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Conservation and Climate Outreach Commission (View All)

Conservation Commission Monthly Meeting 02/22/12

Wednesday, February 22, 2012



6:00pm-8:00pm –February 22, 2012
Community Development Building--- To be approved at the March 28, 2012 Commission Meeting
Chairperson Hartman called the meeting to order at 5:35 pm.
 Risa Buck, Sheri Cellini (arrived at 7pm) Stuart Corns, Jim Hartman, Jim McGinnis, David Runkel Thomas Beam, and Mark Weir were present.  Cat Gould was absent.
City Council Liaison: Carol Voisin,
Staff Representative: lee Tuneberg, Adam Hanks, and Mary McClary
SOU Representative: Shaun Franks (SOU Stainability Student Director)
Chairperson Hartman asked for approval of the minutes for January 25, 2012.
Commissioner McGinnis moved to accept the minutes of January 25, 2012.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Corns.
Voice Vote: All Ayes.  The motion passed with a unanimous vote.
Next meeting is scheduled for March 28, 2012.
Commissioner Runkel stated there was a press release for the Conservation Awards. He also mentioned the funds approved for the event only would cover the cost of the awards, if the awards stayed the same as last year, and the funds would not cover a picture and frame.  The discussion was set aside for budget items.
Chairperson Hartman went over the timeline of the rest of the meeting.
Shaun/SOU, The Student Sustainability Director, was in attendance and also would contribute later in the meeting to the SOU quarterly report.
Item VIII, Quarterly Liaison Reports was moved to first item.
Commissioner Corns spoke to the Commission about one of SOU’s capitol projects, North Campus Village, a 47 million dollar project.
The project will be approximately 200,000 plus square feet including dorms and kitchen facilities.  The 4-story wood structure will be minimum LEED Silver certified, with a possibility of Gold certification.  The project is the largest construction project within the City of Ashland was approved within 60 days through the City.  This project will create some local employment opportunities, and hope for a completion date in the fall of 2013.
The other project he mentioned was Churchill Hall with a 4.7 million dollar remodeling price tag and would mostly look the same, with a lot of the construction addressing the infrastructure.
Shaun Franks reported SOU was going to hire a Sustainability Coordinator.  There will also be a sustainability council meeting tomorrow and Shaun asked Mark Weir to attend, thereby creating a city presence.
Kay Brown, the Secretary of State and also a member on the Oregon Sustainability Board, came to the University in January. Shaun spoke with her regarding some sustainability measures around campus.  He would like to receive funds from Oregon Best, who uses some lottery funds to fund projects for renewable energies and sustainability studies for the bigger universities like OIT, PSU, OSU and U of O.  He is working to align with them to invest in SOU as well.
He reported that in the past SOU had offset their energy uses by purchasing renewable energy credits, (green tags) and now they would like to be more diverse and invest in clean energy, water and campus sustainability.  The fund will be renamed the SOU Green Fund.  Their hope was to invest more locally.   
  1. Review/Follow-up of January 25, 2012 Presentations
  1. Rain Barrels in Ashland —Mabrie Ormes
Set aside
  1. Rogue Valley Green Drinks—Fred ant/Lynn Blanch
Commissioner Weir felt a community based event that held discussions on a monthly basis was a great source of education and communication.  He asked if the Commission was interested in supporting the organization.  Commissioner McGinnis brought up the point that the City cannot support any alcohol events.  The Commissioners discussed different ideas for support, and Commissioner Weir asked for this item to be placed on the agenda.
  1. Recap of Commission Submittal to Council for February 11, 2012 Goal Setting
Commissioner McGinnis recapped the process to get the materials together for submission to the City Council’s meeting on February 11.  Unfortunately, the documents were not included in the Councilor’s packets.  He read emails from Lee Tuneberg and Larry Patterson regarding the meeting.  Adam explained the PDF file wad forwarded to the City Administrator’s office. 
Councilor Voisin remarked comments from the Council indicated they would like to receive feedback and information before goal setting.  She said there was about a 5 minute discussion about current goals.  Again, there was discussion among the members about the meaning of sustainability and the importance of having a Council discussion about sustainability.    
The Commission members discussed sending Council the Federal definition of sustainability, and also the difference between the meaning and sustainability principles.  The members were disappointed their documents were not included in the Council packet.
Commissioner Buck remarked prior to the last three years, the Conservation Commission would achieve different accomplishments based on set goals.  During the past three years, they have decided to communicate, work and integrate more with the Council to support the city goals to have a greater impact.   She didn’t feel the Commission was being effective and she appealed to staff and Council to help them make different choices.
