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Inlands Wetlands Commission Minutes 09/25/2012
SEPTEMBER 25, 2012

PRESENT WERE:  Robb Linde, Janet Bechtel, Dave McCulloch, Skip DiCamillo and Sabine O’Donnell.


Skip DiCamillo made a motion to approve the minutes.  Sabine O’Donnell seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.


This item was Postponed until the next meeting.   


Ann Brown explained that two gentlemen from the Point O Woods Cemetery Association who are considering doing some work requested some guidance from the commission.  She noted there is not a formal application at this time but would like to have an informal discussion with the commission.

Linde stated as chair he wanted to make sure that the commission does not continually add agenda items at the last minutes.  He suggested a procedure be established for this purpose.  He further stated he spoke with Ann Brown this morning and noted he could see the value in doing it.

Bechtel stated as being prior chair of the commission she felt when applications come in at the last minute it can be problematic, but felt an informal discussion was not a problem.  

She further stated she also felt some of the decision would have to be relevant to how much is presently on the agenda as well as input from the staff.   

Brown stated if the commission had received an application up until Monday at 4:00 p.m. the commission would have to accept it statutorily.  

Linde asked if it had to be on the agenda to accept.  Brown stated it was automatically accepted.

Skip DiCamillo made a motion to add the discussion of the Point O Woods Cemetery Association to the agenda.  Dave McCulloch seconded the motion.  The motion passed unanimously.



Michael Girard, Miami Beach Association, Roads Chairman presented the proposal to the commission.  The commission reviewed the grade map included with the application.  He stated the area is very flat with little pitch.  He stated it is very difficult to get water out of the area so they are proposing to pipe the area.  He noted there are check valves within the system.  

O’Donnell asked Mr. Girard what his expertise was in this area.  Mr. Girard noted he has been in construction for forty years.

He noted due to the homes and the varying grades they are built at it has become a very challenging project to eliminate the ponding and flooding in the area.  

Linde asked if an engineer had reviewed the proposal.  Girard stated that Jones Engineering had worked on the project.  Linde asked if the proposal would work in the winter when there is frost on the ground.  Girard said when it is water it probably won’t freeze with the stone and if it does it will not be any worse than it is now.  He further noted there is not as much rain in February which really causes the problem.  

He noted that hay bales and silt fencing would be placed on the end.  O’Donnell asked what the distance was between the silt fencing and the wetlands.  Girard stated the project is located entirely within the regulated area.  

Brown asked if the wetlands are marked and is the pond area at the end of the road.  Girard stated that was correct.  Brown asked if a Soil Scientist has marked wetland soils in the roadway.  Girard stated he has not.  

Linde stated the drawing appears to be a drawing on top of an old drawing and therefore he requested a drawing properly signed by an engineer who has taken responsibility for the proposal.  Girard stated it was a private job and all the neighbors have agreed to present this proposal to try to resolve the situation.  He further stated the association has spent quite a bit of money to get all the grades and many hours on the phone with Jones Engineering.  He stated if the proposal doesn’t work, there will be no change as to where the water is presently flowing.   Linde stated the plan looks like it was designed by Jones Engineering but it almost sounds like it’s a plan that was designed by others and that Jones may have collaborated in it but may or may not be supportive of it.  He further stated if it is not a Jones' plan than we need to know.   If it is Jones' plan then we need him to sign off on it.  Girard stated the plan is designed to do what is being done.  He stated they discussed the water flow and established the grades.  He stated that Jones cannot sign off on the plan at this point.  He stated Jones had a lot of input but he is not the author of the plan.  

Linde stated the commission had an  nearly identical situation several months ago at Rogers lake and the water treatment was properly taken care of  by an engineer and he wants to be sure that the pipe taking water from one point to another point will be properly treated and taken care of.    

Bechtel stated our town engineer will need to review the plan and if he feels they are legitimate grades that were provided by Jones Engineering it will not be a problem.  Bechtel further stated the commission just needs the town engineer to say that the pipe in the road that will deliver water to there will hopefully work and if not it will not make the present situation worse.  Linde stated we will also ask our engineer if any sediment controls should be required.

The commission agreed to set a Site Walk for Saturday, September 29th at 8:45 a.m.

Brown asked for clarification that if Tom Metcalf reviews the plan and feels it is satisfactory does the commission still want Mr. Jones to author the plan.  Bechtel stated she felt she was comfortable if Metcalf feels it is adequate.  Linde further stated the commission will ask Tom Metcalf if he feels this proposal requires an engineered plan.  
Pa2-17 Geoffrey and Kona Rich – Dredge Pond – 9 Tantummaheag, Applicant: Scott Brooks

Scott Brooks addressed the commission on the proposal for the remediation of the dredging of a pond.  He stated the property owner currently has a lot of flooding issues .  Brown noted that the pond was dredged previously 10 years ago.  

Brooks stated the average depth of the pond is going to be around five feet and approximately 3 feet around the edges.  Brooks stated the proposal is to clean out the pond but noted it will not effect the elevation of the pond water or the outlet flow.  He stated the mud would be deposited onto the banks to dry out for a week or so and then spread back into the existing bank and then back blade everything and sprinkle with grass seed.  He stated he would like to dig a trench about 8 feet deep so when the sediment does come into the pond it can readily be captured and removed.

O’Donnell asked if the pond needed to be drained to remove the material.  Brooks stated no.  He also stated the pond would be dug with an extended boom excavator which will reach right across the pond.  

Linde asked what the topography was around the pond.   Brooks stated it is currently lawn right up to the wetland.  DiCamillo asked if there was any natural growth around the pond.  Brooks stated currently there was really no buffer around the lawn.  Linde asked the commission to evaluate the site during the walk and to assess whether a vegetative buffer would be required.  Brooks also stated he also thought this pond was a fire well.   Linde noted if it is a firewell the applicant needs to meet with the Fire Chief to determine if it is indeed a firewell and If it is, it must be consistent with what they would like to have for fire apparatus in the pond.   

