Sep 142017

Braintree Conservation Commission

Unapproved Minutes– Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Submitted by Linda Morse, Secretary


Present:  Tom Cooch, Sanders Stephen, Joan Richmond-Hall, Linda Morse, Paul Shriver


  1. No public comment
  2. July minutes approved
  3. Focus area discussions:

Water – Sandy and Linda agreed to do an article on water for Sept. newsletter. Ideas included fish access on the White River. Tom to contact Greg Russ of White River Partnership. Of interest is the Bethel dam and fish passage. Also to contact Brenden Barden of the Randolph Conservation Commission on removal of the dam in Randolph. Mary Russ had submitted an application on culvert improvement on the third branch, but it was not accepted.  An important question for Braintree is what could Town be doing beside culvert replacement – Sandy and Linda to investigate.
Invasive Species  – Tom reported that Select Board postponed decision on use of glyphosate on knotweed. BCC is requested to report to the SB late in 2017 on this approach. Tom will review material on the subject and report to the BCC in Nov. to refine recommendations. It was noted that the VTrans report might be of use. Tom is mapping roadside knotweed. Joan has seen recent reviews on the effects on human health. Oct. or Nov. may be time to make decisions on its use. Tom – review the Xerxes publication on insecticides and will send out electronic link to CBB members.
Trees:  Paul reported on the removal by the power company of a roadside ash tree and suggested further discussion on the idea of a roadside survey of trees, perhaps starting with one small stretch. There was agreement that there is a need for clarification on the process of roadside tree removal. Resources include the VLCT Conflict of Interest Policy. Sandy will talk to Megan O’Toole on this topic.  

Renewable Energy: Joan reported that the draft of the Town Renewable Energy Plan prepared by TROQ has been completed. The SB will be asked for approval of a new planning grant at the Sept. 5 meeting. There will be an Oct. 12 hearing on the new Town plan, including a flood resiliency section.

  1. Bears – Linda reported on talk in Waitsfield, given by the VT Dept of Fish and Wildlife on bears. It was agreed that the BCC will pursue a joint presentation with Randolph and Brookfield in the future. Linda to follow up.
  2. Newsletter – Articles for next issue: Bears – Linda; VT Biofinder Atlas – Tom; Water issues – Sandy; Bike usage in Braintree Mountain, interview with Zack Freeman – Tom
  3. The meeting was adjourned at 8:32pm

Next Conservation Commission meeting:

Wed., September 27, 7pm at Town offices.