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Conservation and Climate Outreach Commission (View All)

Conservation Commission Monthly Meeting 06/27/12

Wednesday, June 27, 2012



6:00pm-8:00pm –June 27, 2012
Electric Building, 90 North Mountain Ave
--- To be approved at the July 25, 2012 Commission Meeting.
Chairperson Hartman called the meeting to order at 6:03pm.
Thomas Beam, Risa Buck, Cat Gould, (left at 6:38pm), Jim McGinnis, David Runkel and Mark Weir were present.  Jim Hartman and Roxane Beigel-Coryell were not present.
City Council Liaison: Carol Voisin (arrived at 6:22)
Staff Representative: Lee Tuneberg, Adam Hanks, and Mary McClary.
Chairperson Beam welcomed Julie Smitherman and Maria Harris, employees from the City of Ashland, Conservation and Planning Divisions, to the meeting.
Chairperson Beam asked for approval of the minutes for May 23, 2012.
Commissioner Buck moved to approve the minutes of May 23, 2012, seconded by Commissioner Gould.
Voice Vote: All Ayes.  The motion passed with a unanimous vote.
The next Conservation Commission meeting would be held July 25, 2012.
Mary McClary clarified the August meeting would be August 22, 2012.
Commissioner Buck will be in attendance for the July meeting.
The City Attorney and the City Recorder would attend the July meeting to do some training in roles and operating procedures.
Mike Faught the Public Works Director will be here in July for an update on the Road Diet.
Compost classes:
    Cat Gould, July 14
    Sheri Cellini, August 11
    Mark Weir, September 6
Julie Smitherman introduced herself to the Commission and gave a brief background of her employment and education in water conservation. She spoke about some new program changes and upgrading the conservation web site, which now includes an indoor water conservation guide.
 Her initial focus will be on a program designed for water irrigation, targeting the highest users.
The Commissioners introduced themselves and spoke to her about some of the Commission programs based around water conservation, for example, the Gray Water Event, marking the Storm Drains, Green Business Program, rainwater catchments, and AWACK.  Included in their Charter, the Commission relayed their support to water conservation, and was excited to work with Julie in the future.
No one present
  1. 4th of July planning
Commissioner Buck recapped the sub-committee meetings for the annual 4th of July event.  They will have a float in the parade positioned second to last with co-mingle carts and recycled banners that state RECYCLE HERE NOW and IMAGINE ZERO WASTE.  They are learning how to best interact with the public and relay a partnership between the Chamber, Recology, the Commission and the new Green Committee.  The float after the parade will become a collection station.
She spoke about volunteers from the Master Recyclers, the Commission and Parks Department all helping to work the event.  Also, this year, she mentioned there would be 30 clear stream containers, and a water station for refills.
She asked for approval from the Commission to spend up to $20.00 on recycling tee-shirts for the event.
Chairperson Beam deferred this item to agenda item B. (Commission Expenditures)
Commissioner Buck wanted to have a banner on the float representing the Conservation Commission.
Adam Hanks will contact the GIS staff and facilitate a paper banner and Chairperson Beam stated a more permanent banner could be purchased by the Commission in the future.
Chairperson Beam spoke about the sub-committees work with the Chamber the efforts to unify all city events with some commonalities, with an emphasis on conservation.
  1. Commission Expenditures – FY 2011-12 (thru June 30, 2012)
Adam Hanks explained the procedures for submitting expenditures for this physical year, next year, and how ending balances are not rolled over to the next year.
The members discussed the expenditures they wanted to look at for the new year, for example a guest speaker and possible changes to the conservation awards.
Commissioner Buck moved to make approximately 20 tee shirts for the July event that could be reused and would be completed by the June 29, 2012 deadline for a total of up to $150.00.  The motion was seconded by Commissioner Gould.
Commissioner McGinnis amended the motion for up to $300.00.  Commissioner Gould seconded the amendment.
Voice Vote: All Ayes.  The amended motion passed with a unanimous vote.
Voice Vote: All Ayes.  The motion passed with a unanimous vote.
  1. FY 2012-13 Commission Budget Appropriation Requests
Commissioner McGinnis made a request for $1,502.00 to fund a guest speaker for an event in late summer.  Chairperson Beam will put the subject on the July meeting under New Business.  In September they would hope to have proposal for expenditures with an event in October, 2012.
Commissioner Beam spoke to the Commission about the extended calendar and past budget expenditures.
  1. Unified Land Use Code Project
Maria Harris holds a planner position with the Community Development Department, City of Ashland for the past 15 years. She introduced the Unified Land Use Ordinance Project to the Commission focusing on the guidelines of trying to improve the wording/written document, formatting, and graphics in order to become more users friendly.  The last time land use ordinance was adopted was in 1964.  Their current goal was to make it accessible by April 2013 with the Planning Commission overseeing the project.
Maria and the Commissioners discussed different aspects of the project including incentives, water and energy conservation, conservation mythologies, size of new construction homes and green development measures.  She invited the Commission to keep her informed on their topics of interest.  Commissioner Runkel believed it made a lot of sense for the Commission to form a sub-committee that would work on any recommendations or suggestions from the Commission to the project.  Maria stated they would take any items of concern to the appropriate Committee or Commission for input.  Maria also explained the project consisted of re-working the existing code or removing barriers in the green development.  They would have to work within the contents of the existing policy and council goals.
