Zoom link for the CWT meeting on May 17th

The Monday May 17, 2021 meeting of the CWT Executive Board will be held via Zoom.

The meeting begins at 6:15 PM EDT.

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Executive Board Meeting – March 15, 2021

Location:  Zoom

Present:  Ric Coombe, Greg Vurck, Peter Friedel, David Kukle, Bud Gladstone and Tom Hilson.

Others:  Jason Merwin, Jeff Baker, Nick Carbone, Tim Cox, Aaron Bennet, Michelle Yost and Kelly Mariotti.  Jim Sofranko-Town of Olive Supervisor

1. Call to Order:  Ric Coombe called the meeting to order at 6:12.

2. February 15, 2021 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve minutes by Bud Gladstone.  Second by Peter Friedel.  Motion carried.

3. Stakeholders Meeting:  NAS held a summary meeting on March 25th.  The Septic Program was talked about.  It was recommended that there be an expansion, but that was in the Kensico Basin.  Meetings will continue and DEP will also be having focus group meetings especially regarding the Land Acquisition Program. 

Another issue that was discussed was how to rollout the SAP program.  There are issues with DEC regarding the towns to buy-in the SAP program.  Wednesday, March 17th, there will be a conference call between Delaware County, Jeff Baker, Kevin Young and Allyson Phillips to develop a strategy on how to deal with DEC on this issue.

Nick Carbone stated that there has been no new development in the Town of Middleton in the last 50 years except the new CWC/DEP building.

4. Ashokan Pumped Storage Project:  The Supervisor from the Town of Olive, Jim Sofranko is asking the CWT Board for their support to oppose a project that was submitted to FERC.  A company from California has submitted a proposal to FERC for a high elevation reservoir.  There are 3 reservoir sites for this proposal.  One will be chosen for the project. There has been no outreach from FERC to Ulster County.  The high elevation reservoir project would be huge.  The tunnels would be 40 to 50 feet in diameter and buried 100s of feet underground.  At the end of the tunnels, there would be five turbines running which would use huge amount of power.  Ric motioned Jeff to write a response letter opposing the High Elevation Reservoir project.  Moved by David Kukle.  Second by Tom Hilson.  Motioned carried.  Note:  Peter Friedel clarifies that the project will affect his land and house.   Jeff stated the comment period ends April 12th.  He will have the response letter in by April 9th.

5. Reporting back to our member Towns:  Last week Ric sat in on the Town of Rochester Board meeting via zoom.  Rochester had some questions as to why they should stay with CWT.  Ric explain what CWT is and what CWT does and how CWT can help the Counties, Towns and Villages.  Rochester decided to stay with CWT.

Ric Coombe reinstated that communication is the key.  Need to do more outreach to the towns and villages on watershed issues so that the towns and villages know what is going on.

6. 2021 Dues Notice:  Kelly Mariotti stated that the dues letters were mailed out Monday, March 15th.

7. Reports
a. FAD deliverables:  No report.
b. Streamside Acquisition: 
c. Flood Commission Reports:  Arron reported that the only thing that is active at this time is the Town of Shokan.
d. CWC report:  Annual meeting April 6 via zoom.
e. Below the Reservoirs:  No report.

8. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  There is $491.21 in the checking account and $98,983.35 in the savings account.  Tom Hilson motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by Peter Friedel. 

Greg Vurckio motioned to except the warrant for-
The Storeroom $50.00
Delaware County Admin services $722.33
$1,443.00 for legal fees and
The Mountain Eagle in the amount of $12.18
Making the total warrant for $2,227.51. 
Second by Bill Federice.  Motion carried.

9. Other:  Once again, Ric reached out to Bud stating that if he needs any help with WAC, please feel free to reach out to CWT.  Bud was very appreciative of that.

10. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Bud Gladstone.  Second by Greg Vurckio.  Meeting adjourned at 7:04.

Executive Board Meeting – Feb 15, 2021

Location:  Zoom
Present:  Ric Coombe, Greg Vurckio, Bill Federice, Scott Grey, Larry Reilly, Peter Friedel, David Kukle and Steve Walker.

Others:  Jason Merwin, Jeff Baker, Nick Carbone, Tim Cox and Kelly Mariotti.

  1. Call to Order:  Ric Coombe called the meeting to order at 6:15.

  2. January 18, 2021 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve minutes by Greg Vurckio.  Second by Larry Reilly.  Motion carried.

