2010-01-14 Ambler Environmental EAC Minutes

MINUTES of Ambler EAC MEETING – January 14, 2010, 6:45 pm Boro Hall

Present: Candace Kanaplue, Sigi Koko, Susan Curry, Susan Johnsson, David Morgan
Unexcused absence: Skip Kershner
Quorum was present

ACTION PLANNING:
1. EAC web site pages –www.AmblerEAC.org Sigi has finished the bios page; the minutes and home pages are live.
ACTION: David to send photo.
ACTION: SusanC to send amended August minutes to remove mention of sending a letter to developer or property owner and forward to Sigi to send on to Daniel.
ACTION: Sigi to post the Accomplishments page; and send the Current Projects page to EAC members with a request that we each write a paragraph about our own projects.
ACTION: SusanC to invite Mary Aversa and Mary Maxion to review what is already there.

2. Ambler Green Pledge — The Ambler Main Street board adopted the Green Pledge.
MOTION: It was moved, seconded, and unanimously approved for the EAC to adopt the Green Pledge.
ACTION: SusanC. to send the Green Pledge by email to all EAC members.
ACTION: SusanC. to propose to the Parks & Rec. Committee that the Council adopt the Green Pledge.

3. Plastic Bag Free Ambler–SusanC reported that we have about 60 bags to sell. Wissahickon Middle School requested a fifth design –SusanC ordered 25. Sigi reminded us that we agreed that if someone wanted to buy another design, that buyer needs to buy all 25. We will try to sell the 11 extra bags through our own sales efforts rather than post the extra design on the EAC web page. We agreed to approach selected business in town to ask them to sell the bags expecting them to pre-purchase the bags at $4.50 and sell them at $5.50
ACTION: SusanC will send all members an updated order form, along with the survey for businesses.
ACTION: Candace will pick up about 20 bags and approach Decks and Laneys Kids. David will pick up about 20 bags and approach Denney Electric and CVS. (after thought: Twisters?)
ACTION: Candace and SusanJ will vend bags at the showing of Tapped at Ambler Theater on Feb. 9. SusanC needs to arrange for the EAC as a sponsor.

4. Bike routes and racks- Sigi prepared a map that showed 18 feasible locations for a 2-bike bike rack. The group selected four locations to propose to the Parks & rec. Committee, with several back-ups if one location is not desired. EAC will pay the cost of the racks @ ~$60. Asking businesses to sponsor a bike rack with their name on the rack was tabled.
ACTION: SusanC: copy Sigi’s map of Butler + Main Streets; present idea to Parks & Rec Committee

5. EAC Budget 2010: –$1,200 was approved in the borough budget. We reviewed and agreed on how we would cut back 50% from our request.
ACTION: SusanC will draw up the new budget and circulate before next meeting for approval.

6. Borough Park Riparian Buffer Project –Planting date of April 10 — help is needed. Susan C shared a colorful flier inviting neighbors to a focus group meeting on Feb. 20 to launch the “Friends of Boro Park” and get feedback on two or more scenarios of how the park might look and where features might be placed. The landscape designer, Nancy Minich, wants to have a workshop to educate and distribute rain barrels to selected houses that are contributing to stormwater erosion along a tributary to Rose Valley Creek. EAC can write a WREN grant to support the project.
ACTION: SusanC will walk the ~300 flyers around to the houses on both sides of the streets of Hendricks, Ridge, Belmont, Tennis and nearby cul-de-sacs.
ACTION: SusanC will write a WREN Grant for rain barrels due March 19?. SusanJ will coordinate the workshop after June.

7. Vacant EAC seat – Candace’s husband met a landscaper on Forest Ave while campaigning. There is a notice on our EAC website. We did not work well to get signatures during Oktoberfest. Mary Aversa will place notice in the paper.
ACTION: Candace will check if he will join.

8. Council meetings- EAC members agreed:

Jan. 19 – SusanC.
Feb 2 – SusanC
Feb. 16 – SusanC
Mar. 2 –SusanJ
Mar. 16 – Candace
Apr. 6 — Sigi
April 20 — SusanJ

9. Composting for Ambler – Gene McGonagle of the Ambler Flower Shop initiated a request for help in composting his flower debris. Sigi presented 3 ideas: municipal wide, homeowner, sharing with Upper Dublin. We agreed that the borough’s official option for yard wastes 20 miles away and with uncertain fees was inadequate. We could also organize composting workshops with bins through Penn State. SusanC mentioned a new business that uses 3 cu yd tubs that is looking for about ¼ acre locally to recycle restaurant organic waste.
ACTION: Sigi will email a proposal to EAC members
ACTION: Decisions for future agendas: 1) Do we want to approach Upper Dublin to determine their interest in collaborating on municipal composting, and if so, who will contact them and what they will ask. 2) Do we want to approach Penn State about a composting workshop in Ambler (who will contact them).

10. Green Building incentives – Following an idea collected at one of the PEC annual conferences – Doylestown gives permit discounts to developers for various green aspects in their design. Sigi asked us if we wanted to focus on education or developing incentives to promote green building standards in redevelopment plans. It was clear that Sigi would have to spearhead this initiative.
ACTION: Sigi will focus on education and prepare something for our February meeting. (Sigi will miss the March meeting unless it is later in the month)
ACTION: SusanC will approach Ron Myers to see what he sees could be likely in the incentives area. If he has any good ideas, Susan will bring them to Mary Aversa, and if she likes one of them, Susan will bring it to the Parks & Recreation (P&R) committee.

11. Permanent street and park recycling containers – The first 5 Clearstream event recycling stands have disappeared. The Borough really needs permanent street recycling containers. Mary Aversa wants to purchase new bigger homeowner recycling bins, and was open to buying street containers. The EAC will purchase a second set of ClearStream containers as an interim measure @$300.
ACTION: SusanC will discuss with Jim Wack how to secure the containers better so they don’t get stolen or blow away, then ask AMS to split the price of the containers, then order a second set.

12. UPDATES/REPORTS:
• Council reorganization
• Judy Baigis retiring – SC read letter from Judy: bowing out of EAC participation
• Joe Bresnan response letter – Susan C will revise per EAC discussion
• Ordinances – Floodplains, Wetlands—Susan C seeking a meeting with P&R Committee
• Solar Panels on Garage – Proposal was not granted
• BoRit Asbestos CAG report – Remedial sampling to discover all toxic materials – public meeting in 5 -6 months?

ON HOLD
• Homeowner stormwater management
• Downtown Tree Management Policy
• Jt. EACs of Wissahickon – Susan C is working with Upper Dublin to adopt the same ordinances as are being proposed to Ambler
• Bare Root Trees – there are more trees available for $30. Need sites to be determined.
• Green Committee
• Green Map progress–Skip
• Green roofs of Ambler – Sigi + SC- email Whitpain proposal

NEXT MEETING: Tentatively scheduled for Feb. 11.
Sigi will send an email to ask if Monday, Tuesday or Thursday is better for all. We want to include Skip.