CAYUGA LAKE WATERSHED MANAGEMENT PLAN
INTERMUNICIPAL ORGANIZATION (IO) MEETING
4/26/00, 7:00 – 9:00 P.M.
LEDYARD TOWN HALL

MINUTES


Attendees:
David Morehouse (Town of Ledyard)-R* Chuck Howell (Town of Scipio)-R*
Sylvia Hurlbut (Town of Ledyard)-RA* Eli Shockey (Vill. of Union Springs)*
Kathy Bertuch (CNY RPDB) Bruce Johnson (Village of Freeville)
Dooley Kiefer (Vill. of Cayuga Heights)* Carolyn Grigorov (Town of Ithaca)*
Linda Wagenet (Cornell Center for the Envir.)
Deb Grantham (Town of Dryden)-R
Jerry Codner (Town of Lansing)* Jose Lozano (City of Ithaca)
Kate Hackett (Tompkins County Planning)
Frank Moore (Village of Lansing)*
George Kennedy (Town of Ulysses)* Diana Redford (Vill. of Freeville)
Bud Shattuck Karen Edelstein

R = designated representative for municipality
RA= designated alternate rep. for municipality
*Municipality has signed and submitted the “Call For Cooperation” (intermunicipal agreement)

I. Welcome, Introductions, Approval of Minutes: Meeting began at 7:00 P.M. S. Hurlbut
welcomed everyone. Introductions were made of all attendees. Acceptance of minutes from 3/22/00 meeting moved by D. Morehouse. D. Kiefer seconded with corrections. All voted in favor. Motion carried.

II. Municipal Cash Contributions: S. Hurlbut stated that watershed municipalities have
contributed $7,300 toward meeting the second year cash match. She requested that remaining municipalities clarify their intentions to contribute, how much and when. Vouchers were distributed to representatives upon request.

III. Financial Statements for Years 1 and 2: Discrepancies in the financial statements for years 1 and 2 resulted in a postponement of this discussion. K. Bertuch will provide updated financial statements at the May IO meeting.

III. Solicitation for Interim Recommendations: Discussion was had regarding the
appropriateness of including a proposed project’s relative rank among all projects being considered for endorsement by the IO. G. Kennedy suggested that if two competing projects are seeking funding from the same source it is appropriate to include ranks as they will help funding agencies follow the IO’s project support preferences. It was suggested that proposals be ranked with some consideration of how they relate to the top watershed priorities. J. Lozano stated that in the interest of fairness, it is important to define the criteria for ranking projects prior to looking at proposals. L. Wagenet stated that the Technical Committee dealt with the weighting of criteria issue and decided that the for the purposes of ranking project applications the Technical Committee will look strictly at the criteria as listed in the matrix. The IO will have an opportunity to add qualitative criteria when they conduct their own review prior to refuting or endorsing the Technical Committee’s recommendations in June. It was stressed that the IO is not obligated to accept the recommended rankings of the Technical Committee. J. Lozano restated the need to have firm criteria in place to avoid the appearance of bias. J. Codner suggested that weights be incorporated into the criteria earlier in next year’s ranking process. S. Hurlbut stated that the issues of weighting the criteria be placed as an agenda item on the Jan. 2001 IO meeting so as to allow for adequate time to resolve this issue prior to the Technical Committee’s ranking session. An invitation was extended to all IO members to join the Technical Committee’s ranking session. A sign up sheet was passed and members were asked to indicate if they wished to receive completed applications for review and notification of the ranking session date/location.

IV. IO Website: J. Codner reported on development of the IO website
(www.cayugawatershed.org). The full Watershed Characterization, meeting minutes, agendas, watershed and lake facts, the IO member list and other information is now available. It was also noted that municipalities could submit proposed Bond Act projects to the IO Technical Committee for review by completing an on-line application available at the website. In the future, IO meeting minutes will appear as a dated draft within 10 days of IO meetings and will be updated upon approval at the following meeting (approval date also noted). This should eliminate confusion regarding the status of IO meeting minutes.

