet about Claytor Lake as a good source of information.
Events Committee: According to Cheri Strenz, the committee met during the first part of December and is planning a different type of Spring Splash this year with a dinner and speaker. They would like to have all former FOCL presidents at the event. They are planning the event around building the Legacy Fund whose purpose is to sustain FOCL during lean donation times. May 7 is the scheduled date.
Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Review: Cheri provided background about the SMP and its 5-year review. FOCL members have been meeting with APCO and have been sharing concerns about the SMP including Project boundary clarification, facilitation of erosion control, SMP implementation date, steep slope, dock sizes, shoreline stabilization, grandfathering, fees and leases. Laura Bullard presented the Project boundary issue, asking, “Where is the actual Project boundary? Is it still the original boundary purchased by APCO or is it the current 1850 elevation?” She also discussed facilitating erosion control through the SMP to balance protection of resources. During discussion the opinion was expressed that FERC and APCO need to get out of local land management. The SMP implementation date is important for grandfathering. Steep slope restricts dock sizes to 500 square feet; and the designation of steep slope as 2:1 is incorrect. Dave Dobyns pointed out that riprap slope specifications at 2:1 are also incorrect and need to be 1:1. If 1:1 isn’t possible with riprap, then a bulkhead needs to be allowed. It has been requested that approval for retaining walls on Project lands be moved to APCO Exceptions from FERC variance. Approval for an additional 300 square feet for a single family dock may be allowed under APCO Exceptions. During discussion it was expressed that APCO’s ability to require removal of structures can have a detrimental impact on the ability to sell property, thus impacting property values and real estate taxes. The County misses out on revenue and residents’ ability to enjoy the lake is limited. Andy McCready stated the County also needs to continue to press for deeper and more frequent drawdowns to deal with siltation. It was thought that re-permitting of structures would be required if the shoreline is leased from APCO.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.