Tag Archives: EAC budget

December 16, 2015 Meeting Minutes

7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
From the Boot – 110 East Butler Avenue

Compliments of Steve Maakestad

 Members in Attendance:  
Stephen Maakestad, Chair of EAC
Susan Johnsson,
Matt Cooley
Mary-Margaret Monser
(Quorum)

Absent Members:
Charles Charlesworth
(One Vacancy)

Associates and Visitors in Attendance:
Susan Curry
Chris Raines
Next Meeting Date: Note: one-time change from normal third Wednesday
January 27th, 2016 at 7:00PM – 131 Rosemary Avenue, Auditorium

Action Items by Person:

· Steve Maakestad – .Annual Report to Council. Move items from garage to borough building with Susan Johnsson

  • Susan Johnsson – Move items from garage to borough building. Prepare invoice for WVWA membership
  • Mary-Margaret Monser – Organize TREEmendous Party
  • Chris Raines – Add photos from EAC events and monthly minutes to EAC web site
    Post updates to Facebook page. Design flyer and tickets for TREEmendous Party.

Susan Curry – Organize TREEmendous Party. Work on Edgewood Preserve project.

Matt Cooley – Assist with Edgewood Preserve project. Attend TREEmendous party.

Agenda Topics:

  1. Council/Committee Updates: The Edgewood Preserve Project was discussed. Borough Council approved a 20K contribution and will help facilitate the project and eventually take ownership of the protected parcel once sufficient funds are raised. Donations will be refunded if the fundraising falls short.
  2. Remaining 2015 EAC Budget Funds: Will be allocated for the Edgewood Preserve.
  3. Year End Review: Stephen Maakestad will present the year end review to Ambler Borough Council in January. Mary Aversa asked for a mini-campaign on reducing lawn chemicals.
  4. Fort Washington Business Alliance: The EAC joined the Fort Washington Business Alliance, which is a volunteer organization representing business and organizations in the Fort Washington area and neighboring communities. The Alliance meets monthly. The EAC endeavors to send two members to the meeting each month. The next meeting is at DeVry University. (January 21, 2016 at 11:30am)
  5. EAC Membership: Karen Polesir and Erin McKenna are considering joining the EAC in 2016.
  6. Tools in the EAC storage Garage: Steve Maakestad will call Susan Johnsson to arrange a time to move the tools to the borough building.
  7. TREEmendous Party: Details of the party were discussed including volunteers, flyer, tickets and publicity.

Items Postponed Until The Next Meeting:

  • Plant swap project
  • TMDL Phosphorous Update

The meeting was adjourned around 9:00pm.

Next Meeting Date:  January 27th, 2016 at 7:00PM (Usually 3rd Wednesday)

October 21, 2015 Meeting Minutes

October 21, 2015

AMBLER BOROUGH ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISORY COUNCIL

7:00PM to 9:45PM

Members in Attendance:  
Stephen Maakestad, Chair of EAC
Susan Johnsson,
Mary-Margaret Monser
(Quorum)

Absent Members:
Matt Cooley
Charles Charlesworth
(One Vacancy)

Associates and Visitors in Attendance:
Susan Curry
Chris Raines
Raija Suomela
Rachel Rosenfeld
Jill and Christian Sanchez

Action Items by Person:

· Steve Maakestad – .Meet with Mary Aversa. Give presentation to Borough Council. Contact prospective EAC members. Check with Gail about carryover process for unused budget funds.

  • Susan Johnsson – Send application to the Fort Washington Business Alliance. Contact Raija about invoices.
  • Susan Curry – Work on Edgewood Forest Preserve Project.
  • Mary-Margaret Monser – Create Powerpoint and give presentation at Library on November 5th. Contact Linda Hode. Send Chris Raines specs for image needed for emblem.
  • Charles Charlesworth – Coordinate TerraCycle Program to collect specific recyclables at Borough Hall with Sue Garrity of Shady Grove (cereal bags, tape dispensers, pens/markers/mechanical pencils, glue bottles, plastic bottle spray  triggers, cheese wrappers, juice pouches).
  • Chris Raines – Add photos from EAC events and monthly minutes to EAC web site
    Post updates to Facebook page. Send photos to Mary Margaret for November 5th Presentation.
  • Rachel Rosenfeld – Attend November 5th presentation and help to answer audience questions.
  • Raija Suomela – Communicate with park maintenance contractors to begin work in Borough Park.