Commissioner Weir asked about how to get the documents to the Council so the Commission can hear back about the decisions they make, for example adopting a Leed Silver standard for all future construction for city buildings.
Lee Tuneberg read to the Commission Larry’s Pattern’s email about how the Council will wait and determine necessary goals regarding homelessness and sustainability beyond city efforts.  He explained they might look at new goals after they received the Commission’s information. He stated the city was in a transitional period, and he hoped to ask for a study session to discuss the things the Commission had accomplished and the issues recommended, before they meet to set new goals.
Commissioner McGinnis believed the Commission was asking for direct communication with the City Council or to ask them to vote on specific issues.  Lee will ask the City Administrator which is the best way to proceed.  Lee will inform the Commission by email.
  1. Process Review – Council Goal Setting Submittal
Adam Hanks explained he was trying to make sure the Commission did not take any form of action after they had voted on the specific issues. (Documents for Council)  In addition he would like to make the agenda more concise and organized.
The members discussed procedures, items to be brought before Council for direction and items for the Commission, city operations, and Council issues.  They discussed conservation measures for gasoline and restructuring that into a % of reduction in fuel consumption.  Lee remarked staff’s main goals are to engineer, educate and enforce.  Commissioner McGinnis restated the sustainability plan would become a % of reduction in energy use by a certain time.  They also discussed different ideas about the idling policy, for example, Recology has signs at the recycling center as gentle reminders to turn engines off.
Commissioner Cellini arrived at 7:08pm.
Commissioner Gould reintegrated the Commission would like to see a reduction in fuel consumption and save money for the City.  She asked for the fuel consumption by the City vehicles and the standard consumption.  After the Commission is able to review the statistics, then they would be able to come up with a more measureable goal for a reduction in fuel consumption.  The Commissioners discussed in length what they hoped to accomplish and their expectations from staff for supporting information.
  1. Guidelines for Commission Expenditures and Sponsorship of Events
Lee explained this item went before Council to uniformly establish processes and consistency that apply to the different Committees and Commissions for expenditures and sponsorships of events.  He explained some items would need to go before Council, and some expenditures like Earth Day, which is a typical annual cost, would not.  Council will need to approve everything that we endorse or sponsor as a Commission.
He also explained as they motion and approve expenditures, the item goes before the Department Director and that person approves the payment. If the item was over a certain dollar amount, the item would require Council approval.  If the Department Director does not approve the item, the Commission may appeal their decision. 
Next year, January would be a good time for the Commission to decide items they would like to submit for their next year’s budget.  Commissioner Cellini asked to begin in November.  The Commissioners asked staff for reminders.
  1. Earth Day Planning – Content and Assignments
Delayed to next meeting – set aside
  1. Commission Expenditure Requests for FY 2011-12 (thru June 30, 2012)
The Commissioners discussed briefly items for budgetary purposes:
Earth Day demonstration
Annual Retreat
Prepaid Leaf Program
Noted Speakers
Sustainability Presentation
They asked to put this item on next month’s agenda.
Commissioner Weir asked for a progress report on the City Utility accounts and baseline data, including the breakdown of individual buildings from the November Commission meeting.  He would like to discuss the next step.
Commissioner Beam would like a report back about the Road Diet Letter, wondering if Council received the information.
Commissioner Buck gave the dates for the compost classes:
            June 9
            July 14
            August 11
            September 8
She asked the Commissioners to let her know which dates would work for which Commissioner to attend.
The Commissioners asked for a review on the Storm Drain Project, and also asked that the 4th of July discussion be added to the next month’s agenda.
Chairperson Hartman adjourned the meeting at 8:00 pm.
Respectfully submitted by:
Mary McClary
Administrative Assistant for Electric, Telecommunication
and the Conservation Department.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance to participate in this meeting, please contact the Community Development office at 541-488-5305 (TTY phone number is 1-800-735-2900).  Notification 72 hours prior to the meeting will enable the City to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to the meeting (28 CFR 35.102-35.104 ADA Title1).


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