  3. Stakeholders Meeting:  There has been three Stakeholders meetings to date.  Land Acquisition & Community Vitality, Stream Program and WAC.
    Ric felt there seemed to be a lot of common ground on the Stream Program.  There is an interest in purchasing smaller pieces.  There are some smaller disagreements in the Stream Program, but Ric thinks they can work through it.  The meeting ended with assignments.  Jeff was assigned to work on zoning and planning.

    Jeff reported that the city thinks there is sufficient amount of coordination.  On the other hand, Jeff stated there is a lack of coordination with all parties involved.  Dave Warne called Jeff regarding his statement during the Stakeholders meeting.  Dave believes there is coordination/cooperation.  Jeff disagrees.  Jeff suggested a meeting with the Catskill Center, Green County Soil and Water, the City and Towns to discuss the management of the program.  Let’s get cooperation with all parties involved.  Another example of lack of cooperation is the City involvement in Invasive Species.  Once again, need to get all parties involved to work together on this issue.

    Nick had a comment on Forestry Easements.  If the intent of the Easement Program is to preserve and promote forest land in the watershed, then improved incentives are required to ensure that pre-commercial forestry is conducted.  Many landowners can’t do this work themselves, incentives must make it attractive to private contractors.

    Ric stated that CWT needs to support this program that is under WAC.  Jeff stated that CWT and WAC do not have a good history together.  Ric understands that but at this time, WAC could really use a helping hand.  Ric will reach out to Bud Gladstone.

    Jason Merwin stated that CWC doesn’t agree with everything in the NAS report as well.  For example, the Septic System Program.   Jason is requesting CWT and other Stakeholders support before the Stakeholders meeting that is on Thursday, February 25th.  The topics include Stormwater, Waste Water and most importantly the Septic System Program.  The NAS recommends that CWC do up to 1,500 septic system replacements per year.  That isn’t a realistic number.  CWC does around 300 per year.

    Over the past year, the City was unable to honor some of the contracts and invoices.  This has put the program at a pause.  CWC needs 100% assurance from the City that they will reimburse for the program to move forward.

    Right now, there are 317 people are enrolled in the program.  It cost around $29,000 to replace a system.  For January 2021, CWC has $7,200,000.  That comes to around $24,000 per person.  We are short right from the start.   Jason stated that he would like to start out at $14,400,000. Get the 317 septic’s done this summer and start enrolling people for the following summer.   Steve Walker brought up the question, “how do you know if it is residential or an Air BB (commercial)?”  Commercial properties receive 60% reimbursement from CWC.  Residential is 100% reimbursed.  The owner needs to live on the property to receive the 100% reimbursement.

    Steve Walker moved to motion that CWT supports the efforts of CWC to frontload the Septic Program and directs Jeff Baker to advocate that position and in all negotiations. Second by Peter Friedel.  Motion carried.

  4. Delaware County will be setting up their own zoom link to use for CWT.  If need be, CWT can use Ric’s zoom account or Jeff’s zoom account.

  5. 2021 Dues Notice:  Jeff Baker will work on the letter.

  6. Web Page – Carl Stuendel:  The CWT Board is very thankful that Carl is willing to post the minutes and the zoom links.

  7. Reports
    a. FAD deliverables:  No report.
    b. Streamside Acquisition:  Nothing new to report.
    c. Flood Commission Reports:  Kelly emailed Delaware County’s report to all members.
    d. CWC report:  Revised Hamlet letters will be going out tomorrow.  Annual meeting April via zoom.
    e. Below the Reservoirs:  No report

  8. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  Kelly forgot the account balances.  She will email that to the Board tomorrow.  There is $1,000.06 in the checking account and $98,968.16 in the savings account. 
    Greg Vurckio motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by Bill Federice.  Motion carried via email.  

    Bill Federice motioned to except the warrant for
    The Storeroom $50.00; Delaware County Admin services $550.35; and $1,924.00 for legal fees –
    making the total warrant for $2,524.35. 
    Second by Steve Walker.  Motion carried.

  9. Other:    No report.

  10. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Greg Vurckio.  Second by Steve Walker.  Meeting adjourned at 7:30.

Executive Board Meeting – Jan 18, 2021

Location:  Zoom
Present:  Ric Coombe, Greg Vurckio, Bill Federice, Scott Grey, Larry Reilly, Tom Hilson and Steve Walker.
Others:  Jason Merwin, Jeff Baker, Nick Carbone, Tim Cox and Michelle Yost.

