Conservation Commission meeting of July 24, 2013
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
ASHLAND CONSERVATION COMMISSION
July 24, 2013
Community Development Building, Siskiyou Room
51 Winburn Way
1 CALL TO ORDER
Meeting called to order at 6:00 by Commission Chair Weir. In attendance: McGinnis, Hartman, Buck, Beam, Biegel-Coryell, Weir. Koopman arrived at 6:15. Staff - Hanks
2 CONSENT AGENDA / Reports
Commissioner Weir mentioned the consent items in the packet. Buck motioned for approval of minutes, second by McGinnis, June 26, 2013 minutes approved unanimously.
Buck gave a recap of the Fourth of July event (see attachment for details). Buck suggested that the Fourth of July planning for 2014 be placed on the Commission’s April 2014 meeting agenda. Biegel-Coryell reported that the SOU Student Union solar project (33 kw) was well on its way towards completion. Buck mentioned that the Chamber of Commerce weekly greeters meeting will be hosted by Recology on August 9th at the Recycle Center. McGinnis stated that the sustainability sub-committee will meet next week and hopes to have something for the full Commission to review at the August or September meeting. Koopman noted that SOCAN will have a meeting in Medford at the Library July 30th.
4. PUBLIC FORUM
Linda Chesney with the Ashland Parks & Recreation Department spoke about the Bear Creek Salmon Festival and asked for the Commission’s support in the form of a donation to rent durable goods to reduce/eliminate waste from the event and welcomed the Commission to have a booth at the event in addition to the car wash kit demonstration that Commissioner Beam is doing.
Huelz requested that the Commission do something to allow him to have free rental space at Pioneer Hall for the zero net energy classes he offers. Chair Weir stated that he would consult with Staff about the matter and respond at a future time.
Winston Friedman spoke to the Commission about divestment of the City’s investments relating to fossil fuel firms. McGinnis questioned staff about the matter and Hanks responded that most City investments are handled through a local government pool and other investments such as PERS are not handled by the City but by other public agencies. McGinnis made a motion to have staff research and report on the City’s current investment and banking policies to determine if the Commission is interested in making a divestment related policy recommendation to Council. Second from Hartman. All voted for the motion, with the exception of Beam.
5.1 – City Council Liaison Report
City Counclior Rosenthal reported that he requested and received approval from the Council to refer the request recently presented to the Council for the development and implementation of a bag ban ordinance regulating the use of plastic bags in the City. Rosenthal presented that he felt there were five options for the Commission to review and recommend on.
1) Develop a new ordinance
2) Expand on an existing ordinance (Styrofoam ban AMC Ch 9)
3) Create a voluntary program
4) Status Quo – keep things how they are
5) Something else
The Commission discussed the matter and voted 5-1 (Beam dissent) to create an ad-hoc sub-committee to bring something back to the Commission to review. Ad-hoc members include Biegel-Coryell, Buck, Silverberg, Weir.
5.2 - Solid Waste Franchise Agreement
Commissioner Beam, the Commission’s member of the Solid Waste Franchise Agreement working group, presented an update on the progress of the new franchise agreement with Recology. Beam stated that he feels it will be important to find a way for everyone in the community to help pay for the services as he currently sees various subsidies and inequities in the system. Beam mentioned that the working group has met twice and review draft documents prepared by City staff. Beam suggested that the Commission provide input for him to present to the working group at their meeting later in the week.
Items discussed by the Commission included, fleet management standards, setting of targets and goals for diversion and recycling, availability of post consumer composting services, vehicle milage reduction. Buck made a motion suggesting that the Commission develop five broad recommendations, which the Commission unanimously approved. The final five recommendations were developed as a memo to the working group (attached)
6. OLD BUSINESS
6.1- Water Sub-committee/Storm Drain Pilot Program
Beam updated the Commisison on the project stating that a meeting with City staff is scheduled and the project is moving forward and he will report as key items are addressed and put in place.
6.1.1 – Bear Creek Salon Festival Expenditure Request
The Commission voted unanimously to recommend expenditure of $85 for durable goods (plates, dishware, etc) for the festival and also to be a booth exhibitor.
6.2 – Leaf Bag Program Expenditure Request
Beam motioned (Hartman second) to approve a recommendation for expenditure of $300 to support the leaf bag purchase program, similar to previous year contributions from the Commission. Motion passed unanimously
7. NEW BUSINESS
7.1- Document Review/Packet Submittal Policy
McGinnis explained the reasoning behind his recommendation for the Commission to be more formal in how it handles and responds to Commissioner document/concept review. The Commission agreed in principle and will include it in the future as formal policy.
8. WRAP UP
8.1 – Review of goal assignments
Deferred by Chair Weir
8.2 – Items to be added to next agenda
Chair Weir listed anti idling discussion, car wash best practices, downtown storm drain inlet pilot project update, the unified land use code update, the electric rate study and results of the sustainability sub-committee as future agenda items and asked Commissioners to send him any additional requests.
8.3 – Adjournment
Meeting adjourned at 8:05 p.m.