MLPOA Annual Meeting Minutes – 7/17/2021
Don Wilson, President of the MLPOA opened the 2021 Annual Meeting at 10:12 a.m. at the Rindge Recreation Center on Wellington Road, Rindge, NH with sixty members attending.
Opening Statements – Don welcomed and thanked all in attendance for joining the meeting. He then reviewed the need to be aware of the different concerns that impact the lake and our need to support the actions taking place to maintain the health of the lake.
He recognized Phil Simeone for his efforts in managing the Lake Host Program for over ten years. Phil has announced his interest to ‘retire’ from this position and Don asked others to consider volunteering for this role that is required in caring for the lake. It was suggested that we reach out to the Winchendon Springs Lake Association (WSLA) to see if there may be someone interested from that group of lake property owners.
Don announced that the MSLA Pancake Breakfast had been postponed until next Sunday, July 25.
Secretary Report – Don asked attendees for a vote to accept the 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting Minutes posted on the Lake Website. The motion was made by Doug Redfield to accept the 2020 Annual Meeting Minutes, and Don asked for a vote. All accepted the 2020 Minutes.
Treasurer Report – Doug Redfield, Treasurer, reviewed the goals to support the needs of the lake and the related expenses, the revenue collected throughout the years and the current collection and distributions via a Pie Chart presentation, largest amount supporting the health of the lake, 11% Operation expenses and 6% Insurance for Board of Directors and Annual Meeting Insurance premiums.
Doug explained the accounts in which monies are held; Bank Account, Investment Account, and a PayPal Account, used primarily for members paying dues on-line. Currently, the association has a healthy amount of funds that are needed to absorb our current operational and insurance expenses, reserve for any legal issues that may surface, and expenses to support future weed treatments.
Question – How much is collected Annually? Approximately $12K to $15K is collected in annual dues.
Comment from Tom Uhlig – Tom provided some background of operation expenses and the need to have a workable amount of funds available to cover basic operations and unexpected issues.
Question from Kathy John – Asked if it were True, that there is a possibility that the Grant Money received in the future could change (lessen) which would increase the amount we need to pay for future weed treatments? Yes, there is no guarantees that we would receive funds through State Grants and therefore, a sizable amount of reserve is needed to support future activities.
Also, stated that other invasive weeds could come into the lake such as Zebra mussels that are coming in from the CT river.
Don announced that there are other issues that impact the health of the lake such as Salt usage on roads and driveways during the winter months. He will continue to pursue this issue and look for ways to best address this concern.
Question – How do the two state Lake groups work together? The two groups do communicate on the concerns and topics of the lake such as lake drawdown, weed control and the Lake Host Program.
Question – Are the expenses shared by both lake associations? MLPOA has a close relationship with the WSLA President and Treasurer. Renee from the WSLA talked about the success of Weed Control actions taken, even before the use of Procella. Both associations contribute to the care of the lake and share expenses where needed.
Internal Audit Commitment – Don mentioned that there is a new committee within the MLPOA Board of Directors, composed of Tom Uhlig, Doug Redfield, and Mitch Romanow. Their charge is to review processes and procedures related to our three basic MLPOA accounts: Fidelity Investments, TD Bank and PayPal, and make recommendations to ensure sound financial management.
Police of Chief – Dan Anair spoke to the attendees about a variety of topics.
He was pleased to learn about the Identification Ownership Stickers provided by the Marine Patrol and encouraged all to use them on their smaller boats such as Kayaks, Canoes and even Swim Platforms, etc. When calls are received about the loss of these items, the Policy and Marine Patrol do not have any way to identify these missing items.
Rafting Issues need to be reported for the Marine Patrol to do their job. Take a photo and report the registration numbers and description of the boats. The more details the better to help address the issue.
Any town issues can be reported such as Speeding Issues.
Question from Chris Peahl – Is there a way to reduce the speeding issue on Wellington Road between 6:00 and 8:30 a.m. (anytime) for the safety of walkers and runners? Dan asked that issues such as this be reported so the department can address this issue.
Police – Call 355 – 2000 Cheshire Country Office. USE FOR ALL Police Calls.
Dan’s email address is DAnair@RindgePD.com
Dan reported that there are changes being made to their staff. Currently, he has two new officers going in and out of the Academy which will enhance the staff. Don thanked Dan for attending the meeting.
Marine Patrol – Lt. Crystal McLain, opened by stating how great it was to be at the Annual Meeting and thanked all for their interest in keeping the lake healthy and safe for boating. She gave her background as to how she reached her current full time manager position and welcomed the good communications between the MLPOA and the Marine Patrol. Their goal is to provide information to boaters and to keep everyone safe on the water. She stated that at times it is challenging to find the balance to let people have fun and to keep them safe. The Marine Patrol does everything related to safe boating recreation. Currently, there are 8 full time and 28 part time employees in NH. There is opportunity for employment so if there is an interest members can contact her at Crystal.H.McLain@dos.nh.gov (her recruiting pitch).
The use of a Vessel Identification Sticker (orange) on non-motorized boats is greatly encouraged so when loss is reported it is easier to return items to their owners. The Marine Patrol keeps a log of reported missing items. The Stickers were made available to attendees. Also, The Handbook of the NH Boating Laws and Responsibilities booklets were available which include their contact information.
Issues such as Rafting were addressed, and discussion took place. Crystal stated that Rafting is allowed in NH. The issue is about BLOCKING the right of passage on the waterway. In NH, only two boats can be tied up together. To identify areas around the lake with a NO Rafting Signage, there must be a formal 25 Signature petition, a Hearing and then a Vote from the State to approve the No Rafting area Signage.
A few years ago, there was a petition to stop rafting at the end of Camp StarFish (around the small islands) which approved the Signage currently posted.
Rafting equals only two (2) boats tied together and must be at least 50 feet from other Rafted boats.
Distance between boats underway is 150” from the shoreline. On this lake there are smaller areas which it is not possible to be 150” from the shoreline. The general rule for boats underway is to follow the “Safe Passage Law”, boats should simply slow down and keep their distance from one another. Reducing speed will also help to lessen the wake impact to shoreline property owners. The islands are considered shoreline. Boaters can think of ½ a football field = 150” or 2 water ski lines as a distance guideline.
All Boaters are required to carry a Boaters License. Beginning in 2008, this included attending a Boaters Education Course (BEC). Boaters in NH waters should review the license requirements for the state. Some Out-of-State Boaters Licenses are approved in NH. NASBL organization certifies BEC and validates proof of BEC approval in states. 5 Years in Coast Guard is valid for a Boaters License but not a Seaplane License. The MA Boaters license does not have a BEC requirement.
Life Jackets – Non-Powered boats, such as Paddle boats, Kayaks and Canoes, etc. REQUIRE A PFD. Over 13 Years of Age do not have to wear a PFD.
Shoreline impact – There was a good deal of discussion about smaller watercraft, ski and wakeboard boats and their use on the lake. Some highlights are found below. Jet Ski – (Personal Watercraft) less than 13” and no more than 20 miles per hour are acceptable. Ski and WakeBoard Boats – This type of vessel has additional restrictions. Concerns were voiced to their use and large wake made which can negatively impact the shoreline and smaller boating activities. Older Jet Ski – Stand-up models are restricted. Statewide research and studies are taking place for all boat usage and new restrictions are anticipated.
Communications – To report issues, it is best to send an email to the Marine Patrol Dispatch, use marine.partrol.dos.NH.gov Telephone #’s: 603-293-2037 and Toll Free 1-877-642-9700.
Question – Can you review the proper use of lighting on boats? Yes, the proper navigation lights installed on a boat should be used. Red and Green bow lighting and proper navigational stern and canopy lights should be used but no other lights while underway. Docking lights (headlights) should not be used when underway. Docking lights should only be used to lite up the dock area when docking; and not a large area of the surrounding water while docking or at the dock.
LED lighting should not be used underway. Illegal to operate. Okay when anchored.
Lighting on the shore – Shore Lighting Law – Lights should not represent boat navigation, i.e., green/red.