O’Donnell asked if the proposal changed the perimeter of the pond to possibly eliminate flooding.  Brooks stated the pond would remain at the same footprint.  

The commission agreed to set a Site Walk for Saturday, September 29th at 9:30 a.m.  Linde asked the commission to consider when they walked the site whether a buffer would be appropriate around the pond.


hristina Clayton, President of the Old Lyme Land Trust explained the proposal and noted they are working in cooperation with Riverview, LLC.   She noted the proposed activity consists of repairing a portion of Riverview Drive.  She noted part of the area to be improved is under the jurisdiction of the commission.

She noted Riverview Drive was created to get access from Neck Road to five houses that were developed in this area.  She stated in 2004 the Old Lyme Land Trust was given this large piece of property and with it came Riverview Drive.  She stated when the preserve was opened in 2004 the existing paved road had a little turn out at the bend of the road and the Riverview Drive residences state that it was actually created so that cars coming in opposite directions could pass because of the narrow road.  She also noted that people also began parking in the little turnout area to enter the preserve.  

Clayton stated they asked paving contractors about the issue and their recommendation was to take the little area which is approximately 690 ft. and pave that surface too.  She further noted that there is conservation restriction on this area that states if the parking area is to be improved it must be constructed with permeable, natural materials.  

O’Donnell asked if the widening would be away from the vernal pool area.  Clayton stated the area is on the side closer to the to the pond.  She stated the proposal is to dig down 4 or 5 inches and put in crushed stone.  She also noted that the area is staked out for the site walk.  

Clayton stated there is a culvert that goes under the road from a drain that picks up water that comes down Riverview Drive and empties into a boggy area shown on the plan.  She noted they did not feel it would have any impact on that area.  Clayton submitted a map from the Town Assessor’s Office, as well as a drawing from the Nature Conservancy which both show a vernal pool and bog area.  

Linde questioned the term “vernal pool” and explained it had a very specific meaning for the Inland Wetlands Commission.  Clayton noted that she actually put a disclaimer on her application because it has not been designated a vernal pool.  She said the only reason she is using that definition is from her observation it sometimes dries up completely but the in the Spring there are tree frogs, spotted salamanders.  She clarified that she was not using that term technically.  

O’Donnell asked if there was a map that showed the exact area the filled would be placed.  Clayton stated she felt the best tool would be the site walk.  Clayton also marked the area on the plan submitted with the application.  She further stated the existing paved road will be overlaid.

Linde  asked if the paved area is going to be overlaid with no increase in size.  Clayton stated that was correct.  Linde asked if the turnaround area where the crushed stone was proposed to go has already been scoured and marked by cars.  Clayton stated there is no vegetation on the surface.   Bechtel stated the area is accessible for maybe three cars.

Linde asked once the finished area is completed is there a way to discourage people from going beyond the designated area.  Bechtel suggested logs be placed on the side.  Clayton also suggested the placement of signage.   Linde expressed concern about the area expanding over time and suggested some sort of barrier be placed to prevent that from happening.  

Brown asked if the pavement is being built up several inches won’t you then put some dirt or gravel to the sides to even it in.  Clayton stated she would check with the contractor.  Brown stated if the edges were disturbed they would need to be reseeded as soon as they were complete.   Linde suggested the paver submit a statement of the sequence of events.  

The commission agreed to set a Site Walk for Saturday, September 29th at 9:15 a.m.


Rod Madison and Richard Sagan were present to discuss the proposal with the commission.  Mr. Madison presented the commission with maps outlining the area.  He stated one area of the cemetery at the top is surrounded by a stone wall and the rest is open with the exception of a little piece of property.  He pointed out the brook on the map.  He stated previously someone installed a pipe which has been removed because it broke.  Therefore a small triangle area is landlocked and the lawn can’t be cut.  
He stated there used to be a way to drive into the area.  

Madison stated they are proposing to have the brook be put into a pipe.  He stated the brook goes into a pipe at the property line and goes underneath the property owned by Point O Woods Maintenance area and under the cemetery and across Connecticut Road and goes in back of the houses and then down to the Three Mile River.  

Brown stated there used to be a 20 ft length of pipe that gathered the brook and now has been removed.  Bechtel stated there was discussion that the Pumping Station would be assisting in this manner.  

Brown stated the Cemetery Association is hoping to improve the area and they can’t access the area because someone removed the pipe.  She stated there first thought was to restore the pipe but now they are thinking it might be more practical from their standpoint to pipe the whole thing and grade it in gently and have grass.  Therefore they are here tonight to get the commission’s input and guidance.  

O’Donnell expressed concern that since the water flow is downhill from the location that is proposed to be changed would the piping hold an increased water flow and would it possibly create flooding down stream.  Madison said the water currently goes out the other end and joins that pipe.  O’Donnell stated there is still a certain amount that infiltrates into the ground and if it is piped it will all go to one location.  

Linde noted there are other areas in the beaches and expressed concern as to what would make this area different to pipe.  

The commission agreed to set a Site Walk for Saturday, September 29th at 8:45 a.m.  


Linde stated he would like revisit the Regulation rewrite which the commission started a couple of years ago.  Linde stated the two things that the commission has had real discussion around were being able to increase the regulated area around vernal pools and the other was to establish a buffer around watercourses.

Copies were distributed for the commission members to review.

Respectfully submitted,

Kim Groves
Land Use Administrator

52 Lyme St, Old Lyme, CT 06371  (860) 434-1605

Town Hall Hours  Monday - Friday: 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM