Appeals Board, Tues., Nov. 25, 2008

Appeals Board, Nov. 25, 2008


            The Sedgwick Appeals Board met at the Sedgwick Town Office on Tuesday, November 25 at 6:30 pm.  Present were Board members Tom Schroth, Pam Johnson, Danny Weed, Steve Tobey and Chairman Fred Marston.  Also present were John Allen, Aaron and Mrs Chambers, Karen Dube, Duane Ford, Cliff Goodale. Barbara Grindle, Palmer Little, Tom O’Connor, James Patterson, Jonathan and Mrs Thomas, Phil Urban and Scott Williams.

            The meeting was opened at 6:45 pm by Chairman Marston who turned it over to Mr Goodall, attorney for the appellates.  He passed out copies of the last meeting’s minutes and more additions to the exhibit notebooks.  He then introduced Scott Williams, who had been asked by the appellates to give a water quality report on the Pond and the effect this project would have on the Pond. 

Mr Williams has been monitoring the Pond for about 15 years for the Friends of Walker Pond.  He reported that the Pond is in the top ten percent of ponds in the state for clarity of water.  It is stressed a little more in the summer because of usage.  Many factors determine the quality of the water, including the winter weather and yearly rainfall.  It takes about 2 years for the water to totally flush itself of phosphorus, sediments and pollutants. 

Part of the additional exhibits was the process of rebuilding approximately 1800 feet of existing gravel road.  Mr Williams said that a great deal of this road has eroded over the years and much of the gravel and sediment has washed from the road and entered Walker Pond.  A large sediment area has formed on the shore of the pond proving that much sediment and phosphorus has washed into the pond.  Properly rebuilding this road will greatly reduce this pollution, thus improving the water quality.  They are also planning to discontinue the roads to the cabins and make access by walking trail only.  This will also reduce the sediment runoff.  All areas disturbed by improvements to the cabins will be planted with native vegetation, providing a buffer zone between the land and the water.

There was extensive discussion of a possible vernal pool.  The pool has to be checked during certain times of the spring to ascertain if there are egg masses of certain reptiles (frogs, lizards, etc.) present.  The regulations regarding vernal pools are confusing, therefore whether this is a vernal pool or just a wet spot is to be determined in the spring.  If the appeal is approved, there will be conditions inserted in the permit to cover this problem.  Efforts will be made to avoid the area while construction is going on.  

Mr William’s long term recommendation was that the project continue to be monitored for a period of time to see if the measures taken are adequate.  He has agreed with the Pattens to help with the implementation and maintenance of the measures he recommended and to ensure that they are properly maintained in perpetuity.

The electricity failed just in time for the group to take a break, returning in time for resumption of the final questioning of Mr Williams.  Mr Goodall indicated that his summation would take about an hour, so when the power failed for a second time, the motion to adjourn was made.  The meeting was adjourned at 9:30 pm.

Barbara Grindle,

Assistant to the Selectmen, Town of Sedgwick