Question from Chris Dipre – Is there a reason why marine markers are not lit at night? It is not a NH requirement. It was identified that MA Markers are lit but not NH.
Question – Can you address the height of Power Lines hanging over the water? This question would be best addressed to the Power Company.
Question – Can a NO WAKE Zone Marker be placed at the entrance of the North of the Border harbor? More review and research would be required for this to happen.
Question – Should Water Jugs be used for Markers? No, they should not but goes back to “Finding the balance” to keep everyone safe on the water.
In general, all violations should be reported so action can take place to resolve issues.
Don thanked Crystal for her presentation and for joining the meeting today.
Election of Officers and Board of Directors – Don reviewed the terms of the MLPOA Board positions to the group and asked for a Motion to approve the Slate of Officers and Board Members. A favorable unanimous vote took place for both Officers and Board Members.
Lourdes Gray – Volunteer Lake Assessment Program (VLAP) Status of the Health of the Lake
Lourdes gave a presentation of the program with many interesting facts presented for the 1,300 lakes and ponds in NH including Lake Monomonac. Some highlights follow:
Age process… many changes take place throughout the years in any lake.
Weather conditions and building around the lake as well as lake boating, swimming, and fishing activities impact the condition of the lake water.
Slides showed the deepest parts of the lake and other locations identified as to where water testing is done on the lake. Attendees were encouraged to review the map of the targeted areas. The Marina area and Lord Brook are examples of moving water areas. The group collects water samples from areas where water comes into the lake. Two additional areas will be checked in 2021. Handouts were distributed for review.
The greatest concerns are the control of Phosphorus and PH in the Lake, reference was made to the two handouts. What causes these concerns? Water softeners, lawn chemicals, wildlife (geese), etc.
Cyanobacteria – Blue/Green – Contact Phone Number to report new Blooms. This number will be added to our website. Chlorophyll-A – Testing and control to salt usage and water softeners and general run off. Color of the Water – It is typical for the color of the lake water to change during the year.
Changing the level of the lake twice a year helps to manage the lake water condition.
This is not only a team effort of the committee but of every property owner and visitor to the lake to help us maintain the lake water quality. Some examples are to add plants to provide a natural buffer, practice good and consistent Septic care, use of proper Lawn care, Cleanup after our Pets, etc. It is with this combined effort that will help our lake remain healthy.
Don thanked Lourdes for her presentation and the efforts from the VLAP team.
Navian Development – Phil Simeone provided an update of this project and the actions to date of the ZBA due to the building project crossing wetlands. The project was denied due to the runoff which would impact the Wetlands. It is expected the Builder will return to the town for further consideration.
Don added that as a property owner association, we also have responsibilities to continue monitoring this project and others that impact our lake.
Chip Bull, property owner, gave a brief talk about Loon activity. He spoke about the current Loon activity on the lake and the Loon Prevention Conservation. It was proposed that the MLPOA join the conservation efforts to show our interest to care for the loons and suggested our membership. There was a motion presented by Don Wilson for the MLPOA to become a LPC member and asked for a vote to pay for this annual membership ($100.00). All were in favor and the motion accepted.
Raffle Prizes were given out throughout the meeting with Kathy Gray receiving the Grand Prize.
Lake Host Program – Don and Phil reviewed the need for a new Lake Host manager and Lake Host staff to continue this much needed program. The host and staff are required to complete two courses to work the ramp at the Marina to help with boat activity coming into the lake. All able body folks from the age of 16 can apply for these positions. Folks can refer to the NH Lakes.org for more information about the program. Ramp staff are paid $12.00 per hour. Phil can help with any questions.
Stephen Gray – incoming MLPOA President shared a few words regarding his plans going forward and thanked Don Wilson for his fine job as president and the extra efforts to keep the association strong during the past two years. Going forward… Stephen is interested in keeping the lake clean which means continuing the VLAP Water Testing work and Weed Treatment, increase the MLPOA membership, and have other people join the efforts needed to keep committee work and activities moving forward. He thanked everyone for their time and attendance at the meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 12:11 p.m.
Respectfully submitted, Jen Marszalek, MLPOA Secretary August 3, 2021