Cayuga Lake Watershed Intermunicipal Organization Cayuga Lake Watershed Intermunicipal Organization
Minutes: May 22, 2002
Seneca Falls Town Hall
Voting IO Representatives:
Chuck Howell, Scipio
Barbara Stewart, Interlaken
Deb Grantham, Town of Dryden
Sylvia Hurlbut, Ledyard
Doug McEver, Town of Lansing
Lynn Leopold, Village of Lansing
Jerry Codner, Town of Lansing (alternate)
Don Weir, Tompkins County EMC
Michele Wunderlich, Cayuga County Planning Department


Unanimously approved April, 2002 minutes with the following changes:

George Kennedy, Ulysses, was present, making up the quorum.

Discussion on the draft 303(d) listing of the southern end of Cayuga Lake should be noted. IO members were divided on whether a 303(d) listing was a positive action for the sake of the watershed (will it bring in more funding and generate data?) or a top-down action that will nullify local action. Deb Grantham was asked to review the various positions submitted to her and to submit comments to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) on behalf of the IO.

Committee minutes:

Jerry Codner would like the Technical Advisory Committee meeting dates and minutes for the Web site.

Finance report was distributed.

Jet skis:

Don Weir thinks that the emissions regulations will go into effect in 2003, not 2006 - 2008. This should be confirmed. Once emissions regulations are in effect, our concentration could be on safety and noise issues. The IO might propose a model ordina nce that includes a 5 miles per hour zone for up 500 or 1,000 feet from shore (common standards nationwide, according to Don Weir).

Further draft 303(d) listing discussion:

Deb Grantham reported that comments were due just a couple of days after the previous IO meeting so she didn't have time to submit comments. The opinion that our comments will be taken into account was stated and the IO agreed that we should submit co mments, even though the deadline has passed. Further discussion would happen tonight and then the topic would be referred to the Technical Advisory Committee for further discussion.

Liz Moran's comments to the DEC were used as a starting point for the discussion. Several points were made during the discussion:

1. The lake IS impaired so must be listed by law.

2. Specifically, Liz Moran's letter cited phosphorus levels that disagreed with the DEC data. These data discrepancies should be resolved.

3. Liz Moran also seemed to be disputing the source of phosphorus (P) and of sediment cited in the draft 303(d) listing. The IO agreed that the sources of P should include nonpoint sources as well as municipal sources.

4. There was agreement that the order of priority of sediment versus P might be disputable. The TAC should address this topic.

5. The Ithaca Area Wastewater Treatment Plant hasn't made any changes to date so it is fallacious to state that changes in the plant and system will make a difference in P, as Liz Moran included in her comments.

6. We need the data that would be collected by the DEC in the TMDL development process, so 303(d) listing would help us.

7. The comments on the draft 303(d) list should point to the data that the IO has used in the Characterization and the Restoration and Protection Plan.

8. The comments on the draft 303(d) list should make a strong statement about including the IO and other watershed organizations and residents in any decisions and investigations in the watershed. A 303(d) listing should not remove watershed managemen t from local control and involvement.

Watershed rules and regulations:

Sylvia Hurlbut brought up the option of watershed rules and regulations, saying that county health departments, county planning departments, soil and water conservation districts, and county water quality coordinating committees need to start talking about what ought to go into watershed rules and regulations for the Cayuga Lake Watershed.

It was agreed that we should start by getting samples of rules and regulations from other watersheds, then look back at our RPP for priorities. The rules and regulations should be targeted to RPP-identified issues and should be concise.

In the interim, we can review our model ordinances (in the RPP, including a stormwater ordinance) and begin recommending that municipalities adopt them, including providing information about why they are important.

The legislative committee of the IO was identified as the best committee to work on this task. The current members are Steve Adams, Freeville; Dooley Kiefer, Cayuga Heights; John Sipos; and Doug McEver, Town of Lansing. That committee was to be conven ed by John Sipos some months ago but hasn't been. Deb Grantham will work on contacting John to convene the committee.

Cayuga County septage spreading:

In the northern end of the county, septage spreading is supported. In the southern end of the county, people are against spreading. Michele Wunderlick reported that Cayuga County is talking about enforcing current or new DEC rules and regulations, for example, not planting food crops for 18 months after spreading).

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CLW IO 2002