  1. Call to Order:  Ric Coombe called the meeting to order at 6:15.
  2. December 21, 2020 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve minutes by Bill Federice.  Second by Larry Reilly.  Motion carried.
  3. Stakeholders Meeting:  Ric Coombe reported that with 70 some people on the call, he doesn’t know how things will get done. 
    A smaller group needs to be formed to stay focused on the issues.  Jeff suggested to the group to get your list of concerns together now and bring to the group so that the group can start working on a strategy.
    Jeff Baker shared information from DOH.  A tight schedule of meetings for the release of the draft FAD by February 2022. (Please see attached document from DOH)  Jeff stated that the negotiations are conducted in smaller groups.  Some of the issues that we need to focus on are Conservation Easements, Recreation Land Use and Land Acquisition Program to name a few.  Regarding the Conservation Easements, Ric asked, “what is the breakdown with the easements and the landowners and DEP.  “Who’s fault is it?”  Jeff stated that the landowners don’t really know what they are getting in to.  The landowners really need to use  lawyers.
    Ric had one more comment to make.  He wanted to disclose that he is enrolling  750 acres into a WAC Conservation Easement.  Nick Carbone’s comment on that, “we shouldn’t follow the NAS recommendations when it comes to Conservation Easements.”  NAS’s recommendation states, “retiring eased agricultural land from production.”  Ric and Jeff feel that this is an odd comment from NAS.  They will investigate further.
    Jason Merwin stated that CWC doesn’t agree with everything in the NAS report as well.  For example, the Septic System Program. The NAS recommendation is to use Aerobic Systems.  CWC gave NAS a report done in 2009 that this type of septic doesn’t work very well.
    Jason also reported that they have a large contract with DEP regarding the Septic Replacement Program.  They will be able to replace around 300 septics per year, but some revisions need to be made to the contract with DEP to insure that 300 septics can be replaced.  NAS thinks that CWC should be doing around 500 to a 1,500 per year which is impossible.  CWC will be making a case against that.
    Ric commented that in the past, CWC and CWT didn’t always see eye to eye.  Ric believes that CWC and CWT need to be on the same page regarding the FAD negotiations.  We would have a better chance of getting things accomplished if we are as one.
  4. Delaware County will be setting up their own zoom link to use for CWT.  If need be, CWT can use Ric’s zoom account or Jeff’s zoom account.
  5. 2021 Dues Notice:  Need to talk to Kelly.
  6. Web Page – Carl Stuendel:  Jeff and Ric will talk to Carl to see what he might want as payment (if any) and bring back to the group next month.
  7. Reports
    a. FAD deliverables:  No report.
    b. Streamside Acquisition:  Nothing new to report.
    c. Flood Commission Reports:  No report.
    d. CWC report:  Working on revised Hamlet letters.  Should be going out this week.
    e. Below the Reservoirs:  No report
  8. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  Nick read off the account balances. 
    There is $424.18 in the checking account and
    $101,525.62 in the savings account. 
    Greg Vurckio motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by Bill Federice.  Motion carried.  

    Greg Vurckio motioned to except the warrant for
    The Storeroom $50.00 
    Delaware County Admin services $375.51 and
    Sullivan County Democrat $79.36 for meeting announcement
    making the total warrant for $504.87. 
    Second by Bill Federice.  Motion carried.
  9. Other:    No report.
  10. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Greg Vurckio.  Second by Bill Federice.  Meeting adjourned at 7:15.

Upcoming Feb 2021 Meeting

The February 15, 2021 meeting of the CWT Executive Board meeting will be held via Zoom.
The meeting begins at 6:00 PM EST.

Join Zoom Meeting:
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Meeting ID: 828 1228 5486
Passcode: 100478

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Meeting ID: 828 1228 5486
Passcode: 100478
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kbVKd3Bsc1

Executive Board Meeting – Dec 21, 2020

December 21, 2020 CWT Executive Committee Meeting Minutes
Location:  Zoom

Present:  Ric Coombe, Bud Gladstone, David Kukle, Greg Vurckio, Bill Federice, Scott Grey and Larry Reilly.
Others:  Kelly Mariotti, Jason Merwin, Jeff Baker, Nick Carbone, Tim Cox, Larry Underwood, Aaron Bennett, Bruce Dolph and Anne Seefeldt (student).

1. Call to Order:  Ric called the meeting to order at 6:18.

2. November 21, 2020 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve minutes by Bud Gladstone.  Second by Bill Federice.  Motion carried.

3. Stakeholders Meeting:  Jeff Baker reported on the December 8th State Holder meeting with Dave Warne regarding the NAS report.  Ric Coombe and Jeff made comments regarding the SAP program and the LAP.  Delaware County made similar comments as well.  Dave stated this is a process of moving forward for the next FAD and amending the Water Supply Permit.  There will be 4 meetings starting in January through February.  The meetings will cover Land Acquisition, Stream Management, WAC and Ag issues and finally Waste Water and Storm Water.