IV. Desired State of the Watershed: IO Representatives were requested to present a list of
watershed issues as an agenda item for discussion and prioritization at their next town/village board meeting. Municipal boards should identify up to 15 issues they view as priorities within their boundaries. IO Representatives will bring these priority lists back to the full IO during the June meeting. The IO will review individual lists for the purpose of developing a single list of 10 to 15 priority issues. The Technical Committee will use this list to recommend management strategies to be incorporated into the watershed management plan. The strategy recommendations will be presented to the IO during the late summer/early fall. IO Representatives will be asked to bring feedback from their municipal boards regarding the recommendations to the full IO for discussion and consensus building. The IO supported strategies will be incorporated into the final management plan. When implemented, these strategies will lead to the “desired state” of the watershed. Much discussion followed regarding the number of issues currently identified for consideration, duplication of issues on the list, the number of issues being requested from municipal boards, the wisdom of attempting to rank issues, the interplay of cause and effect and possible problems associated with lumping issues into broad categories such as “land Use.” K. Bertuch stated that the list is intended to get municipal boards and IO representatives thinking about the issues and tasks that lie ahead. The broad categories identified on the issue list and the resulting duplication of individual issues under more than one category was intentional. The list is a tool to begin discussion. Issues not identified on the list are not to be excluded from consideration. Municipalities are encouraged to identify all issues relevant to them whether or not they appear on the list. L. Wagenet expressed concern that “lumping issues” will cause problems. She stated that municipalities must be more specific when identifying concerns than simply identifying “land use” as a priority issue. She also questioned whether 15 issues are too many to realistically deal with and suggested a more appropriate number might be 5. D. Morehouse agreed. S. Hurlbut suggested that municipalities identify as many or as few issues as they see fit. She stated that the ultimate list of priority issues identified by the full IO will act as ammunition for securing funding from DOS and DEC as these agencies are more likely to fund projects that will advance solutions to priority problems identified in the management plan. K. Bertuch stated that it is important for IO representatives to take an active role as two-way “conduits of information” between the IO and their represented municipalities. S. Hurlbut suggested that IO Representatives make regular mini-presentations at municipal board meetings to keep board members educated and involved in the Cayuga Lake Watershed Management Plan project. K. Bertuch stated that the Technical Committee would be taking up the subject of issue prioritization at their May 3 meeting and would report back to the IO at the May 24th meeting on the. In response to a conflict on May 24th that would impact IO meeting attendance, it was agreed that the IO meeting should be changed to TUESDAY, MAY 23, 2000. S. Hurlbut reminded IO Representatives to contact their municipal clerk’s office to get on the next Board meeting agenda and to provide copies of the issue list for distribution at the meeting. The issue list will also be posted on the IO website.

V. Lakefront Residence Septic Resolution: S. Hurlbut noted that a feature common to many
watershed management plans is the recommendation that all waterfront (lakefront and tributary) residences with septic systems be inspected annually. She opened discussion regarding the possibility of passing a resolution to endorse the same requirement within the Cayuga Lake Watershed. She stated that a large number of residences are on septic and that the procedure is not overly burdensome. C. Grigorov stated that the test must be completed by a certified inspector and involves the use of dye packets. S. Hurlbut noted that homeowners are responsible for the cost of the test that can range from $25 to $105. D. Grantham suggested that the IO develop a statement that would include its recommendation for individual towns to implement the requirement, why it is important, how similar requirements have been enacted in other places and the associated cost. Representatives could use the statement to help persuade their municipalities to enact the septic test requirement. L. Wagenet stated that the county is responsible for enforcement only after a system has failed the test. At that point, the county Dept. of Health gets involved. S. Hurlbut stated that the Cayuga County DOH would not track property testing unless the recommendation is part of the management plan. L. Wagenet stated that testing is not the only issue – maintenance must also be addressed. She also warned that if annual testing requires annual pumping, the resulting costs would be prohibitive and unnecessary. She cautioned that all terminology must be clear with regards to holding tanks vs. septic tanks. When the issue of who the resolution would be sent to it was stated that if passed, it would be an internal resolution simply stating that septic testing should be part of the management plan.

