In order to ensure that all of our members and friends have a good sense of what the LSCCF is doing, we have decided to publish a short summary of our monthly Board of Directors meetings. These get-togethers normally take place at the Wells Town Hall on the third Saturday each month and are open to the public. Given the constraints imposed by the coronavirus, however, we are currently meeting on-line. Please check our website, lakematters.com, for any scheduling changes.
The key issues discussed this month included the format and timing of this year’s Annual Meeting; recruitment of new board members and strengthening our committee structure; the 2020-2021 budget; next steps in securing permits from the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) for the installation of an aeration system throughout Little Lake, followed by the introduction of enzymes to accelerate the reduction of muck in Little Lake; expanding the dialogue with the Lake St. Catherine Association; plans for this year’s harvesting program; and, implementation of an experimental dredging project along a portion of the northwest side of Little Lake.
Right now, it is not possible to confirm how we will conduct our Annual Meeting. Even if the State authorizes a gathering of that size and we can find a location willing to host it, there will be directors and members who will be unwilling to risk attending. So, we are exploring holding the meeting in a combined in-person/virtual format, no earlier than mid-July.
An organization is only as strong as its membership’s involvement. We are looking for new blood to join the Board. That would allow us to strengthen our committee structure and add more energy and talent to tackle what is a growing workload as we continue working to restore Little Lake and preserve the entire Lake St. Catherine lake system. Please contact Michael Marine (202-997-2796) or any board member, if you are interested.
The coming year (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021) is clearly going to present significant financial challenges. As we build the budget to be presented at the Annual Meeting, we are wrestling with uncertainties about the impact of the coronavirus on membership and donations; a cut in funding from the State for harvesting; and, the cost of the proposed dredging project, just to name a few problems.
The struggle to convince the DEC to grant our aeration and bioaugmentation permit applications continues. Despite the disruptions caused by the virus, we are pulling together the extensive data and support documentation demanded by the DEC, and hope to be able to submit it soon. Our proposal will be to turn on the existing aeration system this season, expand aeration throughout Little Lake next year, and introduce enzymes in 2022.
Thanks to an initiative by LSCCF member Jeff Somple, we have reestablished a dialogue with the LSCA leadership. They have expressed interest gaining the LSCCF’s support for the use of herbcides in a restricted area of Little Lake and we want the LSCA to voice support (or, at a minimum, mute their opposition) to our aeration/bioaugmentation plan. The two sides are exploring the possibility of organizing a meeting (probably on line) for a discussion led by scientists of the pros and cons of the aeration approach.
We intend to start this year’s harvesting program in mid-June, with the orange harvester being operated by Green Mountain Services. If we can afford the required repairs (a big if), we will run the blue harvester as well, under a volunteer program.
Thanks to the hard work of new Director Rich Young, we have ironed out all of the key details for the dredging project. The DEC has signed off, and provided we can raise the funds needed to carry out the work, we intend to start the project in September. If this works out as planned, we believe the DEC will allow us to carry out similar shoreline improvements elsewhere around Little Lake in future seasons.
We hope that you find this information helpful. Please direct questions or comments to Michael Marine at firstname.lastname@example.org.