Agenda Topics:

  1. Council/Committee Updates:

The planning commission gave a presentation describing their role in the county, explaining how they have worked with Ambler borough for 42 years and outlining two proposed conservation ordinances (Riparian Buffer and Steep Slope). Dulcy Flaherty, Eric Jarrell and Lauren VanDyk each presented information Ms. VanDyk has been working on the ordinances with the Ambler Planning Commission for the past several months.

Residents in the vicinity of Rose Valley Creek expressed dissatisfaction with the ordinances. Much of the concern was about the distance of setback from the water’s edge for Zone 1 and Zone 2. In rural areas, the setback is 100 feet for each zone and for urban areas, it is usually 25 feet. The planning commission has agreed to make the setback distance 15 feet for Ambler. There are specific guidelines for Zone 1 and Zone 2. Glenn Kucher is planning to meet individually with residents who are affected by these ordinances.

Joe Bresnan mentioned that the flood ordinance is currently being rewritten.

The TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) for phosphorus was discussed in relation to the water quality of the creek and the ordinances. Mary Aversa stated that the ordinances were only part of the necessary actions that the borough needed to take. Capturing and filtering all of the water runoff before it reaches the creek will be a large and costly project. She also alluded to the improvements that may be needed in the waste water treatment plant.

  1. Health of the Creeks: Some borough residents are blowing their fallen leaves into the creeks. There is a need for education about how to improve the health of the creeks. Stephen will talk to Mary Aversa and Glenn Kucher to learn whether the borough has a brochure about keeping creeks healthy.

A resident on Edgewood cut down several large healthy trees last weekend. Many neighbors are quite upset and someone spray painted swear words on one of the stumps. This tree stump has since been removed.

  1. Edgewood Forest Preserve: Susan Curry made a proposal that a 501c3 organization purchase the woodlands steep slope property on Edgewood Drive and suggested that the EAC and whole community participate in raising the tax-deductible funds to do so. She suggested that the property be transferred with a permanent Conservation Easement to the Borough for on-going maintenance.  Susan has spoken to the Wissahickon Watershed, but the size and current condition of the property does not meet the WVWA’s criterion. Susan plans to speak to the Heritage Conservancy about partnering with the property purchase.
  2. Removal of Invasive Plants in Borough Park: Raija stated that Red Tail would begin removing invasive plants later in the week. She will follow up with them to clarify which plants will be removed and report discussion to the EAC following the meeting. Rachel was concerned that the Knotweed has dried up already and suggested that Red Tail remove other invasive plants.
  3. Mesothelioma Lecture: The lecture was held on September 19th, 2015. The meeting was a success. Diane Blackburn-Zambetti was thorough and clear in presenting many aspects of the disease, prevention and risks as well as types of asbestos and where it can be found. The audience was engaged and interested in the subject. Nineteen people attended. To publicize this event, 1000 flyers were distributed to neighborhoods in Ambler, 12 local churches and many Butler Avenue businesses.
  4. Healthy Wissahickon Film: Chris Raines will work with Lindsay to schedule an EAC showing of the Healthy Wissahickon Film in early winter 2016. Possible locations/events are a church coffeehouse, a senior center, or a Fort Washington Business Alliance luncheon.
  5. Fort Washington Business Alliance: The EAC decided to join the FWBA for 2016. Susan Johnsson will send the application and fee. Our goal is for one EAC member to attend the luncheon each month to discuss ongoing initiatives and enlist support for projects from the group.
  6. Protecting Green Spaces in Ambler: Presentation is scheduled for November 5th at the Wissahickon Library (Ambler Branch). The event begins at 6:30pm with tea and scones. The presentation is scheduled for 7pm. Chris Raines will purchase the refreshments, set up and clean up. Mary-Margaret will speak about the current condition of the creek, the need for environmental ordinances, the Temple Study, and the EAC’s role.
  1. The BoRit Cag Meeting was held on October 7th. Gordon Chase was appointed chair.
  1. EAC Budget was briefly discussed. Approximately $800 is still available.
  2. Rain Gardens: A Rain Garden on the Ambler Borough Property was suggested to be placed in the area near the building’s entrance was discussed. Stephen will discuss this project with the borough manager.Mary Margaret is considering a rain garden on her property.
  3. Hometown News was mentioned briefly. Several EAC articles and photos appeared in the newsletter.
  4. Membership: There are two openings on the EAC. Matt Cooley will change his status from Member to Associate Member. He will send a letter to borough council announcing is change.