Commissioner Runkel made a motion to form a Conservation Commission sub-committee to work with the city’s planning department on the revision of the Land Use Code Project. Commissioner Weir seconded the motion.
Chair-person Beam thanked Maria, on behalf of the Commission, for her attendance and report on the revision of the Land-Use Ordinances. 
Commissioner Weir wondered who would chair the sub-committee.  The members discussed their schedule of projects and if they would be able to support the new sub-committee.  In addition, they discussed the scope of work the sub-committee would cover and the possibility of  looking to people outside the Commission to help.
Voice Vote: All Ayes with one Abstain (Commissioner Buck).  The motion passed with a majority vote.
  1. Commission master calendar for FY 2012-2013
Commissioner Runkel brought up the meetings surrounding the holidays.  Chairperson Beam explained he felt developing a master calendar helped with communication and prepared the Commissioners for projects and items coming up in the future.  Adam Hanks felt it should be done by staff and put on the web site. Commissioner Weir felt the city web site was the best avenue for the Commissioners and citizens.
  1. City Operational Sustainability Plan Update
Commissioner McGinnis reported the sub-committee meets from 9-10 on the 2nd and 4th Thursday in the Siskiyou room at the Community Development Building.  Commissioner McGinnis thanked Adam for participating and helping the sub-committee.
They discussed overall strategies on how to approach sustainability planning for city operations. Also, they discussed the timing of the 6 recommendations to the City Council and how to apply and accomplish these recommendations. They want to develop a useable city sustainability template in preparation for the community sustainability plan.  At their next meeting, they will focus on finalizing sustainable principles.  They also discussed setting measureable goals to work towards, for example, a percentage of reduction of energy usage.
  1. Re-cap of Gray Water Event of June 23, 2012
Commissioner Weir thanked all the volunteers, staff and people involved with helping to facilitate the very successful event.  He requested the Commission send a thank-you letter to ECOS, Ron Dutton, Ashland Coop, Standing Stone, and some members of the city staff for helping to host and present the event.  Staff will take the responsibility for facilitating the thank-you letters.
Commissioner Weir made a motion to convert the gray water sub-committee to a water sub-committee to continue the movement of gray water and other water conservation work.  Commissioner McGinnis seconded the motion.
Voice Vote: All Ayes.  The motion passed with a unanimous vote.
Commissioner Weir would like to see the next step for the committee would be to help promote and create rebate forms from the City of Ashland for water saving systems.  Also, he would like to see the Commission sponsor another water event for 2013. 
  1. Staff Update on LEED
Adam met in Portland with different municipalities about what constitutes their LEED programs. He is putting together a packet regarding that data and including it into the operational sustainability piece of the sustainability plan coming forward.  He reported the City Council voted to certify to Silver LEED standards the new Fire Station II.  At that time, they did not vote for all future city buildings to be build certified to LEED standards.
  1. Staff Update on Fuel Efficiency/Idling Policy Implementation
Adam reported he had submitted some graphs in the last packet that summarized fuel usage.  He said Mike Morrison from the Public Works department was utilizing the data for analysis.  Fuel usage by city operations would be a concern for operational sustainability. 
Adam reported they have signs ordered for the parking yard areas, and police area regarding idling, and stickers to put into the vehicles every time there was an oil change performed.  During staff monthly safety meetings the idling policy will be covered and they are looking into a driving training class for staff on how they drive, which can benefit reductions in fuel consumption.
  1. Green Drinks
Commissioner Weir commented he regularly attends Green Drinks. He presented at their last meeting as a guest speaker about Gray Water.  He believed the Commission was limited on how they can support Green Drinks, mainly because the city does not financially support events associated with alcohol.  Chairperson Beam asked Commissioner Weir to invite some of the Green Drink’s members to some sub-committee group meetings.  Adam clarified, as a Commission; they could nominate a member to speak at an event, representing the Commission, which is different than the city officially sponsoring an event.
Set Aside
Councilor Voisin was very impressed and happy with the contents of the Gray Water event.  She congratulated the Commission a job well done. 
Commissioner Buck would like to put an item on a future agenda regarding a basic (3 line) mission statement for the Commission. 
Chairperson Beam spoke about the water savings at the school district due to a change in watering cycle.  The benefits showed a huge savings in the water usage and created healthier grass, due to less watering.  He believed they might be a candidate for a water conservation award next year. 
Mary McClary asked for a copy of all minutes from the sub-committee meetings.
Commissioner Runkel will speak to former member Sheri Cellini about the location of the Conservation Commission award pictures.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:10.
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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