VII. IO Bylaws: D. Kiefer stated that a working draft of the proposed bylaws has been completed but is not ready to be presented as some topics require additional input from the group. These include a description of the IO at the end of the 3-year DOS grant and identification of the IO's fiscal year. J. Lozano asked if the uncertainty related to the end of the 3-year DOS grant was structural or fiscal. D. Kiefer stated that current staff might not be associated with the IO after the end of the 3 years. The IO will need more than a volunteer staff to be effective. D. Morehouse stated that both staff and funding agency might be different at the end of the 3-year project. S. Hurlbut suggested that a list of bylaw issues be posted on the website for members to review and comment on. D. Morehouse noted that the Agriculture Committee is listed as a special committee in the draft bylaws but should be considered a “regular” committee. D. Kiefer stated that “special” does not mean ad-hoc or temporary. The Bylaw Committee will meet to clarify and sign-off on the draft before making it available to the full IO.

VI. Committee Reports: No Technical or E/O/PP Committee Reports. S. Hurlbut reported
that the April 12 Agriculture Committee meeting was cancelled. S. Hurlbut reported that the Grant and Finance Committee met one time. Sen. Nozzolio has indicated that he will provide a $15K. It is expected that the formal announcement will be made when the NYS budget is approved. Wells College has pledged to provide a dinner for up to 400 people this October. They have also offered to sponsor a cheese and wine reception when the plan is complete. The October dinner will be used as an opportunity to get municipalities to take ownership of the management plan. Invited guests will include all municipal board members, town supervisors and IO Representatives. Spouses will also be invited. A presentation of where we are in the process will be made prior to dinner and guests will then be broken into small groups for discussion of water quality issues in the watershed. Wells College has offered to cover the mailing of invitations as well.

Seneca Meadows Landfill has committed to providing engineering services for up to 12 Roadbank/Streambank projects to be completed under the 3rd year of the project. The cost of these services will count toward cash match. A $66K contribution was solicited from the AEC Cayuga (power company operating Milikin Station). The local request has been forwarded to the corporate level for a decision. Because the company does not normally grant such large amounts, any contribution is expected to be much smaller than requested. The City of Ithaca has pledged $15K as in-kind services. D. Morehouse is pursuing a funding request with ADM.

IX. Set Date and Agenda for Next IO Meeting : The next IO meeting will be held at 7:00 P.M. on TUESDAY 5/23/00 in Ithaca. Refreshments will start at 6:30. At that meeting the Bylaw Committee will review their proposed product; draft resolution regarding septic testing will be presented; status of municipal cash contributions will be updated; the Technical Committee will introduce process and procedure development for issues prioritization; and the Lake Steward will be discussed.

X. Additional Discussion: D. Morehouse provided an update on progress being made by the

CLWN in their search to fill the Watershed Steward position. Of the 54 applications received, 10 telephone interviews were conducted. Final selection will be based on the result of 3 to 5 in person interviews that will take place around May 6. S. Hurlbut stated that the CLWN has made a matching fund commitment. A meeting with Bill Shaw will be arranged to set up the logistics.


B. Shattuck stated that the Waterfront Revitalization group is discussing and moving forward on issues of interest to the IO such as boat noise.

The meeting adjourned at 8:55 PM.


SUMMARY OF VOTES


ITEM
OUTCOME
Vote to accept the 3/26/00 IO meeting minutes with corrections.
Carried (unanimously)



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Cayuga Lake Watershed Intermunicipal Organization.
Call 315-364-5707 or email info@cayugawatershed.org

CLW IO 2000