WPCA Regular Meeting Minutes
10 May 2016
Present: Regular Members- Chairman Richard Prendergast, Vice Chair Donna Bednar, Treasurer Doug Wilkinson, Ernest Lorda, Andrea Lombard, Dimitri Tolchinski, Sal Cancelliere, Robert McCarthy, Frank Chan; Alternate Joe Carpentino.
First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder was in the audience.
Approximately 7 members of the public were also in attendance.
Absent: Andrea Lombard, Alternate Steve Cinami
Call to Order
Chairman Richard Prendergast called the meeting to order at 7:34pm.
He noted the excused absence of one member and appointed alternate Joe Carpentino as a voting member for the meeting.
Approval of the Minutes – April 12, 2016
No corrections. Motion made by Doug Wilkinson, seconded by Frank Chan, to approve the minutes of 12 April 2016. Motion passed.
Confirmation that First Selectman sent time line document to DEEP
Chairman Prendergast confirmed that the time line discussed at the last WPCA meeting was reviewed by WPCA Attorney Lord and the First Selectwoman, and submitted to the DEEP. Although the State has not yet officially responded, he received verbal confirmation from DEEP through Carlos Esquerra and supervisor, George Hicks.
The chairman and WPCA Treasurer Doug Wilkinson attended a recent meeting of the CT Association of WPCAs. Speakers included DEEP’s George Hicks on Clean Water funding and Woodard & Curran’s Jay Sheehan on public outreach efforts in Enfield. Treasurer Wilkinson found Jay Sheehan’s presentation very helpful and has requested a copy which he’ll share with WPCA members.
Mr. Wilkinson suggested the WPCA host a table at the Midsummer Festival to distribute information about the wastewater management project.
Vice Chairman Donna Bednar said the WPCA website has been updated and new categories (Letters; News Clippings) have been added. She asked members to review the website and make recommendations about how to organize the new categories. She also asked that members weigh in on the FAQs: should all versions be available on the website, or just the most recent one?
She distributed printed copies of the WPCA and Health Dept pages; the Wastewater Management project page, and the Conservation Commission page as an example of other ways to present information on the website. She will send an email reminder to members.
Discussions with Attorney, Woodard & Curran, and Town Engineer Dave Prickett
The chairman discussed the letter asserting compliance with the DEEP order with Attorney Lord, and finalizing the wastewater management plan with Woodard & Curran. W&C is already approved for funding to perform additional testing. The chairman suggested that using W&C or a subcontractor of W&C would make the most sense.
He has also had discussions with consulting engineer Dave Prickett and believes Prickett should be the WPCA’s representative at a State workshop establishing protocols for the additional testing.
Budget Update and Expenses
Treasurer Wilkinson distributed a budget document to members.
He said there are ample funds remaining for the balance of the year. Some funds will have to be transferred, possibly from the advertising line, to cover Clerk expenses through the rest of the year
New invoices acceptance
Two legal invoices have been received: $2700 in January, and $1590 current for a total of $4290. The invoices will be approved and submitted for payment.
Waste Water Facilities Plan
Scope of work development to finalize waste water facilities plan discussion
Rob McCarthy, Andrea Lombard and Steve Cinami worked on a draft scope of work. Chairman Prendergast summarized the scope as consisting of two main tasks: coordinating meetings and updating/finalizing the wastewater management plan. Members questioned if the scope should include such details as the size of the wastewater pipe, the location of the pump station, and which areas are covered by the Town plan. Jay Sheehan has proposed leaving the areas covered by the private beaches listed in the plan with a notation explaining what the Town is responsible for.
The chair suggested a plan of action: he will share the draft scope, possibly through Google docs, so that members can edit and add detail; he will submit the edited document to Woodard & Curran for review at the next WPCA meeting. He requested a motion to finalize the scope in June.
More extensive time line development of major actions for DEEP
Chairman Prendergast, Treasurer Wilkinson, and Dimitri Tolchinski volunteered to develop a more detailed timeline, establishing milestones for the project. The updated timeline will be presented to the DEEP to demonstrate the progress being made on the wastewater project.
Additional waste water testing plan discussion
Chairman Prendergast would like Engineer Prickett to represent the WPCA at a state workshop about additional testing at Hawks Nest. Ernest Lorda, Sale Cancelliere, Donna Bednar, and Joe Carpentino would also like to participate in the workshop.
The chair will ask Dave Prickett to coordinate possible dates with the State. He will also ask him to provide precedents from other towns for recommended testing protocols. Rob McCarthy suggested reaching out to Old Saybrook for information on their testing protocols.
Members discussed whether a Hawks Nest representative (Sandy Garvin was suggested) should also be invited to participate in the workshop. First Selectwoman Reemsnyder was recognized and pointed out that the workshop would be considered a public meeting and therefore open to attendance by non-participants. Members agreed that a final document detailing proposed testing protocols will be made available for public comment, but a representative of Hawks Nest will not be invited to actively participate in the workshop.
Schedule a public session Q&A
Decisions about informational sessions will be finalized at the next meeting. Members suggested scheduling 2 public sessions, in June/early July and August, possibly at the Sound View Community Center.
Sal Cancelliere suggested contacting the Sound View Association in advance to request questions from residents about the project to be addressed.
Doug Wilkinson will request the public outreach presentation from Jay Sheehan and share with members. He volunteered to staff an information table at the Midsummer Festival.
Schedule a meeting with the Private Beach Associations' WPCAs
Chairman Prendergast will draft an agenda for a joint meeting with the private beach WPCAs, and will ask for volunteers from the WPCA to attend the session. Dimitri Tolchinski suggested meeting at the Sound View Community Center.
New monthly date for the WPCA meetings
Due to conflicts with meeting space availability on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, the WPCA was asked to consider changing its monthly meeting day. The chairman suggested the 4th Tuesday of the month as a possibility. He will email members and request a motion at the next meeting if members agree to change the day.
Sandy Garvin, Hawks Nest, reiterated her suggestion that other variables, including soils and depth to groundwater, be considered as part of the additional testing at Hawks Nest. She also asked who would provide oversight if test wells will be placed on private property. She believes it is important for Hawks Nest Beach to be part of the ongoing process.
Laura Parent, Center Beach Avenue, asked if any WPCA members believe the end result of the additional Hawks Nest testing may not be sewers.
Chairman Prendergast agreed that testing for other variables at Hawks Nest may make sense. He said the additional testing gives the WPCA time, a chance to re-evaluate options, and the possibility of using new technologies to solve any problems found.
Joe Carpentino commented that the WPCA cannot entertain the idea of sewers at Hawks Nest until the testing is done. The WPCA is being overly cautious and he believes that is in everyone’s best interests.
Dimitri Tolchinski said that new technologies currently exist but they are cost-prohibitive. He suggested that Hawks Nest residents may decide they want sewers in the next decade or two.
Donna Bednar pointed out that the WPCA will not make a decision based on additional testing: experts in the field will decide. The WPCA is relying on scientists to provide an unbiased decision.
Sal Cancelliere suggested that the Town Public Works department be consulted regarding test well location, because of potential issues with catch basins in Hawks Nest.
Motion was made by Doug Wilkinson, seconded by Ernest Lorda to adjourn at 9:07pm.
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