Meeting on April 2, 2015
The meeting of the Friends of the Pemi – Livermore Falls Chapter was held on April 2, 2015 at noon in the RMI offices. A light lunch was served and it appears that this is a good meeting time for the group as everyone has to eat. An agenda was distributed in advance of the meeting with several topics to discuss as we come closer to the new summer season. All follow up comments and questions from the February 12 meeting are covered in the discussion below.
Larry Spencer reported for the environmental committee. A cleanup day is planned as our first second Saturday event on May 9, 2015. It will cover both sides of the river if it is safe to access the Campton side. After the cleanup, Plymouth Rotary will host a burger lunch using the new grills to reward the workers. Also, at 10 am our next Friends meeting will be at the same location where we will hold summer greeter training for all volunteers to be present at the Falls during weekends. Please put this on your calendars and, if you have not signed up for volunteer greeter dates, please do so as soon as possible. Larry and Steve Rand have been meeting with a student who is developing information about the Pemi at the Falls that we will be able to tie into our website. This will be finished by the end of the school year and Larry and Steve will report back to the group.
Tink Taylor distributed an updated timeline of Livermore Falls which will be distributed to the group and used for summer volunteer greeter information. He is still working with various governments to get access to Army Corps of Engineers study data on the Pemi and Falls. We have been approached by public access television to do an interview about the Friends and Rotary work on the river. Walter, Ken and Patrick Hummel will join the interview and we will announce when it will air. Separately, Tink will do an additional interview which will focus specifically on the Area around the Falls. This should be very interesting. We should also note that the Holderness Historical Society has volunteered to be the repository for any hard copy information, maps, pictures, reports, etc., that we dig up in our efforts. The cultural resource consultant report engaged by Ben Wilson has been completed (first draft) and we attempted to distribute to all the Friends. The file, with many pictures, was too large for many of your email systems. If you did not receive it and would like to review, please send a note to Ken Evans and we will somehow arrange for hard copies.
Ken Evans encouraged all Friends who have not signed up to go to signup genius and agree to volunteer as greeters for summer visitors. We still have weekends that are not covered so please be generous with your time. This work is extremely important to our understanding of the usage of this new State park and the information we gather will be invaluable to the State in their staffing and planning for future improvements. Again, we meet on May 9 at 10am on the Holderness Beach to do greeter training for all involved so that you will feel comfortable in the role. This is about education and information gathering. We are not responsible for policing the rules.
Our Second Saturday program/event is shaping up nicely. We will have a separate program on the second Saturday of each month from May through September at 10 am on the Holderness Beach. Look for a separate announcement/attachment to get the subjects to be demonstrated, discussed and presented. We want to get the right folks to the park and provide them with the perspective that the Friends have gained during the last two years about the important natural asset this place can be. Your presence at these events is encouraged and will be appreciated.
Walter reported on website development. It is very nearly ready for populating with content. Each committee was asked to provide content to Kathy Kearns who will review with the communications committee for consistency of presentation and formatting and then provide to our website designer/developer for input to the site. By the time we begin greeting visitors, we will be able to direct them to the site for further information about the Pemi and the Falls. Thanks to the communication committee for meeting with Walter’s daughter to kick this off.
Walter and Ken had an introductory meeting with Patrick to begin discussions on a memorandum of understanding between the Friends and DRED. We all agreed that this is important to accomplish because of the significance of our efforts and the need for additional significant impact in the future. Patrick received our initial thoughts and will work to proceed through the State channels. The Plymouth Rotary Club has agreed to continue to act as fiscal agent and to be the contracting party with the State while doing business as Friends of the Pemi. This will be the smoothest way to move forward. The only requirement is that any activity conducted under the umbrella of the Friends group must be coordinated through the Rotary, presently Walter Johnson and Ken Evans.
Kevin Donovan spoke about DRED activities. We will definitely have an attendant at the Holderness side of Livermore Falls. Specific times and days are still being determined and may change as Kevin becomes more knowledgeable about usage at the park. Walter encouraged Kevin the reach out to Chief Patridge in Holderness to gain Jake’s knowledge about the Park. The Friends will coordinate with Patrick and Kevin about our dates and times serving as volunteer greeters. We will also provide Patrick with our volunteer scripts (especially in Campton) so that they are aware of our communications with visitors. At the meeting, there was no indication about the SEC review and approval of the Groton Wind Farm fine and settlement. Although, we have subsequently learned that all except one party have withdrawn their complaints about the settlement and that complete resolution should happen at the next meeting in early June. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.
Director Bryce and Kevin are still looking for funding for the proposed new parking lot in Holderness. 2015 funds will not be available because they need to be spent by end of June. However, they are still working on the 2016 budget. Kevin then presented a third version of the parking lot design and, with a minor tweak to the turnaround area, all present seemed comfortable with the concept. Thanks to the State for listening to the Friends and neighbors and addressing our concerns to the best of their ability.
Kevin also is looking around his system for a small shed to be used for tools and items for the attendant. If anyone knows of a sound bob house-like structure available (preferably by donation) please let Ken or Walter know.
Also, subsequent to the meeting on April 23, the Plymouth community, organized by PSU and Granite State United Way, hosted a Share fair at the Plymouth elementary school. Over 60 different groups of mostly not for profit organizations were represented in an attempt to learn more about what each of us does in our surrounding communities. Friends of the Pemi and Plymouth Rotary were well represented and we signed up five new friends in the process.
Once again, we will meet on May 9 on the Holderness Beach for greeter training. Representatives from the State are more than welcome and serving as a volunteer greeter will be a great way to get a better understanding of the potential of the park. We need this to be well attended by Friends and Rotary.
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned