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05/23/2019 Conservation Commission Minutes



MAY 23, 2019

6:00 PM Bethlehem Public Library


PRESENT: Lindsay Webb, Chair; Margaret Gale, Treasurer; Cheryl Jensen; Marilyn Johnson, Alternate.

REGRETS: Nicole McGrath, Jeanne Robillard.  ABSENT: Linda Moore, Select Board Liaison.

GUESTS: Chris Jensen


Lindsay Webb opened the meeting at 6:00 PM. Alternate Marilyn Johnson was appointed as a full voting member for the meeting.

MINUTES: Reviewed the Minutes of March 28, 2019;  acceptance was moved by Cheryl and seconded by Marilyn;  all in favor.

Cheryl suggested that the Chair submit “NOTES” of the April 25 meeting for the record, since that evening’s discussion had taken place without a quorum.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Margaret reported that the balance in the Town Appropriation Account is $495.00;  the Savings Account had a balance of $13, 447.72, as of 3/31/2019.

Due to circumstances beyond their control, the BES Field Trip did not take place as planned. The BCC check to the School, in the amount of $500.00, was not cashed and will be returned to BCC.  There being no practical alternative for a BES Field Trip this Spring, Cheryl moved that the funds be returned to the BCC Town Account;  Lindsay seconded.  The vote was in the affirmative and Margaret will instruct the Town Treasurer to credit the funds to the BCC account.

Cheryl presented receipts from her expenditures related to the Roadside Cleanup on May 4; total amount due the Jensens is $125.09.  Motion to reimburse was made by Lindsay and seconded by Marilyn.  All voted in the affirmative, except Cheryl, who abstained.  Margaret will request a check from the Town Treasurer, Libby Staples.


Lindsay reported that there had been no Wetlands or AOT permit application that required our consideration or comment.

DES (NH Department of Environmental Services) sent notice that they have received an Application for an Air Permit from NCES (North Country Environmental Services). Further action may follow.


At the request of the BCC, Tom Howe of the Forest Society came to Bethlehem on May 14 to make a public presentation regarding the possible acquisition of 242 acres along the Ammonoosuc River near the Bethlehem/Carroll town line.  Owned by Mr. and Mrs. Richard Gould, the property has outstanding recreational value, both in and along the river.  SPNHF would insist on Public Access, and the land would remain on the Tax Rolls at some level.

Members of the BCC were unanimously enthusiastic about having the property conserved; we were not unanimous about whether–and how much–the BCC should contribute monetarily toward the project;  or about what consideration, if any, should be given to the Goulds for their property.  Eventually, Cheryl motioned and Marilyn seconded to send a letter of support—in the strongest possible terms—to SPNHF.  All voted in the affirmative.  Lindsay will write the letter.


Although the turnout had seemed light, we had 36 volunteers, including truck drivers, and collected about 63 bags, approximately one dumpster full. We were missing several of our BCC members and the White Mountain School did not send a contingent.  (They have a new person in the position this year). Cheryl suggested that we do some email reminders next year.  Also, we will have the benefit of the Town of Bethlehem Newsletter that Chris Jensen has been producing.


There was further discussion of making an application for a GRUNMAN FUND grant to support a survey in the Town Forest. Lindsay reported that she and Chris Jensen had worked on the application and it was all ready to submit.  Cheryl moved and Marilyn seconded that the application be submitted for a $4,000.00 grant to hire a surveyor to complete a boundary survey in the Town Forest.  All voted in favor.

There followed discussion of the procedure, should the grant be awarded, for having RFP’s invited from area surveyors.


Margaret has checked with Tanya Tellman, who was BCC Chair for many years, about attending the June meeting to share in the ”old files” discussion, and that will not be possible for her so we will postpone that until another time.


Margaret suggested that the BCC consider taking over the old community garden beds—between the Gazebo and the tennis courts, and plant some pollinator-friendly flowering perennial species. Lindsay volunteered to help.  Chris offered to check with the SB to be sure that would be o.k.

The next meeting was scheduled for June 27 at the library. Cheryl moved to adjourn at 7:13 p.m.;

Marilyn seconded. All voted in favor.

Respectfully submitted, Margaret Gale, ad hoc secretary