Manchester Riverwalk Annual Meeting
President Bill Laberge welcomed people to the annual meeting and introduced the agenda, and invited people to attend our monthly committee meetings.
Approval of last year’s minutes
Motion to approve: Bill West / Second: Stephen Drunsic/ passed: all
Election of New Trustees
Cathy Stewart reelected for 3-year term
Lisa Helmholz Adams elected for 3-year term
Each were duly elected by the votes submitted via mail.
Manchester Riverwalk Assn. brought in $29K+ and had expenses $10K
Currently there is a balance of $19K
The income included grants from Right Track fund for bridge work; a Lion’s Club donation $1,500 for eco-restoration; Berkshire Bank $5,000 this year and $2,500 last year for gateways and signage. Those are the only funds earmarked specifically.
report attached from Dana
Bill elaborated that initial gateways are planned for this year and that the first efforts will be focused on the Town Green side of the Riverwalk. We need to gather surveys for the all properties so that grantors have full understanding.
Bill also explained that the sewer line behind the Drunsic’s building will be replaced as soon as weather allows in the Spring. Following that, Bill Drunsic explained, the power lines will also be buried back there. At that time we can do boring to see what the possibilities are for bridge footings. Bill L added that a smaller bridge will be put in further down the river, possibly one of the state’s surplus bridges. Bill explained that behind Melina White’s property, her property survey revealed that it only runs to 20’ close to the river. It is unknown who owns that property.
Lisa Helmholz Adams thanked all who contributed and who helped with the committee.
She submitted a report on the committees work over the past year.
Bill Laberge encouraged everyone to add names for the data base in order to broaden our support. He also thanked the Ellenbogens for their support at Village Picture Shows (and reminded us that Bill got interviewed by WCAX because of it). They have also offered to show the crowdsourcing video with their movie trailers.
Bill reported for the crowdsourcing committee that there is work being done (including the video) to do a Kickstarter or Indiegogo fundraiser. Jennifer W added that it will be helpful to have the Landworks signs sketched out to bolster the campaign. Signs need to get started so that people can see it is actually happening and we also need to spend our grants.
Eileen Braheney reported. She thanked Jennifer Waite for her consulting help, her time. She elaborated on the Berkshire Bank “special gift” of additional $2,500 on top of their $5,000, which was their clerical error but which they said we could keep.
The Fields Ponds Foundation grant was awarded in December 2016, but check arrived in January 2017, so it will be counted into this year’s funding. The committee is looking at Orvis, the VT Community Foundation, and other area banks.
Legal & Permitting Committee
Bill reported that the Town will give us a Memorandum of Understanding, will do work on Town Green, Lana Hauben and the Borellas have also given permission. The other side will be looked at next.
Jennifer Waite reported
We have $10K in hand for restoration. Some has been spent already with Landworks in site surveys. We will go forward behind Friends of the Sun, where there is a flatland area and a bit of a sloped area. We are looking for dates in spring to begin. The Lion’s Club donation will pay for the plants, and Jennifer asked for suggestions of where to get plants (she has two but wondered about others). Educational signage will be put in place.
She also recommended making the Town Green access more viable with better steps and some direction in the form of signage. Bill suggested that perhaps TJ Mora could do a workshop on stonework and step building? Emmy asked for a copy from Jennifer of the list of plants that could be used in the restoration and quantities needed. Bill explained that the ecological restoration is to eradicate invasives in two test areas and then eventually go forward with the rest of the Riverwalk.
A Communication Committee has been formed. We have names and emails but we have not followed up. We need to do email newsletters, etc. Also need to do a press release for Fields Ponds award, as well as the election of new officers. Lisa HA suggested checking with BBA to see if a senior wants to participate. Bill pointed out that we also want to do partnerships with Hildene, etc. Since RW has grown out of Transition Town Manchester, which has also worked on workshops on edible landscaping.
Any other business to be brought before the Annual Meeting? As there was none the meeting adjourned and Bill started a slide show of Riverwalk 2016 and future.
Motion to Adjourn: Emmy/Cathy/passed 10:58AM