Ric Coombe stated that this was his first State Holders meeting that he attended.  He feels with all the people involved, it will be difficult to achieve any goals.  CWT needs to stay focused on the things that matter and really lay the ground work for what we want this to look like 10 to 20 years from now.

Ric stated that his Board received the Hamlet letter from CWC.  He was surprised that many of the Board members were confused by it.  It was agreed by the CWT members that an outreach needs to be done to the town boards as to what the CWT does.  Give the board members some history of CWT and explain the LFA .  Tim Cox stated that he has been getting responses from Town Board members regarding the Hamlet letters, asking him to send out what the towns did back in 2017 for LFAs.

Jeff Baker shared with the CWT member’s new language that he and Hilary wrote regarding subdivisions.

4. Reports
a. FAD deliverables:  No report
i. Streamside Acquisition:  No report

b. Flood Commission Reports:  Larry Underwood will send out Delaware County’s report.  Kelly will send the report to the CWT group.

c. CWC report:  Jason Merwin reported that the Hamlet letters have been sent out to the Towns.  LFA’s letters also has been sent out to the communities to re-educate or educate the communities as to what is a LFA.

Larry Underwood reported that Shelly Johnson and Graydon Dutcher will be doing a presentation regarding LFAs at the January Board of Supervisor’s meeting.

d. Below the Reservoirs:  No report

5. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  Kelly read off the account balances. 
There is
$429.01 in the checking account and
$101,508.38 in the savings account. 
Larry Reilly motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by Bud Gladstone.  Motion carried.  

Greg Vurckio motioned to except the warrant for
The Storeroom $50.00
Delaware County Admin services $375.51 and
Jeff Baker for $1,572.00. 
Making the total warrant for $1,997.51. 
Second by Larry Reilly.  Motion carried.

6. Other:  Below the Reservoirs:  Nick Carbone reported on the MMI Flood report that was commissioned by OGS.  The report stated what many have understood is the tributaries of the East and West branch are steep and unstable and that the main stem can’t transport the sediment.  Also, that when reservoirs are not at peak they provide some flood attenuation. 

Tim Cox and Aaron Bennett reported that DEP is getting a permit on the releases from the Shokan reservoir down to the lower Esopus.  There is a video conference on February 4th regarding the draft Environment Impact Statement.

7. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Greg Vurckio.  Second by Bill Federice.  Meeting adjourned at 7:15.

Executive Board Meeting – Nov 16, 2020

Location:  Zoom

Present:  Ric Coombe, Bud Gladstone, David Kukle, Greg Vurckio, Bill Federice, Peter Friedel, Steve Walker, Scott Grey and Tom “Almighty” Hilson.

Others:  Kelly Mariotti, Jason Merwin, Jeff Baker, Nick Carbone, Michelle Yost and Bruce Dolph.

1. Call to Order:  Ric called the meeting to order at 6:30.

2. August 17, 2020 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve August minutes by Bud.  Second by David.  Motion carried.

3. Stake Holders Meeting:  Jeff reported that a meeting is coming up in December to go over the National Academies Study of the NYC Watershed Protection Programs.  Today’s meeting was on the SAP.  This hasn’t been discussed with the state holders in over a year.  This meeting got everybody back on the same page.  A subcommittee will be formed to look at the legal issues which Jeff will be part of.  For example, subdivision law and 3rd party holding.  Ric asked Jeff for clarification regarding the 3rd party holding.  Jeff replied that the town or county would be the third party holding title.  As for the subdivision, out of a 10 acre lot by a stream, DEP would by the acre that runs along the stream.  The remaining 9 acres would be developable.

4. Reports
a. FAD deliverables:  No report
i. Streamside Acquisition:  No report

b. Flood Commission Reports:  Kelly sent out the reports for Ulster and Delaware Counties.

c. CWC report:  Tim reported that Article 78 has been submitted with the Delaware County Courts.  CWC owns the property and is entitled for tax exemption on the property.  Also, a letter has been drafted to be sent out to all the Supervisors that 5 years are up and they can review their options regarding the LAP.  Ric brought to attention that the county boards need to be educated on the CWT and what the CWT can offer.  Many towns will have questions regarding the LAP.  Lastly, Tim reported that the old CWC building in Margaretville has been sold.  The new owners will be setting up an environmental test lab.

d. Below the Reservoirs:  No report

5. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  Ric read off the account balances. 
There is $3,347.33 in the checking account and
$99,991.27 in the savings account. 
David motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by Tom.  Motion carried.
 