 

  1. Meeting with Borough Manager: The need for a meeting with Mary Aversa was discussed. Stephen Maakestad will meet with Mary Aversa to discuss EAC agenda. He will learn what types of projects she would like the EAC to focus on.
  2. December Committee or Council Meeting: Each year the EAC gives a short presentation to borough council. Stephen Maakestad will give this presentation outlining EAC accomplishments for 2015 and goals for 2016.
  3. December Meeting: The Lucky Well is being considered for a dinner meeting in December.

Items Postponed Until The Next Meeting:

  • Plant swap project
  • TMDL Phosphorous Update

The meeting was adjourned around 9:45pm.

Next Meeting Date: November 28, 2015 at 7:00PM – 131 Rosemary Avenue, Auditorium

September 16, 2015 Meeting Minutes

7:00PM to 9:30PM

Members in Attendance:
Susan Johnsson,
Mary-Margaret Monser

(No Quorum)Associates / Visitors in Attendance:
Chris Raines
Raija Suomela
Jill Sanchez

Absent Members:
Stephen Maakestad, Chair of EAC
Matt Cooley
Charles Charlesworth

(Two Vacancies)

Next Meeting Date: 
Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at 7:00PM – 131 Rosemary Avenue, Auditorium

Action Items by Person:

· Steve Maakestad – Help with 2016 EAC Budget, EAC table at Octoberfest, Fall Mini-Campaign, Plant Swap and report about BoRit Cag meeting.

  • Susan Johnsson – Work on the 2016 EAC Budget. Set up a time to move items to EAC storage area. Help with Fall EAC Events.
  • Mary-Margaret Monser – Organize the Fall Mini Campaign about Ordinances, design ordinance poster. Help organize the Plant Swap. Contribute ideas about 2016 EAC Budget.
  • Charles Charlesworth – Coordinate TerraCycle Program to collect specific recyclables at Borough Hall with Sue Garrity of Shady Grove (cereal bags, tape dispensers, pens/markers/mechanical pencils, glue bottles, plastic bottle spray triggers, cheese wrappers, juice pouches). Provide photo and bio to Chris Raines for EAC website. Help with Fall EAC Events.
  • Chris Raines – Add photos from EAC events and monthly minutes to EAC web sitePost updates to Facebook page. Coordinate the Mesothelioma presentation with the Mesothelioma Foundation, Calvary United Methodist Church and Church of the Brethren for Sept. 19 at 7:00 or 7:30 pm. Design flyer for fall mini campaign and coordinate scheduling/publicity with Lois McManus, Ambler Branch Librarian. Help organize the Plant Swap.
  • Rachel Rosenfeld – Help organize the Plant Swap and assist with Fall EAC events.
  • Matt Cooley – Help organize the Plant Swap. Help with Fall mini-campaign, EAC table at Octoberfest. Provide input for 2016 EAC Budget.
  • Raija Suomela– Communicate with park maintenance contractors to clarify proposals, communicate with EAC members about contract, and request that Red Tail begin work this fall. Work with Mary-Margaret on ordinance presentation and poster.
  • Susan Curry – Provide input about 2016 EAC Budget and Fall EAC events.
  • All Members and Associates – help to move tools to new storage closet.

Agenda Topics:

  1. Council/Committee; Planning Commission ordinances and other updates:
  2. Ordinances: Mary Margaret and Susan Johnsson attended August planning commission meeting. The commission continues to discuss the environmental resources ordinances and decided to remove the section about probationary slopes. They were considering changing the probationary slope degree from 15 degrees (which is standard) to 20 or 25 degrees. The planning commission mentioned that they expected it to take at least one year to enact these ordinances.
  3. Proposals for Removal of Invasive Plants in Ambler Borough Park: Dependent upon quorum vote via email, Raija will contact Red Tail to clarify the contract details and cost and have work completed this fall. She will discuss herbicide application and which plants will be removed. She will also contact Mary Aversa to let her know about these EAC plans. .
  4. Next BoRit CAG meeting is Wednesday, October 7th. All are invited to come to Upper Dublin Township Hall at 6:30 pm.
  5. TreeVitalize Grant –. The deadline for TreeVitalize has ended and there were not enough applications to move forward with this program.
  6. Mesothelioma presentation: The Mesothelioma lecture / Coffeehouse will be held at Calvary United Methodist Church on Saturday, September 19th, at 6:45PM. The event was announced on the Facebook Page, EAC web site and in newspapers, and elsewhere. Flyers were distributed to homes and businesses.
  7. Health of the Wissahickon Movie: The EAC continues to seek venues to show WVWA film.
  8. Fall Mini-Campaign – Presentation at the Wissahickon Valley Public Library in Ambler, Race Street: Mary Margaret and Raija will give a presentation about environmental ordinances. Chris contacted Lois McManus and scheduled the presentation at the Library on November 5th. This presentation is a “Tea and Scones” event. Refreshments are served at 6:30pm and the presentation is scheduled for 7pm.
  9. EAC/Main Street storage closet:  Mary-Margaret will move the Rain Garden Tour signs, currently located at her house, to new storage area. Susan Johnsson will schedule a date to move the EAC tools located at her house to the closet. EAC members will help Susan with this move.
  10. Rain Garden: Homeowners who have expressed interest in a rain garden are being contacted to determine if they are ready to move forward with the rain garden installations this fall.
  11. EAC Budget was briefly discussed. Approximately $1,800 is still available. It was noted that approximately $1,000 is available for the fall rain garden program. A suggestion was made to use some of the EAC funds for marketing to mobilize Ambler residents who to install rain gardens.
  12. Trees – The condition of trees located on borough properties was discussed. Mary-Margaret suggested making a catalog of trees in Ambler parks.The tree in Pickering Park that was recently removed was discussed. Before it was removed, two arborists recommended that the tree needed to be taken down. At the council meeting on Tuesday, Mary Aversa stated that two trees would be planted to replace it.

Raija said that we should be aware of tree diseases that might impact our borough. The emerald ash borer is killing Ash trees and that a virus is devastating Pin Oaks and the Hemlock wooly aldegid is killing Hemlocks.

  1. Tour – Montgomery County Recycling Center – Susan Johnnson contacted the recycling center and was told that tours are no longer given.
  2. Octoberfest – The EAC will have a table at the Octoberfest on October 3rd. Volunteers are needed to staff the table, and set it up and take in down. Chris will contact EAC members, associates and volunteers to request help.
  3. Plant Swap – A plant swap event is being organized at a Saturday morning Farmers Market. EAC information will also be provided at that time. The date has not yet been determined.

The meeting was adjourned around 9:00pm.

Items that must be considered before the next meeting:

  • 2016 EAC Budget

Items Postponed Until The Next Meeting:

  • Teracycling program
  • TMDL Phosphorous Update
  • Discuss suggestions given by David Morgan about borough trees

Next Meeting Date:  Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at 7:00PM – 131 Rosemary Avenue, Auditorium