District 10 Environment Committee
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Attendees: Mike MacDonald, Chet Mirocha, Becky Cline, Bob Hale, Susan Jane Cheney
Committee Chair Mike MacDonald, called the meeting to order at 7:10 p.m.
January 2011 meeting minutes were approved.
Upcoming hands-on volunteer events:
St. Paul has scheduled the annual Spring Parks Clean-up for Saturday, April 9th. The Committee will assist in promoting the event and will provide some volunteer help for the Como Pavilion kick-off event.
Shoreline weeding sessions should take place in July and August, and one of will take the place of a regular committee meeting. Dates will be set soon.
The Como Lake Neighborhood Network (CLNN) is planning a Saturday leaf clean-up for Saturday, April 16th. Janna Caywood is leading the organization of this event. The City will not be picking up bags this year, so the CLNN is seeking volunteers to pick up and transport bags to the compost site. Bob Hale suggested that leaf shredders also might be useful.
Como Lake turtle study
Mike suggested that a regular count of basking turtles by several individuals over a couple of months and possibly a turtle trapping program for identification and tagging (which would require Como Zoo permits and assistance of herpetologists) might tie in with Chris Lenhart’s UMN Bioproducts & Biosystems Engineering students’ turtle nesting habitat/hydrology/geomorphology study. Chris contacted Susan Jane Cheney about a lake tour date, and Committee members recommended that Thursday, April 14 () would be preferable to March 23. Susan Jane will get back to Chris and contact the Capitol Region Watershed District to enlist their assistance.
District 10 garden tour
Mike announced that this year’s garden tour will take place on Saturday, July 17th. St. Paul Recreation Director Darcy Rivers and the Chelsea Heights PTO are spearheading Staycation planning, and another meeting is scheduled for late February. Bob suggested involving Blooming St. Paul in the event.
Tree recognition program
Val Cunningham sent word that tree appreciation volunteers will have a notice soliciting tree nominations posted on the District 10 website soon and will send a news release to the Bugle and Monitor about the program. Bob mentioned that nominations for the city-wide recognition program are open until June; check the Blooming St. Paul website for specifics.
Tree identification project
Chet Mirocha reported that Parks & Rec staff member Don Ganje has approved the tree identification tags. The District 10 Council must send notification of its approval to Cy Kosel at Parks & Rec.
Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom (CWOC) news
Susan Jane, Committee liaison to the CWOC, reported that the City has been awarded the $218,000 grant from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund to transform the 17.75-acre woodland area in the park into the Outdoor Classroom. A link to television coverage of the news release can be found at the KTSP website: http://kstp.com/news/stories/S1975555.shtml?cat=1. For more on the CWOC, check the website www.comowoodland.org.
Capitol Region Watershed District (CRWD)
CRWD Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC) member Mike MacDonald reported that the CRWD reviewed approximately 30 permits in 2010. The CRWD is investigating the possibility of reducing parcel size requiring permit review to less than 1 acre; this action would likely double the number of permits triggering review. For more information about the watershed district, check the CRWD website (www.capitolregionwd.org).
Great River Park Master Plan
The last two community task force meetings, both from at Harriet Island, are scheduled for: March 15, to present preliminary plan recommendations; and May 24, for the draft implementation plan review. General public open houses will be held on: April 14, (location not yet determined) for draft master plan review; and June 15, at Harriet Island for the final master plan presentation and celebration.
The meeting adjourned at about
[Meeting summary prepared by Susan Jane Cheney]