(Jeff Baker emailed his invoice today to Ric and Kelly for the CWT to approve for payment.) 
Jeff Baker’s invoice for the amount of $2,753.50; 
The Storeroom $50.00;
Delaware County Admin services $32.55. 
Ric called roll call.  All said yes.  Motion carried.

6.  Other:
Request by the Town of Hunter.  The Town of Hunter is requesting the CWT to look into the legality of the NYCDEP purchasing 2 parcels as an infrastructure project, explain the legal premise under which NYCDEP is operating and assist with its resolution.  A motion was made by Steve.  Second by Tom to assist the Town of Hunter.  Ric took a roll call:  All said yes.  Motion carried.

Ric asked the group if we should change how we schedule are monthly meetings.  The group agreed to leave as is.

It was also decided that December’s meeting will be done via zoom.

7. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Greg.  Second by Steve.  Meeting adjourned at 7:30.



Executive Board Meeting – Aug 17, 2020

Location: CWC, Arkville

Present:  Ric Coombe, Bud Gladstone, David Kukle, Mike McCrary, Greg Vurckio, Shane Moshier and Larry Reilly.  Bill Federice and Peter Friedel joined via Zoom.

Others:  Kelly Mariotti, Jason Merwin and Jeff Baker.  Michelle Yost, Aaron Bennett joined via Zoom.

1. Call to Order:  Jeff Baker called the meeting to order at 6:17.

2. New CWT Chairman:  Mark Tuthill is no longer Chairman of the CWT Board. He is now on the CWC Board.  Jeff Baker asked for nominations for a new Chairman.  David Kukle nominated Ric Coombe.  Jeff Baker asked for a motion.  Bud Gladstone motioned for Ric to be our new Chairman.  Second by Greg Vurckio.  All in favor.  Motioned carried.  Next Mike McCrary nominated David Kukle to be Vice Chairmen.  Jeff asked for a motion.  Ric motioned for David to be our new Vice Chairman.  Second by Larry Reilly.  All in favor.  Motioned carried.  Ric thanked everyone for electing him as Chairman.  He stated that we need to focus on policy and we need to all work together as partners.

3. July 20, 2019 Minutes Approval:  Motion to approve July’s minutes by Mike.  Second by Bub.  Motion carried.

4. Reports:

a. FAD deliverables: i. Streamside Acquisition: No report

b. Flood Commission Reports:  Kelly stated that there are hand-outs on the table for Delaware and Ulster County.

c. CWC report:  Jason Merwin reported on annual meeting that took place August 4th.  Mark Tuthill is now on the CWC Board.  Mike Triolo has retired and Tina Mole is now the new Board President.

d. Below the Reservoirs:  No report

5. Warrants(s) and Treasurer’s Report:  Bud Gladstone read off the account balances.  There is $3,156.77 in the checking account and $96,942.36 in the savings account.  Greg motioned to accept the Treasurer’s report.  Second by David.  Motion carried.  Motion to pay warrant by Bud.  Second by Mike.  Motion carried.

6. Other:  National Academy of Sciences report.    Jeff Baker gave a summary of the recently released NASEM study on NYC’s watershed protection strategy.  Jeff explained that the report is a strong vindication of the Coalition’s position over the last several years.  Namely, NASEM agreed that the Land Acquisition Program should be dramatically scaled back, should focus on riparian buffers and provide for swaps of recently acquired properties that can be used for sustainable development with other properties that may provide a higher water quality protection benefit.
Jeff also explained that among NASEM’s recommendations were expanding the septic replacement program and the forestry program as well as new initiatives for WAC.  Under the current FAD, DEP is required to present a new 10-year land acquisition strategy by 5/31/22 after considering the NASEM report and consulting with watershed partners.  DEP’s application for a renewal of the water supply permit is due a month later on 6/30/22. This means that negotiations over the new WSP will likely start this Fall or Winter.  This provides an opportunity for the watershed communities to push for a significant reorientation of DEP’s watershed protection program using the NASEM report as the scientific support for the Coalition’s positions.
The Executive Committee discussed the NASEM report and agreed that it is very beneficial and provides an important opportunity.  The Executive Committee also expressed their appreciation that the NASEM panel approached its task with obvious impartiality and expertise and provided a very useful tool for the future management of the watershed.

7. Adjourn:  Motion to adjourn meeting by Greg.  Second by Larry.  Meeting adjourned at 7:11.