Public Water Access Advisory Board

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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD
MINUTES
Meeting of December 4, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Thomas Quarles, Esq., Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Carol Barleon, OEP; B. David Bryan; Representative Duncan Chaplin; Brian Giles; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Patricia Goodridge; Cheryl Killam, GCD; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Allen K. MacNeil; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Dick Smith

Members Absent: Paul Blizzard; Jacquie Colburn, DES; David Barrett, DOS; Senator John T. Gallus; Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Derek Durbin, NH Lakes Association

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MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Tom Quarles called the meeting to order at 9:03 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the November 6, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Tom Quarles, Chairman

No changes were requested. Maynard Goldman moved to approve the minutes of November 6, 2006 as presented, seconded by Dunc Chaplin. The Board unanimously approved.

2. 2007 Meeting Schedule & Chair, Vice Chair Appointments - Tom Quarles

Tom reported that on November 15, Governor & Council designated Tom as Chairman of this board. Tom's term on the board will expire in October 2007, however, it is his intention to seek reappointment at that time.

Tom requested that members of the board consider appointing a Vice Chairman. Allen MacNeil has offered to fill the position and Tom felt it would be beneficial to have a prior Chairman in this position. Any members wishing to speak with Tom regarding this appointment may do so at any time prior to the January meeting when a vote will take place.

Tom mentioned that it was time to set the schedule for 2007. He stated a preference for keeping the meetings on the first Monday of each month but is willing to entertain other ideas. Members were asked to think about the schedule with a vote to take place at the January meeting regarding meeting dates for 2007. It was noted that the Next meeting would take place on January 8th.

3. NH Wildlife Journal - Tom Quarles

Tom questioned whether members wished to receive the Wildlife Journal, which had at one time been sent complimentary to members. It was the general consensus that members felt that receiving the magazine was worthwhile in providing information about and a connection to the Department other than through the board. Dan reminded the board that these subscriptions are paid for through access funds and are not actually complimentary. Back issues can be obtained through Public Affairs with new subscriptions to be sent to members beginning in January.

4. State Agency Reports for 2006 PWAAB Annual Report - Tom Quarles

Tom requested that state agencies provide their Annual Report to PWAAB by February 1, 2007. Time will be scheduled at upcoming meetings to discuss these reports. Johanna Lyons of DRED will provide a presentation to the board at the January meeting regarding their annual report. Johanna's report will be sent to members prior to the meeting to give them a chance to review and ask questions.

5. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Daniel Lynch & Jacquie Colburn

Jacquie was not in attendance due to illness so Dan Lynch provided the update.

It was noted that the next working group meeting will be held on December 8th at 9:00 a.m. onsite. Dan reported that the Wetlands permit had been submitted, and because it is a major impact project, once tentatively approved by DES, there will be a public hearing or public comment session scheduled. Once that is complete DES will seek Governor and Council approval of the permit. Once this is obtained, the Bureau of Public Works will initiate the bid process. The Department hopes to have a contract in place by March for work to begin in April 2007. At this time the federal aid grant application is in process and should be submitted by mid-December, with confirmation expected by February.

Tom questioned whether federal funding will be used for the project. Dan noted that without federal funding it would be difficult, but not impossible, to keep this project moving forward. The total cost of the project was questioned, and Dan reported that total costs should be approximately $1.9 million when complete. Tom further questioned the designation of other 2006 federal funding and Dan responded that the project at Merrymeeting Lake could be eligible for funding but it is uncertain at this time. Dan stated that federal funds are also used for maintenance and refurbishment of existing sites.

Pat Goodridge questioned how much land was purchased for the Water Street access. Dan answered that the parcel purchased from the City of Laconia was 1.4 acres. Pat also questioned the cost of the land and Dan stated that the Department had paid $180,000.00, which constitutes fair market value, as determined by a certified appraiser.

6. DRED Access Matters - Plymouth/Common Man Surplus Land - Johanna Lyons

Johanna noted that this item did not go through the CORD process because the property was originally purchased with federal highway funds, and so notification was not sent to DRED by NHDOT when NHDOT decided to surplus this property. Discussion needs to take place on how to better communicate within and between agencies in cases such as this. The NHDRED Trails Bureau has had conversations about this property regarding maintaining snowmobile access. The Common Man is definitely willing to cooperate with allowing snowmobile access to this property and in fact promotes it as such.


7. Baxter Lake, Rochester - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Dan briefly presented the completed project by showing the project plans and pictures of the work in progress and once complete. The only thing remaining to be done is paving of the top of the ramp, which will be done in the spring. Brian Giles commended the Department's limited use of impervious surfaces on this project. Cheryl Killam questioned wheelchair accessibility and stated she felt it would be important to formally designate at least one wheelchair accessible parking space. Dan stated he would follow up on this issue. Pat Goodridge questioned storm water runoff issues. Dan noted that the site is designed so that any water runoff would drain into the riprap beside the ramp or would run back towards the parking area according to grade. Tom questioned whether federal funding was used for this project. Dan reported that the Memorandum of Agreement with NHDES was for approximately $185,000 and that federal aid was used. It was also noted that this site would need to be added to the list of access sites on the NHFG website and new map. Carol Barleon will also update the OEP list with this site information.

8. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Dan Lynch provided an updated Boat Access Site Status Matrix to the board and discussed the updates noted as follows:

1) Hilton Park (Dover) - Repairs have been completed.

2) Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Wetlands permit received from NHDES, and approved by Governor & Council. Will move forward with bids and contracting for work to begin Spring 2007.

3) Baker River (Plymouth) - Work by the NHFG crew has begun, with the contractor scheduled to begin work later this week.

4) Lambert Park (Hooksett) - Wetlands permit application in process. NHDES has requested additional information, to which NHFG is responding.

5) Winnipesaukee River (Northfield) - Tom questioned what is planned for this site. Dan reported that an MOA is needed with NHDOT to move forward. Will be discussed further at January PWAAB meeting.

6) Connecticut River (Orford) - Dan will be more aggressive in following up on this item. Will pursue discussion with Town Selectmen rather than the lawyer to try to move this forward. Will be discussed further at January PWAAB meeting.

7) Merrimack River (Nashua) - Tom questioned a recent article in Hawkeye on this site, Greeley Park. Dan reported that the City has been provided with a lease agreement that has not yet been signed. At this time there is no vehicular RR crossing in place. The city needs to be the one to push this issue forward. Tom asked Mike Pillsbury to follow up with NHDOT's Rail & Transit Bureau for discussion in January whether they have authority or there is a process to force a private railroad to allow a crossing for public use.

8) Stinson Lake (Rumney) - Allen MacNeil questioned why the rocks in the water blocking existing ramp cannot be moved. Dan responded that a wetlands permit is needed in order to do that, and in order to get a permit a plan is required. 100% plans for this site are expected to be complete in 2007.

9) Wild Goose (Sunapee) - NHDOT is once again looking at traffic studies and roadway access issues. Dick Smith questioned what could be done to help move this project forward, and how to answer the questions of sportsmen who want to see this project competed. Dan recommended first being patient. Secondly, Dan recommended that these interested sportsmen be vocal and contact their state representatives to voice their concerns and get things moving again. Mike Pillsbury noted that since the site access driveway will be from a town road versus a state road it is not NHDOT's call where to put the access road. Dick stated he would try to get an action group together to address this issue.

9. Access Opportunities: Sea Bees Bridge, Chesterfield and Route 202 Peterborough - Tom Quarles and Mike Pillsbury

Sea Bees Bridge, Chesterfield - This site was reviewed with NHFG as a possible access site, however, was found to be too steep a grade to be acceptable. However, there is a path fisherman frequently use there. Limited parking is available on adjacent land owned by PSNH. Tom and Mike will discuss issues at this site further.

Route 202 Peterborough - Logs are in the water blocking access to the river. The road was put in for this access as part of a NHDOT mitigation project, based on a local request. It is unclear at this time who can handle debris removal from the water. Johanna noted that it would be difficult to get a permit for removal of the trees. Tom indicated that Marine Patrol's position is that trees can be removed if they create a hazard to navigation. Tom will speak with Mike further regarding access via the canal in the area, which would avoid the debris issue. Tom will also discuss this site with the Peterborough Conservation Commission.


10. Proposed Legislation - Pat Goodridge and Derek Durbin

Dan distributed a list of LSRs that NHDES will be monitoring published as of November 30, 2006. More LSRs could be added up until December 8, 2006. NHFG will also be putting forth an additional LSR regarding a conservation decal requirement for non-motorized boats, once a legislative sponsor is found. Jacquie and/or Dan will provide an updated list for January.

Pat Goodridge stated she was not in favor of a user fee for canoes/kayaks until powerboats pay their fair share. She suggested that instead of the conservation decal for non-motorized boats, a fee should be charged for motor boats according to the horsepower of their motors, i.e. the bigger the motor, the larger the fee (progressive tax). Pat will follow up with Jacquie Colburn to determine if this type of fee has been successful in other states.

Dick Smith stated that he is in favor of the conservation decal idea and said he would be happy to pay a small fee for his canoes to help preserve the resources he enjoys. Pat stated that her idea would raise more revenue for safety services related to boating. Dick stated that NH waters are very safe when compared to other states and he did not see funding for safety as a need.

Pat Goodridge reported that the Big Island Pond Corporation had not yet met, but will be meeting later in the week. Big Island Pond Corporation will monitor the status of this proposed legislation to put a state owned access site on this lake; although it is possible the legislation could be withdrawn.

Derek Durbin reported that the Lakes Association would be submitting legislation this week relative to the study of leasing of state land. Other proposals mentioned included out of state boat registrations and licensing of motorized watercraft rental agents. Derek also noted that he would include PWAAB members on the mailing list of the Association's publication, Lakeside. Tom Quarles mentioned that he would ensure the NH Rivers Council Newsletter will also be sent to PWAAB members.

11. Bass Tournaments - Dick Smith

Dick provided a brief presentation on the importance of fishing and boating access to the NH economy. He stated that in NH alone, boating, fishing and swimming adds $1.2 billion dollars each year. Dick stated that bass fishing is the most popular type of fishing in the United States, and that approximately 240,000 people fish in New Hampshire's freshwaters every year. Bass tournaments are popular because Americans love a little friendly competition as it is fun and also motivates us to further develop our skills. The average bass club in NH has only about fourteen members and so a tournament only includes about seven boats in most cases. Bass tournaments have no negative biological impacts on the fisheries as all tournaments are catch and release. Dick further discussed what he felt were adequate access sites in terms of number of sites, size of sites and designs that are friendly towards tournament participants, and stated that on many lakes, especially Squam Lake, the access is grossly inadequate.

Tom Quarles questioned how much NHFG regulates the number of participants in bass tournaments. Dick stated there are rules in place and the NHFG Conservation Officers have been really tough on tournament directors regarding these rules. These rules limit the number of participants to one half of the available public access parking spaces. Dick stated that the limit is set because there are many other users of these public waters and access sites and the bass tournaments should not be allowed to dominate all the spaces available. Carol Barleon stated lakes across the country are dealing with these very issues and that there is a large spectrum of lake use and carrying capacities and not all lakes are equal. Diversity is necessary. Discussion of these issues will continue at the January PWAAB meeting.

12. Signage Subcommittee - Tom Quarles

Due to the lateness of the hour, Tom deferred this item for discussion in January.

13. Update on Harilla's Landing, Lake Winnipesaukee - Tom Quarles

Tom noted that the sub-committee would be meeting following this meeting.
Old Business - None at this time

New Business - Mike Pillsbury told members that previous NHDOT representative Michael Burlage had returned safely from active military duty in Iraq.

Representative Dunc Chaplin notified the board that this would be his last meeting. He has very much enjoyed serving the board and hopes his replacement will be immediate. Tom thanked Dunc for his stellar attendance record and his participation on the board.

Public Comment - None at this time

Adjournment

Carol Barleon moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Cheryl Killam. The Board unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:50 a.m.

The next meeting will take place on January 8, 2007 at 9:00 a.m. in the East/West Conference Room at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord, N.H.
PWAAB Minutes

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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
November 6, 2006
9:00 a.m. - N.H. Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Thomas Quarles, Esq., Acting Chairman; Dave Mikolaities, NHFG; Carol Barleon, OEP; B. David Bryan; Representative Duncan Chaplin; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Patricia Goodridge; Cheryl Killam, GCD; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Allen K. MacNeil; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Dick Smith

Members Absent: Paul Blizzard; Brian Giles; David Barrett, DOS; Senator John T. Gallus; Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Derek Durbin, NH Lakes Association

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MEETING CONVENED

Acting Chairman Tom Quarles called the meeting to order at 9:04 a.m.

Chairman's Comments

Tom noted that currently minutes and agendas are both emailed and sent hard copy via USPS. He questioned members regarding the need to continue with sending hard copies. General consensus was that email works fine, with Dunc Chaplin requesting that hard copies continue to be sent to him. Any other members wishing to continue to receive items via USPS should contact Ellen Harrington to be included on the hard copy mailing list. Otherwise only email will be sent. You can also contact Ellen at 603/271-2225 should you at any time you feel you have missed a mailing.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the October 2, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Tom Quarles, Acting Chairman

No changes were requested. Allen MacNeil moved to approve the minutes of October 2, 2006 as presented, seconded by Mike Pillsbury. The Board unanimously approved.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Daniel Lynch & Jacquie Colburn

Jacquie stated that the working group met in October, with the two abutters in attendance as well. Both abutters signed off on permission for the dredging work that will need to take place once construction begins. Jacquie further noted that Councilor Burton visited the site on October 19th along with several city officials, and that all went well. The next working group meeting will be held on December 8th at 9:00 a.m. onsite.

As Dan Lynch was unable to attend this meeting, Dave Mikolaities filled in for him as NH Fish and Game's representative on the board. Dave reported that design plans are 100% complete. He also stated that Hong Environmental had completed the demolition of the Butler Buildings, and that the next hurdle will be the wetlands permit application which will be sent next week. The next step once that is approved will be the Federal Aid grant application.

Cheryl Killam noted that she had reviewed the plans and they appear to be in compliance with accessibility regulations for parking and boat access, as well as an accessible fishing pier.

Dave stated that the Department is still hopeful that the bids can be completed this winter in order for work to begin in the spring and be completed for an August opening.

3. CORD - State Owned Surplus Land, A.G.'s Opinion on LMAC/RMAC Authority - Tom Quarles & Jacquie Colburn

Tom reported that the Attorney General's Office has responded to the request of the LMAC and RMAC regarding clarification of their degree of authority as to disposal of state owned land.

Jacquie Colburn read from the October 18th letter from Allen Brooks of the Attorney General's Office:
"The Lakes Program Act and the Rivers Program Act do not provide clear mandatory authority to the respective advisory committees. The legislative history does not provide guidance sufficient to give control over disposing state owned land to committees established as advisory in nature. The statutes do require however, that the recommendations of the advisory committees be received and considered."

Jacquie further elaborated on the CORD process, which usually begins with the request of an individual or a corporation interested in purchasing property owned by a state agency. If the agency determines the property to be surplus, the CORD process begins. CORD notifies all state agencies and the county and municipality in which the property is located to determine if there is any interest in these governmental entities obtaining the property. CORD also notifies the LMAC, RMAC and PWAAB. The process involves all of the above agencies/committees having the opportunity to review and comment, as well as review by the NH Housing Finance Authority. The NH Housing Finance Authority has the right of first refusal, then it moves through the CORD process, then on to the Long Range Capital Planning and Utilization Committee (LRCPUC) a joint committee of the Legislature, then it goes on to Governor and Council. However, some property owned by NHDOT, which was acquired with federal or state highway funds is not required to follow this process. NHDOT can move properties through this process much faster, but is still required to allow review by RMAC and LMAC before moving it along to the LRCPUC for review and approval before then moving on to Governor and Council. The LRCPUC has the authority to override or veto the recommendations of the above agencies and committees.

Currently there are three properties involving requested leases on shorefront adjacent to state railroad corridors still pending in the CORD process:
1) Sun Lake Village, on Lake Winnisquam in Belmont - CORD members all recommended against disposal and it has been sent to the LRCPUC where it has been put on hold.
2) Scenic Ledges, on Lake Winnipesaukee in Laconia - Has not been brought before CORD at this time and according to a newspaper report the owner has withdrawn the request.
3) Lake Waukeewan - a private citizen is looking to lease 75 feet of frontage. This request has been through CORD and all members have recommended against disposal, however, the LRCPUC did recommend disposal.

Allen MacNeil questioned whether there was an official form used to make these requests to CORD. Jacquie stated that currently there is no form in place that she is aware of, and offered to create such a form, as well as a tracking sheet that can be used to follow the request through the process. Allen further stated that in his opinion, if all agencies and committees recommend against disposal, the LRCPUC should not be able to override that decision. Jacquie then stated that because the committees are advisory only in nature the LRCPUC does not necessarily have to heed their recommendations.

Tom questioned whether the LRCPUC or Governor and Council holds a public hearing on these items or if they are simply part of the regular agenda for the committees. Jacquie stated that she believed they are simply an agenda item as she is not aware of any public hearings taking place.

Tom then questioned Derek Durbin of the NH Lakes Association regarding any plans they may have for the upcoming legislative session. Derek stated that their organization was considering completing a land inventory to track the uses of land, increasing the role of the advisory committees to something a little more substantial, and possibly creating a commission to study issues with disposal of state land. No decisions have been made at this time but their legislative agenda will be announced soon. Derek will report to Tom or Jacquie when further information is available.

Jacquie then noted that the Governor's Office had requested information from several state agencies relative to land that is owned and maintained by each agency, including how much is currently being leased by others.

4. DRED Access Matters - Fall Mountain State Park and Plymouth/Common Man Surplus Land - Tom Quarles and Johanna Lyons

Tom questioned if Johanna had any input on the CORD surplus land review in Plymouth adjacent to the Common Man restaurant. Johanna stated she did not have that information but would check into the matter for discussion at next month's meeting.

Tom asked Johanna to describe the property listed as the Fall Mountain State Park in DRED's PWAAB 2005 Annual Report. Johanna commented that Fall Mountain State Forest (not Park) is a 943- acre parcel on the Langdon/Charleston town line, consisting of two great ponds and three communities of federally endangered species. The Nature Conservancy purchased the land from New England Power Company and gifted the land to the state, subject to a conservation easement. Pedestrian access, carry in boating, and riding of snowmobiles in the winter on designated trails are some of the activities allowed on the property.

5. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

As Dan Lynch was unable to attend the meeting, Dave Mikolaities provided an updated Boat Access Site Status Matrix to the board and discussed the updates noted in red as follows:

1) Umbagog Lake (Cambridge) - Repairs were scheduled to take place during the second week of October, however, due to winter icing conditions causing extensive damage the project will be changed to a complete refurbishment. The intent is to use wider concrete planks, such as those installed at Cedar Pond in Milan recently. The crew will wait to see how the planks hold up through the winter at Cedar Pond before proceeding with the repairs at Umbabgog Lake.

2) Baxter Lake (Rochester) - Construction has been completed by NHDES's Dam Bureau but the area will not be paved until spring due to the lateness of the season. Tom requested that Dave provide photos of the site so the board can see the accomplished project.

3) Hilton Park (Dover) - Have not had the opportunity to proceed on this project as yet but should be completing the work this month if the weather cooperates.

4) Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Wetlands permit received from NHDES. Still waiting for Governor and Council approval, hopefully by December.

5) Baker River (Plymouth) - Contracts for the concrete grade beam construction and fabrication of the steel handrail were approved by Governor and Council. At this time we are waiting for the water to recede so work can begin. Dave showed the board plans for the site and discussed the issue of not extending the handrail to the bottom of the steps. It was felt that due to siltation problems it would not be necessary to install handrail for the bottom two steps. Allen MacNeil was in agreement and offered to speak to the Plymouth Selectmen regarding the decision.

6) Newfound Lake (Bristol) - Dock ladders will be installed in Spring 2007. When total site refurbishment is needed the dock will be redesigned and lowered. Tom questioned whether the dock was equipped with reflective material to promote snowmobile safety. Dave will look into this issue. (There is a light installed at the site so the dock is fully visible at night.)

Dick Smith questioned if any progress had been made regarding the Wild Goose site on Lake Sunapee in Newbury. Mike Pillsbury reported that to the best of his knowledge there had been no further action. Dave noted that the traffic study issue is still being addressed. Dave will research progress and report at next month's meeting.

6. Proposed Legislation - Big Island Pond, Hampstead (LSR-2007-S-0209-R) - Tom Quarles

As a long time resident of the area, Pat Goodridge reported on the issue of legislation regarding public access to Big Island Pond in Hampstead. A constituent in the area is upset because a fee is charged for locked gate access to the boat launch site and contacted Senator Barnes to see what could be done. A $15.00 fee is charged yearly for a locked parking area due to problems with theft and vandalism at the site. Pat has spoken to Senator Barnes and has turned the proposal and information over to the Executive Board of Big Island Pond Corporation for them to handle as they are the entity that manages the launch site.

Pat stated that she had also spoken to Senator Barnes about legislation regarding signage of access sites, and questioned whether any of the legislators on this board would be interested in co-sponsoring any such legislation. Pat felt that legislation of this type should come from members of this board, perhaps in concert with Senator Barnes. Pat also felt that Director Perry should be consulted before moving forward with this issue.

Tom stated that he did not feel that legislation is necessary but that a group effort by the agencies involved could bring this project to fruition. Dave Mikolaities stated that this issue is more complicated than if first appears. Currently, approximately half of NHFG's access sites are signed with universal access signs. NHDOT was contacted regarding signage and told NHFG that sign proliferation is a hot issue and that a detailed plan of each and every sign location is necessary and would need to be approved by NHDOT for state roads and by each municipality involved for non-state roadways, prior to any signs being erected. Also, the further in advance of the access site you wish to place signs, the more signs are needed. With limited NHFG maintenance staff available this would be a huge undertaking.

Dick Smith stated that as tourism is a booming industry in New Hampshire that it's important that signs be put in place to make it easier for tourists to find their way to NH's available natural resources. Frustrated tourists are not likely to leave with a favorable view of our beautiful state. Dick also believes that a group agency effort could be effective in making this initiative a reality. However, he also noted that the information available online at the Fish and Game website needs updating. Dave reported that this is in progress and that GIS information is currently being gathered and that pending available funding, new access maps should be available in 2007. Maynard Goldman reported that the issue of signage on a statewide basis is the stuff of which long novels could be written. He agreed that it is an important initiative but that it would be important to have political support, as there are likely to be many obstacles once the process begins.

As the issue of Bass Tournaments seems to be raised often, Tom questioned whether NHFG regulates the number of participants in these tournaments. Dick Smith noted that Inland Fisheries of NHFG schedules these events and the number of clubs allowed to hold a tournament on a lake is determined by the size of the water body. Small lakes only allow one club at a time, whereas larger lakes can handle several clubs at the same time. Also, tournament participants are only allowed to utilize half of the total number of parking spaces available at access sites on each lake.

Tom stated that he will soon be asking for volunteers for a Signage Sub-committee. Big thanks to Dick Smith who was the first to volunteer. This item will be put on the agenda for December in order to get input from Director Perry.

Tom requested that a member of the board keep apprised of and report on legislative issues relevant to this board as they arise. Dunc Chaplin and Derek Durbin both agreed to keep the board informed of any board related legislative issues.

7. Update on Harilla's Landing, Lake Winnipesaukee - Tom Quarles

Tom noted that the sub-committee would be meeting following this meeting. NHDOT Bureau of Right of Way is the lead agency working on the land swap. The Yacht Club was asking for a fee interest rather than an easement, but has since decided that an easement is fine so long as they have adequate access and can gate the access for private use only. The process is moving forward.

8. Long Term Projects and Sub-committees - Tom Quarles

As the signage issue was discussed earlier, Tom moved on to the other issue of accessibility to public access sites as raised by Cheryl Killam. Cheryl felt that with the help of a few board members she would be able to identify accessible sites and note them on the OEP map but that a sub-committee did not need to be formed to deal with the issue.

Old Business - None at this time

New Business

Tom made the board aware of a recent project in Tilton called Riverfront Park, dedicated on September 9, 2006. Tom noted that this was once a factory, then a superfund site but that visionary residents were able to create a park with a canoe/cartop access onsite. There are parking and bathroom facilities. It provides a take-out for a "quickwater" stretch of the Winnipesaukee River, starting at the DOT informal access site on Rt. 140 just south of Exit 20 off I-93. This river stretch has water year round due to various hydro dams in the area.

Tom noted another project on Route 9, SeaBees Bridge, on the Connecticut River between Chesterfield, NH and Brattleboro, VT. The old bridge was left in place when a new one was built. Tom believes the old bridge will be used as part of a bicycle/pedestrian trail in the future. Route 9 on the N.H. side is marked "no parking" but on nearby Bittersweet Lane there is a dirt path that leads to the water. Tom questioned whether the path could be used to access the water by canoe/cartop boat and requested that Mike Pillsbury report back next month.

Tom further questioned Mike Pillsbury regarding the Route 202, Peterborough widening project. Tom noted that currently there is an informal access point to the Contoocook River at the Route 202 and Scott Mitchell Road intersection. Tom had previously spoken with Mike Burlage, NHDOT's former representative to the PWAAB regarding this access site, and found that part of the property necessary for access is owned by the Harris Center. Separately, Tom noticed recently that about a mile upstream there is a new access sign leading to parking at a NHDOT wetlands mitigation site. However, access to the river is blocked by a downed tree. Tom requested that someone at NHDOT work to improve access to the river in this area, possibly using an old canal that is on one side of the mitigation site. Mike Pillsbury will look into this issue and report back next month.

Johanna Lyons noted that the final meeting of the Study Commission of the State Park System will be held on November 13th at 2:00 p.m. at the State House, Room 100, should anyone be interested in attending.

Other Items for Board Consideration - None at this time

Public Comment - None at this time

Adjournment

Carol Barleon moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Cheryl Killam. The Board unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:15 a.m.

The next meeting will take place on December 4, 2006 at 9:00 a.m. in the East/West Conference Room at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord, N.H.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
October 2, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters
PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD

Members Present: Thomas Quarles, Esq., Acting Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Dick Smith; Paul Blizzard; B. David Bryan; Brian Giles; Allen K. MacNeil; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Representative Duncan Chaplin

Members Absent: Cheryl Killam, GCD; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Carol Barleon, OEP; Patricia Goodridge; David Barrett, DOS; Senator John T. Gallus; Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Dave Mikolaities, NHFG

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MEETING CONVENED

Acting Chairman Tom Quarles called the meeting to order at 9:06 a.m.

Chairman's Comments

Tom thanked Allen for his years of service and stated at this time he will be the "Acting" Chairman until confirmed by the Governor. Tom further stated that Allen and himself had been in contact with the Governor's Office and were informed that because the PWAAB statute states that a chairman is to be "designated" by the Governor, Tom's elevation to Chairman would therefore not need to be approved by the Governor's Council.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the September 11, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Tom Quarles, Acting Chairman

No changes were requested so Allen MacNeil moved to approve the minutes of September 11, 2006 as presented, seconded by Brian Giles. The Board unanimously approved, with Daniel Lynch abstaining.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Daniel Lynch & Jacquie Colburn

Jacquie stated that the working group did not meet in September, but that a meeting would be taking place at Water Street on October 13th. At that point Jacquie deferred to Dan for further update.
Dan reported that final design work is still in progress. Fay, Spofford, & Thorndike (FST) is currently preparing the Wetlands and Site Specific permits. The Wetlands Permit application requires three abutters to sign off on acknowledgment of notification of the work to take place within 20 feet of the property line. The three abutters are Boulia-Gorrell Lumber Company, NHDES Wastewater Treatment Facility, and Ralph Langevin, owner of Martel's. Another component requires sign off by one abutter, Martel's, because the dredging will cross the mid point of the channel. The goal is to have the applications submitted by the end of October. NHDES will try to expedite the permit process as much as possible. Submittal of the Federal Aid Grant application is also in process. Environmental documentation is being gathered for the application at this time. The grant should take about 30 days for review and award notification, barring any issues. Dan is hopeful that the project can be put out to bid by December in order for construction to begin early in the spring for completion by July.

Jacquie noted that at the October 13th working group meeting the group should try to set public hearing dates to help keep the process moving along.

Tom questioned if there had been any further correspondence from Director Perry to Senator Johnson since the August 24th letter. Dan responded that monitoring well testing for contamination from the Boulia-Gorrell site had been taking place regularly. A comprehensive testing report for the seven monitoring wells, including historical data, was provided in April 2006. Tests for well number seven, which is on NHFG property, showed all tests below detection level, or substantially below acceptable water quality standards, with the exception of the benzene testing completed in April and July of 2005, which showed trace amounts. This data is further substantiated by additional testing completed by FST. Dan stated that there is no contamination issue at this site. Anyone interested in seeing the testing report can contact Dan for that information.

Dan also reported that a request had come in via email, from a group called the Voting Sportsmen, requesting information regarding how much had been spent to date on this project and what the estimated completion costs will be. The email also requested information regarding the cost per parking space for this project in comparison with the cost per parking space at Hilton Park in Dover, and how much of these costs are being borne by the sportsmen. Dan presumed this request was from the same group that had requested the information regarding contamination at the Water Street site. Dan stated that the two sites cannot be compared as one was a refurbishment project on property already owned by the state, while the other is new construction on recently purchased property. Brian Giles noted that there really is no comparison between the two sites as one was a concept that has never become reality while the other is well underway.

Allen MacNeil stated that Voting Sportsmen is the same person who had contacted him regarding this site that he had spoken about at last month's meeting. Allen further stated that if this person had all his facts straight there would be no issue. The question was previously asked and has been answered as this person has called and spoken to several of the board members. Allen urged board members to use caution when speaking with this individual as he is just trying to muddy the waters with his questions. Allen noted that if contacted, the best approach may be to ask the individual to contact Acting Chairman Quarles or Dan Lynch.

3. Town of Franklin Request (Boat Ramp Repairs) - Daniel Lynch, NHFG

Tom noted that he had been contacted by a Franklin City Councilor regarding a city boat ramp in need of repair. Dan contacted City Manager, Greg Doyon, by telephone to discuss the request. Basically the city was just exploring the option of the use of NHFG's 30-year lease agreement and looking for information on the Department's statewide boat access program. Dave Mikolaities and Rich Tichko visited the site and then met with City Manager, Greg Doyon and provided him with a copy of a use agreement, similar to the one pending with the City of Nashua. Dave stated that the ramp is not in bad condition at this time, and the location is fair, although shallow water can make launching difficult at times. Tom Quarles questioned if the ramp is posted as city resident use only? Dave believed use is limited to residents only, although there were no signs posted. Jacquie Colburn noted that Webster Lake is a fairly small lake, which has water quality issues. The lake was closed several times this year due to toxic algae blooms.

Tom asked Dan the status of the agreement with the City of Nashua. Dan stated that the Use Agreement template had been sent to Nashua but no agreement was ever reached. Tom further questioned the use agreement with Orford. Dan stated that this agreement is still in review by the town's attorney. There are two questions that remain to be answered to the town's satisfaction regarding when the agreement would take effect and when repairs would be made. Questions regarding refurbishments in the later years of the agreement and their effect on the terms of the agreement are still unanswered. Allen MacNeil stated that the voters of the Town of Orford had approved moving forward with the use agreement, however the town has not yet completed their review process. Allen further stated that most towns and cities are not aware that such an option exists. Tom suggested that NHFG put out some kind of press release to make municipalities in New Hampshire aware of this option available through the NHFG, once the agreement with either Orford or Nashua have been completed.

4. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review - Tom Quarles

Tom noted two concerns: The first being the proposal by NHDOT to dispose of land in Plymouth, adjacent to the Pemigewasset River (SP-P4600H Plymouth/Logan); and the second being ensuring that the board is notified of these projects that do not need to go through CORD review.
Jacquie Colburn reported that LMAC and RMAC are working to improve communication, as some NHDOT requests no longer go through CORD review. Jacquie thought the easiest way to ensure the board is notified is to keep this topic as a monthly agenda item so she can report on anything relevant that comes through those channels.

Regarding the land in Plymouth, adjacent to the Pemigewasset River (SP-P4600H Plymouth/Logan), the RMAC discussed this item in August and conditionally approved disposal of this parcel. Compliance with the Shoreline Protection Act, making note of a well on the property, and continued use of the parcel by snowmobiles are the conditions recommended. Once sent back to NHDOT by the LMAC/RMAC these items go to the House Long Range Planning Committee and are eventually sent through Governor and Council for approval of disposal. Tom questioned how the agency goes about actually selling the property. Mike Pillsbury reported that the originating bureau handles the sale. Jacquie noted that usually it is an abutter requesting to purchase the property that starts the whole process. Other state agencies and municipalities are notified and have first option to purchase before property is disposed of otherwise. Tom will follow up with Johanna Lyons regarding DRED's position regarding this parcel.

Mike Pillsbury reported that there is another parcel that he was asked to investigate at last months meeting, which is going through the same disposal process. The parcel is in Holderness, local abutters have asked for a 50-foot strip of property between the road and their property. The property does not provide access to the lake, it is requested only so beatification of the area can be completed.

5. Webster Farm Conservation Project Update - Daniel Lynch, NHFG

Tom requested an update on the efforts to provide canoe/kayak access to the river closer than the cemetery, even if only for drop off and pick up as opposed to parking. Dan responded that the item had gone before Governor and Council as a "Replacement Easement Deed" by the Society for the Protection of NH Forests (SPNF). For the approximately $30,000.00 provided by the Department, we were able to protect the public's right to access the river. Dan read at length the affirmative rights of the easement holder. Basically, SPNF was not amenable to the Department's request to go back to the landowner and request the right to take vehicles further than the cemetery. The principal interest in the easement was the agricultural aspect and it was felt that moving the parking closer to the river would interfere with the agricultural functionality of the property. Tom questioned whether the Department would be maintaining the site and necessary signage. Dave Mikolaities will follow up regarding signage to direct the public to the appropriate parking area for access to the river. Otherwise, there will be no improvements or modifications made to the access site: it will remain as is.

Tom felt it was important that a member of the board visit the site and investigate the ease with which one could put in a canoe or kayak and requested that anyone with the opportunity do so and report back to the board.

6. 2005 Annual Report -Tom Quarles

Tom had several questions regarding the 2005 Annual Report. Questions for NHDRED will be answered at next month's meeting, as Johanna Lyons was unable to attend this month.

Tom's question for NHDES was in regards to "Surface Water Quality Assessments" as relates to designated uses for swimming and aquatic life support. Jacquie Colburn stated that these figures were part of the Clean Water Act's reporting requirements to the EPA. The 305B Report is a comprehensive report of all surface water quality assessments for lakes, rivers, oceans, etc. The 303D List is a list of impaired waters. All this information can be found on the NHDES website. All NH bodies of water are given designated uses and NHDES is tasked with assessing these water-bodies to see how well they support their designated use. Some designated uses include: primary contact recreation, secondary contact recreation, swimming, aquatic life support, shellfish, and drinking water. There are a number of parameters that must be tested to aid in determining impairment for those designated uses. There are many different things that can be considered impairments, such as non-native aquatic plants, dissolved oxygen levels, sedimentation and siltation. Jacquie noted that this process is ongoing and it will take many, many years to fully assess all bodies of water in NH. The data provided in the 2005 Annual Report was from the 2004 report to the EPA, and the information for the 2006 Annual Report will be significantly updated as the report to EPA is due this year as well. Brian Giles noted that this information, as provided, was very alarming. Jacquie restated that this information is available to the general public through the NHDES website. Jacquie suggested that a meeting or two be set aside to go over the Annual Report soon after it is provided, rather than waiting until someone has questions.

Tom questioned whether this information, as reported to the EPA, constituted violation of the Clean Water Act. Jacquie stated that she would need to follow up and would report on this in the 2006 Annual Report. Jacquie offered to provide a presentation to the board at a later date to explain this process and the data collected and what it all means in regards to water quality.

Allen MacNeil noted that in addition to the state agency representatives, any of the special interest group representatives on the board are welcome to provide information for the Annual Report as well.

Tom asked Dan Lynch to provide clarification of the following statement from the Annual Report: "During Calendar Year 2005, one new boat access site was completed; two major access projects were under active planning and pre-construction activities; a number of existing sites were evaluated for improvements; an easement was secured; several properties were evaluated for future acquisition or development; and 134 existing sites were maintained. The Statewide Public Boat Access Program expended $872,616.37 in 2005." Dan reported that the new access completed was at Hawkins Pond in Meredith; the two major projects under active planning were Lake Winnisquam and Merrymeeting Lake; existing sites evaluated are discussed further on in the report; and the easement secured refers to Hoyt Pond in Madbury. Dan briefly discussed the particulars of this easement. The total expenditures as listed were designated as follows: 'Transfers to Other State Agencies' in the amount of $187,400.00 was to the NHDES Dam Bureau for construction of the Baxter Lake Dam and access site in Rochester; 'Personal Services-Temporary' in the amount of $57,413.60 was payroll for the seasonal maintenance personnel; and 'Reimbursement' in the amount of $167,030.48 was payroll for Access Program personnel. Tom questioned the total amount of the Statewide Boat Access Program fund. Dan noted that this amount is approximately 1.5 million of state dollars and approximately the same amount from the federal side, for a total of $3,000,000.00. Tom suggested that on the 2006 Annual Report the amounts for both state and federal funding be provided.

7. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Tom requested an update on the proposed access at Sunapee. Dan responded that the Town of Newbury had requested that NHDOT re-review the traffic study but Dan has not heard anything further. Dan stated that NHFG had not pushed this issue due to staff being very busy with other sites at this time. Dan is hopeful that once Winnisquam is well on its way then we can move forward with Sunapee.

Dan stated that Dave Mikolaities has been doing an outstanding job of keeping these projects moving forward. Dave provided an updated Boat Access Site Status Matrix to the board with updates noted in red.

1. Millsfield Pond (Millsfield) -Repairs have been completed. Erosion and sedimentation issues have been addressed. The timber company we lease this property from is looking to possibly subdivide into lots. We need to ensure that we do not lose this newly refurbished site.

2. Cedar Pond (Milan) - Repairs have been completed.

3. Umbagog Lake (Cambridge) - Repairs are scheduled to take place during the second week of October.

4. Baxter Lake (Rochester) - Construction is being completed by NHDES's Dam Bureau. Should be completed by November 1, 2006.
5. Hilton Park (Dover) - NHDOT has received the permit for repairs and work should be completed this fall.

6. Spectacle Pond (Meredith) - Parking area has been formalized and signage is in place. Project complete.

7. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Wetlands permit received from NHDES, but still awaiting 20-day comment period, then will go forward to Governor and Council for approval. Bids for tree cutting and pavement of the parking area will be put out this fall for Spring 2007 repairs.

8. Baker River (Plymouth) - Contracts for the concrete grade beam construction and fabrication of the steel handrail are scheduled for Governor and Council review on October 11, 2006. Work should begin soon after if contracts are approved.

9. Eagle Pond (Wilmot) - Tom questioned if there was room for multiple vehicles to cross the highway and then the railroad tracks. Dan noted that a land agent is working with NHDOT Rail and Transit Bureau to resolve this issue.

10. Newfound Lake (Bristol) - Allen MacNeil questioned when repairs at this site would be addressed. Dave noted that instead of lowering the dock, ladders could be added, similar to the Water Street site design and that repairs may take a year or two as NHFG's limited construction staff is very busy at other sites. Dan stated that snowmobile safety is also an issue here and Tom questioned whether the dock was equipped with reflective material. Dave will look into this issue.

8. Update on Harilla's Landing - Tom Quarles

Tom is waiting to hear from Attorney Cronin for the Yacht Club who is to speak with Paul Goodwin, the contractor's representative, to discuss the wetland's permit for dock reconstruction and other Phase One proposals. Attorney Cronin is also meeting with NHDOT Bureau of Right of Way regarding the land swap. The land swap will take a number of months to resolve. Dick Smith questioned how many parking spaces would be available at this site. Tom stated that the process has not really progressed to that point yet but he expects at least 15 spaces or so. Roadside parking will still be allowed as well. Dick believes that access to Lake Winnipesaukee is critical and thought it would be a good idea to have a brainstorming session to discuss creative options for access in perpetuity to Lake Winnipesaukee. Tom noted that interested sportsmen need to get involved in the legislative process, as this board can be a catalyst, but cannot do everything.

Paul Blizzard noted that, at least as far as Lakeport Landing is concerned, the issue is not so much the fee for use of ramps, it is more the upkeep of the site and the necessary services provided onsite that is the issue.

9. Long Term Projects and Sub-committees - Tom Quarles

Tom noted that as both individuals who requested special projects are not in attendance today, he would briefly discuss the items and then wait until these individuals are in attendance to move forward.

Pat Goodridge suggested that all mapped sites, especially NHFG owned sites have proper signage along the road to help promote their use. When Pat becomes an active member of the board again she will be assigned as chairperson of this subcommittee.

Cheryl Killam wanted to have a list of access sites that are wheelchair accessible as that information is not readily available at this time. Cheryl had previously stated that she will only certify sites that she has visited and confirmed as accessible. Cheryl will be appointed chairperson of this subcommittee.

Chairman's Comments

Tom stated that he has been a member of this board since its inception in 1993. Tom feels the board does valuable work and does a great job of looking out for the public's best interest, and he looks forward to working with everyone as chairman. Tom is hopeful the Governor will officially appoint him as chairman later this month. Tom further stated that his term expires in October of 2007, but that he will seek to be reappointed at that time.

Other Items for Board Consideration

Dick Smith questioned whether NHFG had a definition of minimum reasonable access. Dan noted that the Statewide Public Access Plan outlines the recommendations. This should be available in the PWAAB Notebook all members have a copy of. Tom noted that this document is the foundation of this board and the NHFG Public Access Program. Pages 28 and 29 of the Plan outline the standards and goals for access. Dick questioned expending funds and stocking fish if there is not adequate access. Dan stated that if there is no available public access, the water body is not stocked with fish. Jacquie noted that NHDES has similar rules regarding expending funds for milfoil and other invasive plant management. Jacquie will bring further information regarding these guidelines to the next meeting.

Jacquie Colburn briefly discussed public access in the state of Montana, where she recently visited. She took a day to drive around Flathead Lake, which is about the same size as Lake Winnipesaukee and has about six state parks around the lake, each with access to the water. She will incorporate pictures from her trip into the presentation she will provide on water quality.

Mike Pillsbury offered an update on the Woodstock railroad property providing access to the Pemigewasset River and the pedestrian railroad crossing. A pre-hearing meeting will be taking place in November, with the hearing to follow; things are progressing along in establishing this crossing.

Public Comment - None at this time

Adjournment

Allen MacNeil moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Mike Pillsbury. The Board unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:51 a.m.

The next meeting will take place on November 6, 2006 at 9:00 a.m. in the East/West Conference Room at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord, N.H.

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______________________________
PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
September 11, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman; Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Cheryl Killam, GCD; Brian Giles; Patricia Goodridge; Shari Colby, DRED; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Carol Barleon, OEP; Representative Duncan Chaplin

Members Absent: Jacquie Colburn, DES; Dick Smith; Paul Blizzard; B. David Bryan; David Barrett, DOS; Senator John T. Gallus; Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Dave Mikolaities, NHFG; Jared Teutsch; Derek Durbin; and Denise Segault

*****************************************************************************
MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen MacNeil called the meeting to order at 9:05 a.m.

Chairman's Comments

The meeting began with Chairman MacNeil stating that the reason he had for resigning had gone away as his brother-in-law is doing much better. He did state, however, that this meeting would be his last as Chairman. A letter was sent to Governor Lynch requesting that Tom Quarles be appointed Chairman. Tom will begin acting in that capacity immediately following this meeting.

Chairman MacNeil also gave the board an update on Roger Bellerose. Apparently he is doing well, with speech having returned, however, he still cannot move his legs and has much rehabilitation ahead. We all wish him well.

Chairman MacNeil then asked to board to join him in a moment of silent prayer in honor of the fifth anniversary of the tragedy of September 11, 2001.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the June 19, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman

Cheryl Killam requested the following corrections to the minutes:
On page two, Item #2 - Webster Farm - Cheryl requested that in line 4 of paragraph 3 the words "handicap accessibility" be changed to "wheelchair accessibility."

Tom Quarles moved to approve the minutes of June 19, 2006 as amended; seconded by Carol Barleon. The Board approved, with Maynard Goldman and Patricia Goodridge abstaining. Tom questioned the status of making the approved minutes available online. Ellen stated that the minutes are now posted, beginning with January 2006. To access them from the Fish and Game website simply follow the links to the PWAAB webpage and the minutes are listed there by month.
2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Daniel Lynch, NHFG

Dan stated that the working group met at Water Street for a project status update. The contract extension for Hong Environmental has been submitted to G&C for approval so that they can complete their work. 95% plan submittals have been received and reviewed by NHFG staff, as well as the Winnipesauke River Basin Program, NHDES, and comments have been returned to Fay, Spofford, & Thorndike (FST). A cost estimate for the project is underway at this time as well. Dan further stated that Wetlands and Site Specific Permit applications are being completed by FST at this time. 100% plan submittals are expected within the next few weeks. Dan hopes the project can be put out to bid this fall/early winter for construction early in the spring.

As the Governor and his Council are meeting at Laconia City Hall this month, the hope is that they will have time to visit the Water Street site following their meeting.

Brian Giles requested an explanation of the Senator Johnson letters sent to all board members. Chairman MacNeil explained as follows: A constituent had called various board members regarding contamination at the Water Street site, and followed up with Senator Johnson when he felt answers were not satisfactory. Chairman MacNeil stated that there is no contamination on this site, other than that noted inside the digester building, which has been blocked off to prevent access. The constituent noted that there was possible contamination from a tank buried at the lumberyard, which was sending a plume towards the site. Chairman MacNeil further noted that the City of Laconia or an abutting landowner put in a testing well that is checked monthly to monitor the situation. No contamination from the lumber yard has traveled to the access site.

Dunc Chaplin noted that he had received an email from this constituent asking that several board members meet him onsite to discuss the situation. Although Dunc could not make it at the scheduled time, he did take the time to visit the site and become familiar with the area and the issues associated with it.

Patricia Goodridge questioned what the constituent's point really was. She at first thought it was to block access to the lake but has since found that is not the case, the constituent is simply of the opinion that Ahern State Park was the better choice of sites. Chairman MacNeil stated that this constituent is an employee of the state, working at the NHFG complex and that he has invited him to attend these meetings, which has not happened to date. Chairman MacNeil further stated that we would not be putting any contaminated soil under the parking lot, as that is not how we build access sites. Patricia then asked Dan to provide an explanation of Fish and Game's position regarding contamination onsite, which he briefly provided.

Tom questioned what NHFG has done to continue accessibility at Martel's in the interim. Dan noted that NHFG leases a portion of a parking lot adjacent to Martel's for 42 vehicles and trailers, and will continue to do so as necessary. There were questions regarding All in One Storage not complying with the terms of the lease, which have since been resolved. The major issue seems to be the fees charged for access by Martel's even though they are parking elsewhere.

Chairman MacNeil stated for Patricia's benefit that the board had looked into building an access at Ahern State Park and that he had received a letter from NHDRED stating that under no circumstances would they entertain putting in a trailer boat access point at the park. He also stated that there had been legislation after that that required a boat access on the site. Dan noted that the City Council of Laconia had voted in July 2002 that they did not want motorized boat access at that site, citing issues with sewer lines in the area and high bacteria counts in the water along the shore. It was determined that in order to provide access in a timely manner, that the Water Street site would be used. Dan further stated that he felt it would be irresponsible on the part of the Department to change direction now.

Patricia questioned whether canoe/kayak access is available at Ahern State Park, and was told that yes, it is available. Patricia further noted that she would like the board to pursue improved non-powered boating access throughout the state. This could perhaps be as simple as putting up signs noting access points. Dan recommended sending this issue to the Ahern State Park Advisory Committee, and Chairman MacNeil stated he would contact the chair of this committee to follow up.

Dunc Chaplin noted that the real root of the matter is inadequate boat access on Lake Winnisquam and that legislation is being looked at to provide public access at Ahern State Park. The argument is that it is a good investment, in the long run, for the state to undertake the development of an access at the Ahern Park site. Dunc stated that the Water Street site would not solve the problem of inadequate access to the lake.

3. Webster Farm Conservation Project Update - Daniel Lynch, NHFG

The package for this conservation easement was signed off on by the Director and was sent to Governor and Council for their September 13, 2006 meeting. Tom questioned how the public would be notified regarding availability of this site, and questioned signage. Dan stated he was unsure how that would be handled but that he would follow up. As Dan had to leave for a meeting with the Director, he stated he would come back with further information later in the meeting.

As Dan did not make it back before the end of the meeting, this item will be moved to the October meeting agenda.

4. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review - Tom Quarles

Tom sent letters to CORD on behalf of the board opposing the following two items: Town of Meredith SLR 06-006 - Property owners, Paul & Emilette Beaudoin; and City of Laconia SLR 06-007. CORD voted not to approve item SLR 06-006, which was in line with the board's position, as well as the earlier Belmont request, which was discussed in June. Tom reported that CORD had not yet discussed the City of Laconia request (SLR-06-007).

Tom noted one new proposal since the last meeting. The newest proposal is for NHDOT owned land in Plymouth, adjacent to the Pemigewasset River (SP-P4600H Plymouth/Logan). Currently, this land is being leased by the Common Man Restaurant, a portion is used for parking, with the remainder left as undeveloped land along the riverfront. NHDOT generally is trying to dispose of unnecessary land after completing highway projects and is therefore looking to surplus this parcel. The Rivers Management Advisory Committee (RMAC) conditionally approved disposal of this parcel. Unfortunately, this process began in May but this board was not notified at that time. Tom will follow up to determine exactly what the RMAC conditions are so the item can be discussed at the October meeting.

Chairman MacNeil noted that this parcel is just a small wedge right beside Route 3 and the Common Man Restaurant. This parcel is actually between the Pemigewasset River and the Baker River, although neither one is readily accessible from this parcel. To access the Baker River you'd have to cross Route 3, and to access the Pemigewasset you must pass under the interstate. This parcel is heavily used during the winter months by snow-mobilers. Allen does not feel this parcel is worth pursuing for public access as he feels it would be too dangerous to access either river from this site.

Mike Pillsbury commented on behalf of NHDOT. The Department is looking to surplus this parcel, which was most likely purchased when the interstate was built. Mike noted that there may be interest from NHDRED, Bureau of Trails. Shari will follow up from the NHDRED perspective. Mike will follow up on the status of this item so that it may be discussed in October.

Carol Barleon questioned taking a more holistic view regarding the surplus of state properties. Tom noted that in an earlier conversation with Jared Teutsch, Jared told him that the Lakes Association had sponsored legislation for a moratorium on leasing of state owned railroad land along water-bodies, which was defeated. However, the Association plans to try again this year with new legislation requesting a study commission. At this point Derek Durbin, the new Lakes Association Legislative Representative, introduced himself and spoke briefly about the proposed legislation.

5. 2005 Annual Report -Tom Quarles

Chairman MacNeil urged board members to begin preparing their 2006 reports at this time. Please use the calendar year whenever possible for your reports.

Tom stated that he has questions for NHDRED and NHDES, but that since Jacquie Colburn is not available at this time, he will send his questions to her before next month so a more detailed discussion can be had in October.
Tom's questions for NHDRED relate to Dodge Pond in Lyman and acquisition of the Fall Mountain State Forest. Shari Colby and Carol Baleon filled the board in on the Dodge Pond reconstruction. This waterbody is in the Upper Connecticut Valley. Shari will find out about the "Fall Mountain State Forest" and report to the board. Tom urged anyone with questions regarding the 2005 Annual Report to bring them forth next meeting.

Patricia Goodridge questioned whether new maps had been printed since she last attended a meeting. Tom noted that all of that information is available interactively online now. Patricia stated that she would like to see more signs at access sites. The problem is that NHFG is not likely to purchase signs for non-NHFG sites.

Patricia also noted that she would like to see more information/reporting on wheelchair accessible sites. Cheryl Killam noted that she does not report on sites unless she has actually been there herself to check accessibility. Tom noted that this issue as well as increased signage, are among the long term projects the board will need to address. Carol Barleon stated that she is currently following up with municipalities regarding accessible sites. Cheryl noted that there are specific questions that can be asked of municipalities in order to ensure sites are accessible. Tom questioned if Carol was gathering information regarding which sites may have been purchased with Land and Water Conservation Funds. Carol was not sure whether or not this information is available on the OEP database. Tom questioned this due to historical issues with towns designating properties as open to residents only which is against the rules when using these funds. Shari noted that NHDRED currently verifies this information, but mostly only for baseball parks and similar recreational fields. Tom suggested that this information be made part of the agencies' annual reports.

6. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

As Dan had not yet returned to the meeting, Dave Mikolaities, Land Resources Supervisor gave a very brief update on a few of the projects currently underway. An updated Boat Access Site Status Matrix was provided to the board with further updates noted in red.

1. Millsfield Pond (Millsfield) - Dave reported that repairs had begun at the Millsfield access site the first week in September (and have since been completed).

2. Cedar Pond (Milan) - Repairs are scheduled to take place during the first week of October.

3. Umbagog Lake (Cambridge) - Repairs are scheduled to take place during the second week of October.

4. Baxter Lake (Rochester) - Construction is being completed by NHDES's Dam Bureau.

5. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Wetlands permit received from NHDES. Bids for tree cutting and pavement of the parking area will be put out this fall for Spring 2007 repairs.

Cheryl Killam requested that NHFG provide information regarding accessibility of sites. Dave stated that he would keep her informed when new construction or repairs occurs.

Patricia Goodridge questioned the issue of Onway Lake losing an access site at the Boy Scout Camp. Dave was not aware of the situation.

Brian Giles questioned the progress at Hilton Park. Michael Pillsbury stated that NHDOT is still waiting for approval of the wetlands permit before work can begin.

Maynard Goldman stated that the Boat Access Site Status Matrix was very helpful and he was very much appreciative of the update.

7. Update on Harilla's Landing - Tom Quarles

Tom stated that Attorney Cronin for the Yacht Club had talked to himm prior to Cronin meeting with Paul Goodwin, the contractor's representative, to discuss the wetland's permit for dock reconstruction and other Phase One proposals. Attorney Cronin was also to meet with NHDOT regarding the land swap. Work could begin on Phase One as soon as Spring 2007. Tom invited any interested members to join him on the Harilla's Landing subcommittee. Tom will follow up on progress at the October meeting.
Carol Barleon stated that it appears we've made much progress this year on this project.

Other Items for Board Consideration

Cheryl Killam noted that the City of Concord had an issue brewing. The City is installing temporary floating docks at the Everett Arena Boat Ramp. The Concord 20/20 group is attempting to put in an access to the docks that are wheelchair accessible, however, the bank to the river is very steep. The ground cannot be disturbed more than six inches due to buried waste in the area. The GCD is working with the Concord 20/20 group and NHDES to come up with some alternative, and a waiver for the accessibility requirement is pending. Cheryl will keep the board informed.

Tom noted that he and Chairman MacNeil had been contacted by City Councilor, Ken Field of Franklin, regarding a city boat ramp in need of repair. The Town is requesting help from the PWAAB in funding/completing repairs. Rich Tichko had investigated the matter but Dave was unsure of the outcome. The matter will put discussed further at the October meeting.

Tom noted that NHFG had added depth maps for some of the water-bodies in the state. From the NHFG homepage, click on the link for "Fishing" and scroll down to the link for the depth maps.

Chairman MacNeil questioned if or when the access maps would be reproduced. Dave Mikolaities has looked into the matter in conjunction with the GIS initiative, but is unsure if funding is available. Patricia Goodridge noted that since NH agencies and businesses are interested in promoting tourism in NH, they would possibly help to fund this project. Derek Durbin of the Lakes Association stated that he has been contacted by a company looking to produce such a map of New Hampshire, and is looking for information to put on such a map.

Dave Mikolaities noted that due to damage caused by the May flooding, several towns have come forward asking for help to repair boat access sites. Allenstown and Newmarket have both contacted NHFG, as well as Franklin as described above.

Public Comment - None at this time

Adjournment

Maynard Goldman moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Patricia Goodridge. The Board unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:43 a.m.

The next meeting will take place on October 2, 2006 at 9:00 a.m. in the East/West Conference Room at Fish and Game Headquarters in Concord, N.H.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
July 10, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman; Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Cheryl Killam, GCD; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Dick Smith; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Carol Barleon, OEP; Representative Duncan Chaplin; Senator Joseph D. Kenney

Members Absent: Paul Blizzard; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; B. David Bryan; Brian Giles; David Barrett, DOS; Patricia Goodridge; Senator John T. Gallus; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Charles Bridges, NHFG; and Dave Mikolaities, NHFG


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MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen MacNeil called the meeting to order at 9:12 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the June 19, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman

Jacquie Colburn requested the following corrections to the minutes:
On page two, Item #3, first sentence, correct spelling of Winnesquam to "Winnisquam."
On page three, first paragraph, 5th line, change LMAC to "RMAC;" and in the second paragraph, 3rd line, delete "just north of" Meredith, N.H.

Johanna Lyons requested the following change to page 1 under Members Present:
For the sake of consistency remove "NH Bass Federation" after Dick Smith. With the exception of State agency representatives, the only one nominated as representing an Association would be Maynard Goldman of the NHLA. Those representing public interests will be listed by name only.

Carol Barleon moved to approve the minutes of June 19, 2006 as amended; seconded by Mike Pillsbury. The Board unanimously approved.

Chairman's Comments

Tom Quarles questioned whether the Board would like to meet in August or take the month off as has been done the last several years. No members objected and the next meeting was confirmed for September 11, 2006.

Chairman MacNeil reported to the board that this would be his last meeting as Chairman as he is resigning due to family health issues. Allen encouraged all to continue the good works of this board and thanked all for working with him over the years.


2. Webster Farm Conservation Project Presentation - Charlie Bridges, NHFG

Charlie gave a brief presentation regarding this site's history and recent efforts to preserve this agricultural land for future generations. The buildings will be kept as a separate parcel with the land being held under conservation easement and farmed by the Fife family who also owns an abutting farm. There will be public carry in access to the river maintained under this agreement. Parking will be available at the cemetery with a walk of about 1,500 feet necessary to access the river. The total cost of the project is estimated at $2.5 million with only $100,000 of Fish and Game funds being contributed.

Tom Quarles brought forth a motion regarding access as follows:
* Original - Request that NHFG pursue modifying easement for future use of this access site to allow vehicles to drive as close as possible to shore to drop off a non-motorized boat and return to the parking area at the cemetery.

Discussion regarding access at this site ensued. There was concern that the walk required would be an impediment to use of this site. Johanna Lyons stated that the walk to the river should be seen as part of the experience and is not necessarily an impediment to access. The question of wheelchair accessibility was also discussed, although the details of this are still being worked out at this time. Johanna reminded the board that this is not an access project, but a conservation project with an access component. Therefore, public access has already been secured. Charlie Bridges stated that the easement language is pretty well established and he is not sure the landowner would be willing to make changes at this point. The landowner does not want motorized vehicles passing over the agricultural lands causing damage. Dan Lynch felt that as a small player in this project we had done well to maintain the access as it stands.

Tom Quarles questioned why the board had not been notified of this project at an earlier date. Dan responded that final information was not available until Fish and Game Commission approval on June 21, 2006. Tom also questioned whether Fish and Game would have any ongoing responsibilities regarding signage or maintenance at this site. Dan stated that as we do not have an ownership interest in this property we would not have responsibility for signs and maintenance. Charlie noted that we would not be involved unless there were issues in which case the Department's Law Enforcement Division would become involved. Tom stated this is all the more reason to try to get access closer to the river now rather than later.
Dick Smith questioned the safety of the current on this portion of the river and was assured that the flow was slow enough to be safe for canoes and kayaks at this site.
Senator Kenney questioned the categories of access sites, to which Dan responded that there are several different types, from ownership by other state agencies, such as DRED and DOT, to road to public waters sites that are maintained by the towns.

Tom amended his earlier motion to read as follows:
* Amended - Request that NHFG pursue either modifying the easement language to allow boats to be dropped off at or near the shore-bank with parking only at the cemetery; or that a similar provision be explored in the conservation plan dealing with general public access at this site.
Both the original and amended motion were seconded by Johanna Lyons. The Board voted on the amended motion unanimously in the affirmative, with Dan Lynch abstaining from the vote.


3. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Jacquie Colburn asked Dan to provide the update as at this point in the project planning process Fish and Game is carrying the majority of the workload. However, she did state that Fish and Game had provided 60% plan submissions to NHDES for review and comment, which should be completed by the end of the week. Jacquie also reported she had visited the site and that the butler buildings had been removed but that the foundations were still being pulled out and demolished in order to recycle the rebar. Hong Environmental was not on site due to water problems at the site disrupting the process. Dan stated that comments on the 60% plan submission had been provided to FST. Dan introduced Dave Mikolaities, Lands Bureau Supervisor who had completed the plan review and response. FST had guaranteed a two-week turn around time for +/- 90% plan submission.

Dunc Chaplin reported that he had received a call over the weekend questioning why the site had not been completed yet. Several other board members, including Senator Kenney, had also received such phone calls recently. Dunc suggested that Fish and Game provide a press release regarding progress on the site to let the public know what progress has been made to date. Johanna added that perhaps a notice could be posted onsite with this information, as DRED does, so those in the area with questions would have access to the information. Dan had reservations regarding a press release as he felt some who oppose the project could possibly drag out or stonewall the process. Senator Kenney suggested it might be helpful to post the minutes of these meetings online so they would be accessible to the general public.

4. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review - Tom Quarles

Town of Meredith SLR 06-006 - Property owners, Paul & Emilette Beaudoin, are looking for access across the rail corridor, for the purpose of constructing a dock on Lake Waukewan. Tom noted that both the Selectmen of the Town of Meredith and the Meredith Conservation Commission have recommended to CORD that this lease not be granted. Jacquie Colburn stated that the LMAC had also voted 6 -3 to recommend against leasing according to their criteria. As documented in their letter to CORD, some of their concerns are as follows: disturbance of existing vegetative cover; water quality, to include conductivity levels increasing, oxygen levels decreases, phosphorous loading, and toxic algae blooms documented in the area; this area also falls within the zone of concern of a buffer area for the common loon; and Lake Waukewan serves as the public water supply for part of the Town of Meredith. There is also concern that granting this 75' lease could lead to the granting of other leases on the 1750' of frontage along the lake, which would have a cumulative effect on the environment that has not been fully investigated. Based on this information and ensuing discussion, Tom Quarles made a motion to oppose the lease of this property, due to the fact that public access is readily available in close proximity and that there does not appear to be any public benefit to granting this lease. Johanna Lyons recommend that the motion be amended to include a request for a comprehensive study of this process, including the issue of fragmenting currently undeveloped shorefront and riverfront property, so the board would have a broader view of the true impacts of granting these leases; the motion was seconded by Dick Smith. The board voted on the motion, unanimously in the affirmative, with Mike Pillsbury of NHDOT abstaining from the vote.

Dick Smith commented to the board that "pieces" of fishing available to the public are being taken away by the granting of these leases to private or commercial entities. Dick also noted that in his opinion the $25 per foot to lease these properties is not enough and that any money collected from granting such leases should be used to improve public access.

City of Laconia SLR 06-007 - This is a request for commercial development of the rail corridor by Gerald Stevens for Scenic Ledges Condominiums. Tom Quarles noted that this request is the third purely commercial request made in this area, the first being Eighteen Mile Point, the second being the pending lease on Lake Winnisquam in Belmont. According to RSA 228:57-a, these leases are only for private use, and so this statute was not meant to benefit commercial enterprises but private individuals. Tom proposes recommending to CORD that this lease does not meet the statutory requirement for private use; the motion was seconded by Carol Barleon. Senator Kenney questioned whether Tom was happy with the statute (228:57-a), to which Tom responded that yes, overall he thought the statute was adequate. However, Tom noted that perhaps the statute does deserve some focus and should be studied by the legislature. Mike Pillsbury questioned the definition of "commercial" according to the statute. He felt it would be helpful to get this clarified should the legislature address this statute. The board voted on the motion, unanimously in the affirmative, with Mike Pillsbury of NHDOT abstaining from the vote.

5. PWAAB Priority List & GIS Mapping Initiative - Daniel R. Lynch

Board members received an updated version of the 1995 PWAAB Priority Listing and a draft Boat Access Site Status GIS Mapping display. These were created in conjunction with the goals of the Public Access Plan for NH's Lakes, Ponds and Rivers. Dan discussed the recommended public access planning standards for great ponds and the recommended public access to rivers, which states that there should be one access for each 10 miles of navigable river. Existing sites were placed on a map of the state, color coded by state agency and type so that we can easily see where more access sites are needed. At this point, maintenance crews are verifying information regarding sites to ensure the legend for the map is correct. Once complete, this mapping information will be provided to board members so they can assist in ensuring sites where access is needed are identified. Knowing what opportunities exist will help to provide direction for the board. Further information regarding town or private owned facilities is available from the Office of Energy and Planning. The more comprehensive the information included on the map, the more useful it will be in drawing tourists and visitors to sport fishing in NH. The board felt the goal should be to have this information available to the public via an interactive website at a future date. Johanna Lyons mentioned that a subcommittee had been convened to verify this information in the past and that perhaps it should reconvene. At this time the OEP is asking towns to verify information to be included on an access map. Dan hopes that the board can help in determining new priorities for boat access sites as sites are removed from the priority list once the project is completed.

6. 2005 Annual Report -Tom Quarles

Tom decided that in the interest of time, this item will be deferred to September's meeting. He will send his questions to the applicable agencies in the interim so a more detailed discussion can be had in September.

7. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Dan gave a very brief update on a few of the projects currently underway and an updated boat access site project matrix was provided to the board.

1. Merrymeeting (New Durham) - Dan attended the Lake Association's annual meeting to discuss concerns. Dan stated that plans are +/- 95% complete and hope to move forward with this project soon. The waterline replacement project is also moving forward.

2. Sunapee - Wild Goose (Newbury) - Director Perry will be following up with the Governor's office regarding this site. The issue of the interface with Rte 103 and Birch Grove Road has been sent to NHDOT for another review and clarification.

8. Update on Harilla's Landing - Tom Quarles

The subcommittee met last month to review a conceptual plan/proposal provided by the marine contractor's representative, Paul Goodwin. The plan consists of three phases. The first phase only will consist of: rehabilitation and repair of existing facilities; permitting; and a land swap to clear up encroachment issues, which will include involvement by NHDOT. Comments should be directed to Tom Quarles, and this item will be placed on the September agenda for further discussion.

9. Legislative Update - Tom Quarles

Tom wanted to ensure that board members were informed that CORD is now advisory only to Governor and Council, with no veto authority on surplus land issues. Earlier legislation from last session had taken away CORD's veto authority on disposal of state property purchased with state or federal highway funds.

Other Items for Board Consideration

Carol Barleon questioned if further information was available on the condition of Roger Bellerose, Sr. who had been injured while on vacation in Ireland. Chairman MacNeil stated that he had tried to get an update but had been unsuccessful in reaching the family. He will continue to pursue this information and make board members aware.

Tom Quarles took this opportunity to present Chairman Allen MacNeil with a Certificate Of Appreciation for his leadership, service and dedication to this board and to the citizens of New Hampshire seeking public access to all of NH's lakes, rivers, and seacoast.

Tom further stated that Allen had joined the Board in 1993, the first year of its existence, as the Board Member representing power boating interests. From the beginning, Allen took an active role in the Board's meetings and projects; always volunteering to investigate and work on any proposal that could provide access in the Lakes region. He was elected to the State House of Representatives in November 1994 representing Plymouth. Allen became a member of the House Wildlife and Marine Resources Committee and rose to that Committee's Vice-Chairmanship in 1999. He also became that Committee's member designated to serve on this Board. Allen was the Board's liaison with the House and kept the Board apprised of all legislative developments affecting public water access.

In 2004, Allen was approached by Governor Benson to return to this Board as Chairman and to revive this Board and its work, which had gone unattended since 2002. Allen agreed to take on this challenge and has brought this Board back to prominence within the state and within state government. He has unwaveringly supported public water access, including reviving the decade-old process to develop the Wild Goose site on Lake Sunapee. He was one of the first leaders to recognize the opportunity for a large lake access site for Lake Winnesquam at the DES facility in Laconia, a project that is now well on its way to completion. He has continued to be a champion for public water access for the Plymouth area and the Pemigewassett River.

Public Comment - None at this time

Adjournment -- Tom Quarles moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Carol Barleon. The Board unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:36 a.m.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
June 19, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman; Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Paul Blizzard; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Shari Colby for Johanna Lyons, DRED; Dick Smith; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Carol Barleon, OEP; B. David Bryan, Rep.; Duncan Chaplin;

Members Absent: Cheryl Killam; Brian Giles; David Barrett, DOS; Patricia Goodridge; Senator John T. Gallus, Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: Todd Baldwin; Wen Baldwin; Louis Barker, DOT; Brian Lombard, DOT; and Don McGinley

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MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen MacNeil called the meeting to order at 9:06 a.m.

Chairman MacNeil told the Board about Roger Bellerose, Sr. who had been in an accident while vacationing in Ireland. At this time he is at Massachusetts General Hospital in critical condition. A card was sent around the room for all to sign and was mailed to his home.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the May 1, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Tom Quarles requested the following correction to the minutes:
On page two and all successive pages the date in the header should be changed from April 3 to May 1. Tom noted that the minutes were very well done and easy to follow.

Carol Barleon moved to approve the minutes of May 1, 2006 as amended; seconded by Tom Quarles. The Board unanimously approved.

Chairman MacNeil then asked the members of the audience to introduce themselves, which they did.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Chairman MacNeil brought to the Board's attention a Winnisquam Lake Boat Access Project Proposed Timeline, provided by Dan Lynch. Please note that this timeline is for discussion purposes only and is not a final document. The projects target completion date is August 2007.

Jacquie Colburn stated that there had been a working group meeting recently at the project site where this timeline had been reviewed. Jacquie thought the timeline was very helpful to see what has already been done at the site and also to see just how much still needs to be done and give a sense of how everything has to come together. Everyone is excited to see this site constructed. It should be noted that this timeline begins with March 2006, but the project actually began in August 2004. Jacquie will try to compose a timeline from August 2004 through March 2006 as well showing all the work that has already gone into, or generally goes into, the construction of an access site. At the working group meeting Dan also showed the group a slightly modified plan of the site.

Dan Lynch offered the following update on the site as well: Dan showed the Board the modified plan as presented to the working group. The major points covered were as follows:

  • Parking lot and staging area
  • A 3-4 foot retaining wall to maintain an area about 14 feet wide, which is part of the fence line separating the boat access facility from the Winnipesaukee River Basin Treatment Facility.
  • A settling basin, 1 1/2 to 2 feet deep to handle storm water retention to meet site-specific requirements.
  • Slight modification to allow for a river walk, which goes along the river in that section of the city, to fit in with that concept and match the design and image across the river at Martel's.
  • Design provides means to maintain existing floodway capacity, which is required by FEMA. It also allows for an increase in the river channel due to dredging.
  • Fully handicapped accessible pier in the middle, between the other ramps and seasonal docks.
  • Changes in grade to keep storm water runoff from Water Street from entering the settling area and the river.
  • 31 parking spots for vehicles with trailers, 5 car-top sites and 2 for law enforcement.

The 60% plan submissions are due by June 26, with a five-week turnaround time for review by NHFG and FST. NHFG will be working with the Department of Administrative Services, Bureau of Public Works because of the cost of the project. According to the timeline, a Federal Aid Grant proposal will be submitted by late summer to help with the cost of the project.

Chairman MacNeil opened the discussion up for questions. Tom Quarles questioned what the dollar amount is that triggers Public Works involvement. Dan responded that the amount is $250,000, and this project is estimated at about 1.2 million to complete. Jacquie Colburn informed the Board that the greenhouse structures were in the process of being removed and progress was being made on getting the foundations for those structures removed as well.
Chairman MacNeil stated that when the opening ceremony of the site is held, hopefully in August of 2007, that all Board members would be invited.

3. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review - Tom Quarles
Tom Quarles discussed briefly the Belmont parcel where a developer is looking to lease the railroad corridor for access to Lake Winnisquam to provide dockage for a private development. Tom questions whether the employees of NHDOT Rail and Transit were in the audience to answer questions about this matter, as well as the Hobo Railroad site. Brian Lombard stated that they would be happy to answer any questions the Board may have.

Before jumping into the general issue of leasing state owned property for dockage, Tom decided to talk about two new state surplus land reviews that CORD had asked PWAAB to review and provide its recommendations.

Foster & Colburn State Forest, Wentworth - a local snowmobile club, in the Baker River valley, is looking to formalize a lease for a temporary clubhouse and maintenance building located on the state snowmobile trail, corridor 5, and the state forest, adjacent to the south branch of the Baker River. Tom asked Jacquie if there had been any discussion at either the RMAC or the LMAC. Jacquie responded that the RMAC would be meeting the next day and that this issue should not be of any concern to the board. Tom agreed that it should not be a problem and questioned whether the board should put the issue to a formal vote or if we should let our inaction serve as tacit agreement. Carol Barleon stated she did not feel comfortable voting on the issue without having more information. Paul Blizzard agreed. Tom restated that the clubhouse is already there and that the club is just looking to formalize their existing squatters rights. It was agreed that the board would defer taking a position on the matter at this time.

Lake Waukewan, Meredith - Tom noted that this matter is a bit more controversial as it involves another proposed railroad dock lease. The CORD review is requested by an individual landowner (Beaudoin) who owns property on Lake Waukewan, Meredith, N.H. There is an existing rail line that follows the south shore of the lake. The landowners would like to create a pedestrian crossing of the railroad line to build and access a dock. The railroad is under contract with Plymouth & Lincoln Railroad. There was discussion about exactly where this lot is located and whether other landowners would be requesting leases as well. This lot appears to be the only one of several in the immediate area that meets the requirements for leasing; Lou Barker thought this to be true also. Tom questioned whether the Bureau of Rail and Transit takes a position regarding this type of lease while pending, or if they simply forwarded the information on to various review agencies. Lou Barker stated that his bureau's rail operations engineer and rail safety officer first review the proposed lease to ensure there are no hazards to rail operations and to establish one safe pedestrian crossing of the rail line. If that can be done, their bureau forwards the proposal for review by the other agencies. This location has already been through that safety screening by NHDOT. Brian Lombard stated that the only requests the bureau rejects are those where the landowner does not have legal access to a crossing or if the location is unsafe for a crossing.

Tom Quarles had a few general questions regarding leasing after reading the statutes. The first question was in regard to the $25 per linear foot per year fee associated with this type of lease. Is the lease rate based on the dock width or the entire length of the frontage? Lou Barker stated that the rate is based on frontage length, which must be at least 75 feet. If more frontage is owned the landowner would be charged for the extra only at their request.

The second question Tom raised was in regards to the "one point of access across the rail" statute, with regards to the CORD review for the Belmont property, and whether the request was consistent with this requirement. Lou Barker explained that the crossing would be at one point and then would open up to access points to the lake from there. Brian Lombard added that the requested crossing at that site was for pedestrian traffic only as boats would be launched elsewhere and only docked at this site.

The final question was in regards to the 5-year review of these leases, part of which includes cost and the current stated price of $25 per linear foot. How has this issue been addressed in the past? Lou Barker stated that in the past, when a price increase has been put into effect, the landowner is notified of the new price at the review and that any lease renewal will take place at the new cost. This has happened at lease twice in the past when the legislature has raised the lease rate. This statute does not allow a higher charge than what the legislature has put into place. Dan Lynch stated that he thought the legislature had recently passed an increase to $125 per linear foot. Chairman MacNeil questioned Dunc Chaplin on the issue, but Dunc was unable to verify any change in the statute.

Carol Barleon questioned whether these requests for leases go through the town for approval so that the town could do their own safety check of the area to ensure new hazards are not being created. Lou Barker stated that in fact they did and that the Town of Meredith had contacted NHDOT with questions on the Lake Waukewan lease request.

Dick Smith questioned what statute was being discussed. Tom stated the statute is RSA 228:57-a Leasing Certain Portions of Railroad Properties, enacted effective May 6, 1994, and amended 1997 and again in 2001.

Dick Smith did not feel comfortable making a judgment on this or any other site without a better understanding of whether said waterfront should be used as a public access for shore fishing, etc.

Tom Quarles questioned whether Lake Winnipesaukee was the only lake on which a permanent dock structure could be constructed. Jacquie Colburn stated that permanent structures could be located on other water-bodies as well, other than just docks. Dock length rules were changed so that docks could be as long as necessary to get to 3 feet of water. It was noted that NHDES is the agency that permits docks, not NHDOT, and so permit requests must be submitted to NHDES prior to construction of any dock, even when the land is leased from the state. Access across the rail lines does not automatically grant the right to construct a dock.

Tom Quarles asked whether the board would like to make a decision on this CORD review. Carol Barleon again stated she was not comfortable making a decision without further information.

Jacquie Colburn questioned the RSA regarding trespass on rail lines. If such a statute is in place, why do people use them as snowmobile trails and such? Brian Lombard stated that in the winter the rail lines are turned over to DRED for use as snowmobile trails from January 1, through early March because the lines are not in use by the trains at that time of year. Brian gave Chairman MacNeil several articles relating to injuries caused by the inappropriate use of rail lines. It is unsafe to have mixed use of the rail corridor. Tom questioned the standard right of way of rail lines. Brian stated that the amount of right of way varies between 18 feet to as much as 50 feet on each side of the track according to location and use of the particular line. Because some rail lines run close to the waters edge, Jacquie questioned whether someone anchoring near the rail lines and then swimming in to shore would be trespassing. Brian stated that technically, yes, they would be trespassing but that NHDOT has not had any issues with that happening to their knowledge. NHDOT is more concerned with people trespassing on the non-lake side of the rail lines. Jacquie questioned who should be responsible for notifying homeowners of the one spot that is allowed to cross the tracks. Mike Pillsbury noted that during the permit process these issues would be addressed and the requestor could be required to post signs and fence off the area to allow crossing only at the permitted site.

Tom questioned whether the LMAC had reviewed the Lake Waukewan request. Jacquie stated not yet, that they would be meeting on Friday, June 23rd.

Jacquie questioned pedestrian and fisherman traffic on rail lines in her area, stating that the general public probably does not know they are not supposed to be there. Chairman MacNeil questioned why signs are not posted. Brian Lombard stated that signs are posted in some areas but that to have them all along the rail lines would be impossible. Those that are posted are often ignored, vandalized or torn down and NHDOT does try to keep up but it is sometimes a losing battle.

Tom questioned again the possibility of public access at the Lake Waukewan site. Town owned land, lot 25, is adjacent to this lot, however, it is not accessible by boat from the lake, and therefore would not be suitable for a public access point. Jacquie will be going out and looking at the site prior to the LMAC meeting on Friday and will report back to the board with her findings. It was decided the board would conduct a vote on these CORD items via email after the next LMAC meeting but before the CORD's next meeting on July 6th. [This has not happened as the CORD meeting has been moved to later in July, giving the PWAAB time to discuss and vote on this Lake Waukewan proposal at PWAAB's next meeting on July 10, 2006.] Tom feels that email votes are problematic, but Dan stated that the F&G Commission has conducted email votes in the past with ratification at the next publicly noticed meeting.

Jacquie noted as an FYI, that the Route 3 NHDOT right of way in Holderness, was brought to the attention of the LMAC but there is no water access involved.

Proposed Developer's Dock Lease on Winnesquam, Belmont, N.H.
Dan questioned the Belmont lease on Lake Winnesquam. The town is looking to build a bike/pedestrian path parallel to the rail corridor. How does it work given that in that environment there will be a pedestrian crossing with a path paralleling on the inland side? Brian Lombard stated that the town and the developer had agreed to move the trail onto developer's property; the easement would be going to the town. Dan questioned the interaction of the trail with the rail crossing and the issue of the trail beside the tracks. NHDOT has worked with several towns in the area in developing other portions of the trail. NHDOT sets criteria such as 15 feet clearance from the centerline of the tracks, 5-foot high chain link fencing, stopping the fencing only at crossings to allow for vehicle or pedestrian traffic and then continuing fencing after the crossing. This prohibits anyone accessing the trail from crossing the tracks and therefore trespassing where it is unsafe. They also require the towns to be responsible for drainage and maintenance issues as well. NHDOT is trying to develop the trail in a way that will not interfere with future activation of the rail line. Mike Pillsbury stated that communication between agencies is paramount. There are different interests that are overseen by different agencies. NHDOT by statute must have a provision to enable the lease of the properties, and impacts of access to the shorefront and lake are governed by NHDES.
As Jacquie stated, at the site in Belmont, there is a well-vegetated strip of land near where the developer is proposing to place the docking structure, and so they will need to comply with the Shoreline Protection Act managed by NHDES. Dan questioned whether DOT railroad crossing lease provisions state that the proposed dock owner must comply with the Shoreline Protection Act or any Endangered Species acts or only have provisions relative to safe rail crossings. Brian Lombard stated that all NHDOT regulates are the safe rail crossing concerns. Jacquie noted that some Endangered Species concerns may be addressed by NHDES's Wetlands Bureau.

4. Hobo Railroad - NHDOT
Mike Pillsbury of NHDOT spoke regarding this site. The NHDOT Bureau of Environment is taking the lead, working with the Bureau of Rail and Transit to provide pedestrian access to the Pemigewasett River at this site. Some fencing will probably be put into place to secure access to pedestrians only as the site is not suitable for vehicular traffic. Mike will keep the board apprised of progress.

Dick Smith questioned who had put up the "No Trespassing" signs at the Hobo Railroad site. Brian Lombard answered that he is unsure where they came from. He feels they were most likely put there to keep people out of the NHDOT gravel pit for safety reasons. Brian will have someone go out and check to make sure the site is accessible to fisherman. Brian also noted that during the summer months these tracks are in use and that anyone accessing the site should use caution. Audience member, Don McGinley, stated that he was the one who had seen the Hobo Railroad employees placing the signs and cable up to keep people out of the area. He feels that if the area is not going to be accessible to the public then NHFG should stop stocking trout in that section of the river. Dan addressed the stocking issue, stating that this portion of the river is still accessible by other avenues, but agreed that we should not be stocking if the site would not be available to fisherman.

Mike Pillsbury stated that the Hobo Railroad had gone above and beyond in placing the signs and cable there. The contract with Hobo Railroad states that public access is to be maintained at this site. NHDOT is working on this issue, and will try to develop, by summers end, a parking area there as well. The gate at the roadway should be removed and a gate placed at the edge of the rail corridor to ensure vehicular traffic does not cross the tracks. Mike Pillsbury stated that the property does not belong to the Hobo Railroad, they only lease the rail corridor, and the area in question is state property and that this item should no longer be described on the PWAAB Agenda as "Hobo Railroad" as it really is not their issue.

Tom Quarles questioned whether there was currently a gate stopping access? Brian stated that the gate was open the last time he was there, and that he had never seen it closed and locked. Tom also questioned winter use of the rail line by snowmobiles, and if so, should a parking area large enough for trailers be put in. Brian stated that yes, there is winter use by snowmobiles but that he would not recommend a parking area that size at this site as there are safety issues regarding pulling off of Rte 175 in this area, especially in winter. This property was purchased for and is reserved for future wetland developments and so it would not be a proper use of the property to develop it into a large parking area. Tom questioned whether the Hobo Railroad has a defined lease area. Brian stated that there is a lease agreement but that the property with the Polar Express building is not under lease through Hobo but through the company that runs the Polar Express, which is a different entity. Also, this land is owned by NHDOT's Bureau of Right of Way not the Bureau of Rail and Transit. The question of storage of materials on the site was also raised and Brian addressed it by stating that the materials are owned by NHDOT and are used to maintain the rail corridor.

Audience member, Todd Baldwin, spoke about the Exit 31 River Restoration Project that is currently in the implementation phase for approximately 2,900 feet of the Pemigewasset River in Woodstock. This is the area of the river that can be accessed from the Hobo Railroad site discussed above. The goals of the restoration project include stabilization of the river, reduction of bank erosion and land loss, enhancement of the in-stream and off-channel fisheries habitat, and restoration of a once spring-fed pond. For further information contact the Pemigewasset Chapter of Trout Unlimited, P.O. Box 1356, Campton, N.H. 03223.
Dick Smith questioned whether NHDES was able to expend funds for milfoil control only if there was a public access area. Jacquie and Maynard confirmed that there is a requirement of public access for funding to occur.

5. Harilla's Landing - Tom Quarles
Tom stated that there would be a Harilla's Landing subcommittee meeting immediately following this meeting. Anyone wishing to stay for the sub-committee meeting is welcome to do so.

6. Wild Goose - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil
Chairman MacNeil asked Dan Lynch to provide an update on progress at the Wild Goose access site. Dan stated that in mid April representatives from NHFG, FST and the Attorney General's Office met with the Town of Newbury, Board of Selectmen to go over site concept design and acceptable improvements for access to Rte 103 off of Birch Grove Road. A variety of other comments were discussed at the meeting as well. Governor Lynch will meet with Director Perry and Commissioner Bald of NHDRED regarding this location and access to Lake Sunapee.
Plans were discussed with NHDES and ACOE, both of whom made some suggestions regarding the site. Historical clearance has been received, and Phase I Hazard Assessment has been completed, with small amounts of asbestos siding being found on site that will need to be removed. The Department will most likely look toward further development of this site after the new fiscal year begins in July, although Dan was unsure when the meeting with the Governor would be taking place. Dick Smith asked what the real issue with this site is: whether it is access from Rte 103 or if people just don't want to see this access site developed. He also asked what is the likelihood of this site actually moving forward to completion? Dan responded that there is limited impact to the shorefront, we are looking to use existing geographic conditions onsite to our advantage, however, a stand of Red Pine trees will need to be removed to create a parking area, which is a concern but is allowable under the Shoreline Protection Act. The existing breakwater will need to be reconstructed as well. The ACOE asked for a stationary dock to be constructed on the south side of the ramp. In Dan's opinion the Town of Newbury will continue to fight to keep this site from being constructed, as they and the Lake Association believe we should use the site at the existing State Park beach rather than the currently selected site. In the last 15 years 12-13 sites around the lake have been looked at, however, the environmental impacts at alternate sites are much worse than at Wild Goose. Chairman MacNeil stated that NHFG owns the land and the Town of Newbury should just allow the site to be developed rather than continue fighting it.

7. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

1. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Remedial repairs are being made to the parking area. The wetland permit application has been received by NHDES and we are waiting to hear from them.

2. Lambert Park (Hooksett) - (Merrimack River) Wetlands permit has been sent to DES. Remedial repairs are being made at the site as recent flooding exacerbated existing damage.

3. Manning Lake (Gilmanton) - Permit application for Manning Lake will be submitted this week if it has not already been done.

4. Merrymeeting (New Durham) - Met onsite with abutting landowner and the Merrymeeting Lake Association to discuss the Powder Mill Hatchery waterline project and the boat access facility. Dan will be attending the Lake Association's annual meeting to discuss concerns some members have. The arborist onsite for the meeting had no concerns and should have a formal report for the Association by the annual meeting. Dan hopes to move forward with the land acquisition as plans are 90% complete.

5. Sunapee - Wild Goose (Newbury) - This site already discussed.

6. Other sites - Other sites are being surveyed by the Bureau of Public Works (since NHFG Land Resources Bureau does not have a surveyor). They are: Meetinghouse Pond, Marlborough; Stinson Lake, Rumney; Purity Lake, Eaton; and Connor Pond, Ossipee.

The latest version of the matrix, from April 2006, shows Glen Lake as in the concept phase. Tom questioned which part of the lake this site is on. Dan responded that the site is towards the north side and east end of the lake, sometimes referred to as the Goffstown Back Road site. The Town has a ramp in place there with limited parking and NHFG is in the process of securing additional parking through PSNH at this site and making improvements to the ramp.

8. Legislative Update - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil

Chairman MacNeil noted that according to Jared Teusch, President of the Lake Association, there was nothing pending regarding public access at this time.
Guest, Don McGinley, questioned HB 1343 which was passed that takes away CORD's ability to decide whether to grant railroad crossing leases for docks, which he feels is key to public access. Tom Quarles stated that this has been discussed at previous meetings.
Tom Quarles noted that the legislature had passed a comprehensive ethics re-clarification that affects volunteer board members that work for entities that employ lobbyists. This affects Tom as he is a partner in a law firm that employs lobbyists with business in front of the legislature. This statute became effective 6/2/06, Chapter 21, Senate Bill 206-FN, amending RSA 21-G:25, I. Tom read the pertinent language to the board and gave his judgment that because his position on the board went through Governor and Council nomination and approval that his service on this board continued to be lawful.

Chairman's Comments
Next meeting to be held July 10, 2006. Tom briefly discussed items for the July agenda.

Other Items for Board Consideration

Dan Lynch made the board aware that the new Lands Bureau Supervisor, Dave Mikolaities, would be starting on June 30, 2006 and that Mark Kirouac, Project Manager, would be leaving the Department as of June 22, 2006.

Old Business
None at this time.

ADJOURNMENT

Tom Quarles moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Mike Pillsbury. The Board unanimously approved.

Meeting adjourned at 11:25 a.m.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
May 1, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman; Daniel R. Lynch, F&G; Paul Blizzard; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Cheryl Killam; Brian Giles; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Dick Smith, NH Bass Federation; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; Carol Barleon, OEP; B. David Bryan, Rep.; Duncan Chaplin;

Members Absent: Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman; David Barrett, DOS; Patricia Goodridge; Senator John T. Gallus, Senator Joseph D. Kenney; Representative John Klose; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; and Roger J. Bellerose, Sr.

Audience Members: James Nagle

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MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen McNeil called the meeting to order at 9:08 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the April 3, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Jacquie Colburn requested the following corrections to the minutes:
Page 2, paragraph 1, 8th line; change "ACOE" to "DES."
Page 2, last paragraph, first sentence; after "...City Mayor" insert "and the City Manager."
Page 2, last paragraph, second sentence; strike "Dale Kierstead and".
Page 2, last paragraph, third sentence; after "...review sediment and the Dam at..." insert "the Belknap Mill and".

Cheryl Killam requested the following correction:
Under Members Absent: Add "Cheryl Killam"

Tom Quarles requested the following correction to the minutes:
Page 4, paragraph 2, last sentence; change "DES" to "DOT".

Carol Barleon moved to approve the minutes of April 3, 2006 as amended; seconded by Michael Pillsbury. The Board unanimously approved.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Jacque Colburn stated the Lee Perry, Dan Lynch and herself had met with Laconia City Mayor, Matt Lahey, and City Manager Eileen Cabanel, to introduce the project to the Mayor and to update Eileen who has been involved with the project from the beginning. Dan provided aerial photos; one showing the site as it now is and another, which has been superimposed to show the site as it will be upon completion. These were very helpful in describing what the site will be once completed. DES is working closely with Fish & Game to develop a proposed project timeline. There is much public interest in seeing this project completed as soon as possible. However, those involved in the project know all the many steps that must be taken to get there, and it would be helpful to get this information to the public. Working group meetings will be part of the proposed timeline as well. At this time, the proposed timeline shows construction beginning in early fall, 2006.
Allen MacNeil commended Jacquie for all her efforts on this site so far. Allen has received several calls regarding this site and would like to see some kind of publicity regarding the site. This item will be discussed at the next working group meeting. Information was posted prior to April 1 but updated information needs to be made available. Allen believes any publicity should come from DES and/or Fish & Game.
The Board did a site visit in August of 2004, and although it appears to be taking a very long time, the project is actually moving along towards completion quite well. All the other agencies and committees involved should be commended for their efforts as well. Allen MacNeil stated that as the only public access on Lake Winnisquam, this access site will be a thing of beauty and joy forever.
Dan Lynch offered the following update on the site as well: The contractor performing the Butler Building demolition will be Hong Environmental of Portsmouth, NH. Final permitting for the building demolition is being completed through DES and the EPA, including submittals for stockpiling of materials, with demolition to be completed by mid August. Site design issues: regarding dredging and flow analysis/modeling, through discussions with DES, it was determined that in order to address the current and future needs for dredging it is necessary to establish a benchmark when initial dredging is done and then on an annual basis measurements be taken to determine what level of sedimentation is occurring at the site. This will allow projection of future dredging needs. FST and the Bureau of Public Works have been provided with the proposed timeline. Public Works will be handling the bidding and awarding of the project and overseeing the project through completion.
Dan stated that the Department is required to attend an informational meeting with the city's Planning Board and the City Council. In speaking with the Mayor, it was determined that a meeting with the City Council would not be needed as they are being kept abreast of the situation, but that a presentation to the Planning Board would be helpful. That meeting will take place on June 6, 2006 and will be attended by Dan Lynch and a representative from FST.
The Department is also looking to meet with the Conservation Commission in order to keep them up to date on progress as well, as they had previously endorsed the project and the location.
Dunc Chaplin questioned if this was the same access point that former Governor Benson had been involved with. Allen said, indeed it is. Representative Chaplin stated he has received several calls from constituents wanting to know the status of the access being available and fully supports some type of media to inform the public regarding project status. Allen MacNeil stated he had also received calls regarding the same.


3. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review

Chairman MacNeil stated that there is a parcel of land in Belmont, which has been reported in the newspapers of late, regarding access issues. Unfortunately, Vice Chair Tom Quarles is not available to talk about this issue today.
Cheryl Killam questioned whether the property in Weare (SLR 06-004 - Town of Weare) was for pedestrian or vehicular traffic. Dan responded that this parcel was for vehicular traffic. The town is looking to upgrade a current one-lane bridge to a two-lane bridge and needs easements in order to accomplish this. Jacquie Colburn stated that this parcel fell under the jurisdiction of, and was subject to review, by both the Rivers Management Advisory Committee and the Lakes Management Advisory Committee. Both have recommended approval.

4. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

1. Umbagog Lake (Cambridge) - One permitted project approved for this season, reconstruction and improvement of existing ramps to reduce ice damage.

2. Baker River (Plymouth) - Wetlands permit received. Additional information provided to DES and ACOE for review, currently awaiting response due within 30 days. Once complete will be permitted and able to move forward for construction this season.

3. Millsfield Pond (Millsfield) - Wetlands permit received. Additional information provided to DES and ACOE for review, currently awaiting response due within 30 days. Once complete will be permitted and able to move forward for construction this season.

4. Turtletown Pond (Concord) - Wetlands permit received. Additional information provided to DES and ACOE for review, currently awaiting response due within 30 days. Once complete will be permitted and able to move forward for construction this season.

5. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Looking for response to wetlands permit application soon. Many inquiries about this site. Boulders on site will be removed. A parking lot and staging area will be constructed, current asphalt ramp will be replaced, and handicapped access provided.

6. Lambert Park (Hooksett) - (Merrimack River) will be submitting wetlands permit to DES within the week. Damage to concrete logs due to plowing of snow, and the river has been undermining the approach to the ramp and the ramp itself. Permit will allow for reconfiguring of the existing double-wide ramp to be more in line with angle of downstream.

7. Manning Lake (Gilmanton) - Permit application for Manning Lake will be submitted in approximately two weeks to take out asphalt ramp that stops short of the water and replace it with a full concrete ramp.

8. Merrymeeting (New Durham) - Dual project: Replacement of water line to Powder Mill Hatchery and boat access site. Met onsite with landowner to discuss the Powder Mill Hatchery waterline project. Information regarding reconfiguration of waterline presented to the landowner who would like to sell us one acre for construction of a parking lot. Plans are 90% completed and should be moving forward with permitting in the near future. Project was discussed with both DES and the ACOE and both seemed pretty much on board with the project.

9. Sunapee - Wild Goose (Newbury) -Director Perry, a representative from FST, and a representative from the Attorney General's Office met with the Newbury Board of Selectmen on April 17, 2006 to present the concept for design of the site, as well as what has been worked out between F & G and DOT regarding intersection improvements. The town had completed their own traffic study and that report will be reviewed by FST to look for correlation with the study completed by the state. Common issues were addressed including the attempt to move the ramp back in closer to the shore and having the breakwater come out past the toe of the ramp, and having a double-wide ramp with a stationary dock in the middle and another dock on the outer side of the second ramp to alleviate any problems pulling in to the ramp. There are currently two handicapped parking spots in the design, one of which falls within the 50-foot setback for shoreline protection. At this time it is unclear how this will be addressed due to limited space because of existing topography of the site. Most discussion with the selectmen focused on traffic issues at the intersection at Route 103.

10. 1995 PWAAB Priority Listing - Dan stated he should have this updated and ready for the June meeting. Also the GIS Mapping Initiative based on boat access sites will also be presented to the Board in June, showing what sites are available and what state agency they are owned/maintained by, this will also show the Road to Public Waters sites as well. Brian Giles questioned whether this information would be in a format available to the public. Dan stated that, yes, it would be available, most likely broken down by county. This information will help the Board to know what sites are out there and determine where additional sites may be needed.

Brian Giles asked Dan about the status of the Hilton Park boat ramp repairs. Mike Pillsbury of DOT answered. DOT has submitted the wetlands permit but has not yet heard back from DES in order to initiate repairs. Mike was not sure when the permit would be approved or when repairs would take place. Dan Lynch noted that the permits do sometimes take longer to approve, this is especially true for tidal waterways, which also require Governor and Council approval. Chairman MacNeil stated that the permitting process can be slow and tedious with many hoops to be jumped through which can be very frustrating. Thanks to all for your patience.

It was noted that an updated version of the matrix would be sent along with the meeting minutes.

5. Legislative Update - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil

Chairman MacNeil noted there was nothing to report at this time.

Jacquie Colburn asked whether the Board should consider taking a position regarding Surplus Land Review SLR 06-004 - Town of Weare. Jacquie made a motion to discuss, which was seconded by Dan Lynch. Carol Barleon questioned if this was the same item that both the Rivers and Lakes Management committees had voted in favor of. Jacquie stated that it is and that the Piscataquog Local Advisory Committee had also reviewed this item under the Rivers Program and is also in favor of its moving forward. This is based on public benefit and public safety, as there is not a big impact on the land. Carol Barleon made a motion to concur that the land be turned over, motion seconded by Cheryl Killam. The Board voted unanimously to approve.
Chairman's Comments

Please take note that the June meeting has been rescheduled to June 19th, 2006. Chairman MacNeil thanked the Board for responding to the Administrative Secretary regarding attendance at these meetings. It is helpful to know ahead of time if there will be enough members in attendance to be able to conduct business.

Carol Barleon questioned the date of the July meeting, which was confirmed to be July 10, 2006 in order to accommodate the holiday.

Dan Lynch spoke regarding the CORD surplus review item in the Town of Belmont. When CORD was discussing this item there was much talk about the Railroad right of way. Representatives from the DOT's Bureau of Rail and Transit will be invited to attend the June meeting.

Other Items for Board Consideration

Paul Blizzard initiated discussion about the issue of the state leasing land along the rail corridor. There was a house bill regarding leasing of shorefront railroad right of ways, sponsored by the NH Lakes Association. NHLA was strongly opposed to leasing and asked for a study to be done; the bill was killed in the House. Paul believes the state should lease that land and benefit from the revenue while the people benefit from the access to the land. In a former vote by this board it was determined that is was best to not lease that land due to the fact that it was mostly contractors and developers who were benefiting by leasing from the state and then charging homeowners large fees for access. Representative Chaplin stated that the people would not benefit, only the real estate agents and developers Chairman MacNeil stated that the Board should really look at the good of the whole not just the few when determining access.
Dan Lynch spoke from the perspective of F & G. Aside from the public access issue the rail corridor right of way actually goes into Lake Winnesquam. It would be best to have DOT come to explain the issue. Each site needs to be looked at individually as they all differ in the ways in which the public could plausibly access them. Dan believes DOT will be able to clarify some of these issues so the Board will have a full understanding of the rail corridor provisions and parameters. While public access is an issue, F & G's larger focus at this particular site had more to do with management of endangered wildlife habitat, as this area is a winter roosting area for eagles. There was much discussion at CORD regarding an abutter providing easement to the Town of Belmont for a bike path that would be on the inland side of the rail corridor that is being looked at in conjunction with the City of Laconia River Walk, which also includes portions of the corridor. There are many concerns from a biological standpoint and a biologist from Fish & Game will meet with the abutter to investigate further. Apparently, according to Lou Barker of the DOT, who spoke at the last CORD meeting, there is no public access opportunity at this site.
Jacquie Colburn stated that the LMAC recommended against the lease disposal at their March meeting because as they understand it and the way they put it is this: "Existing railway that runs parallel to the lake and the right of way in which it resides presently provides the public the opportunity to travel along the lake via foot or motorized vehicle i.e. snowmobile" and it is obvious that snowmobiles do use that corridor regularly. "Since the state owns the land to the water's edge the public has the opportunity to sit along the lake, swim from the shore or fish from the shore. While the granting of the lease would not legally prohibit the public from using the leased area, in practice the public's ability to engage in recreational activities along this area of Lake Winnesqaum's shoreline would be significantly impacted." Jacquie stated that if the DOT is saying that the public does not have access to this area that is something she is not familiar with and having them explain at a future meeting is necessary. If anyone has questions regarding this item they should write them down and bring them to the June meeting where representatives from DOT are expected to be in attendance. Johanna Lyons stated that this will be a good discussion to have, not only for this site but perhaps there should be a bill to study all state owned lakefront property to determine if we in fact do want to lease out this property. It could be of benefit not to lease any of this type of property because there may be many public benefits to be considered in not leasing, other than monetary benefits.
Paul Blizzard questioned why we would want to stop such a huge tax base? Ninety percent of the homes on the lakes are second homes and so are not a drain on the city's resources for the taxes they pay.

Carol Barleon stated that the issue can get out of hand when looking at it one piece of property at a time. The Board needs to know the total effects of these leases on our resources before we can make good decisions. We need to look at the aggregate effects, not just the individual effects. Chairman MacNeil stated that Fish & Game is totally responsible for providing boating access to the state's waterways and this Board is there to support them. We need to look at the big picture, even when the issue is controversial.

Dan Lynch spoke to the Board regarding Harilla's Landing. Dan will be providing an old concept plan to Tom Quarles for review. Allen will place this item on the June meeting agenda. Paul Blizzard said that was the reason that guest Jim Nagle was in attendance at this meeting. Mr. Nagle stated that as a contractor he wants to ensure that contractors have some say in the planning and will be able to access the landing as necessary to get their business done. There is currently very limited access for contractors. Island development has dramatically increased and frequently contractors doing marine based work have no access. Chairman MacNeil will make sure Vice Chair Tom Quarles is aware of this issue and can speak to it at the June meeting. Mr. Nagle will plan to attend on June 19, 2006.

Chairman MacNeil stated that his term would be up as of October 27, 2006. However, due to his brother in law being seriously ill, he must spend time with him during rehabilitation. July will be Allen's last meeting as Chairman, with Tom taking over in August. Allen is very sorry to be leaving the Board as he has enjoyed tremendously his time here. Allen urged the Board to please keep up the good work.

Old Business

Representative Dunc Chaplin questioned Chairman MacNeil's request for a meeting with the Governor regarding certain member's non-attendance at these meetings. Allen has not heard anything yet but will be talking with his assistant, Kathy Goode soon. Dunc stated that he anticipates follow up on that issue would be favorably received by the Governor.

ADJOURNMENT

Paul Blizzard moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by B. David Bryan. Unanimously approved.

Meeting adjourned at 10:15 a.m.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
April 3, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman; Carol Barleon, OEP; Paul Blizzard, Roger J. Bellerose, Sr., B. David Bryan, Rep. Duncan Chaplin; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Johanna Lyons, DRED; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Michael Pillsbury, DOT;
and Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Members Absent: Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman; David Barrett, DOS; Brian Giles, Patricia Goodridge, Senator John T. Gallus, Senator Joseph D. Kenney, Cheryl Killam, and Representative John Klose

Audience Members: Dick Smith, NH Bass Federation

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MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen McNeil called the meeting to order at 9:03 a.m.

Chairman MacNeil introduced Richard Smith a member of the audience who had been nominated by Governor and Council to replace John Cowan on the PWAAB. If confirmed at the April 5, 2006, Governor and Council meeting, he will officially be on the Board at the May meeting.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the February 6, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Jacquie Colburn requested the following corrections to the minutes as follows:
Page 2, paragraph 1, last sentence; change "Towle" to "Toll."
Page 2, Paragraph 2, last sentence; add the word "boats" at the end of the sentence.
Page 2, Paragraph 4, 3rd sentence; change "we have secured" to "F&G has secured the demolition permit."
Page 3, 3rd Paragraph, change spelling of "Cabrinelle" to "Cabanel."
Page 4, paragraph 2, last sentence; change . . . "therefore the public will not (delete with) come in contact with the soil."

Roger Bellerose requested the following change to the minutes on page 3, last paragraph:
Change the word . . . an attempt by the City to " . . . an attempt by F&G to . . ."

Dan Lynch requested a change to page 4, 1st sentence, 2nd line: ". . . and Mr. Lynch (delete "was not sure") and replace with F&G's consultant had subsurface exploration completed."

Maynard Goldman requested the rewording of Paragraph 5, 2nd sentence through the rest of the paragraph as follows:
"Maynard Goldman felt we should contact the Winnisquam Association. It sounds like a deal for the developer and the Board should not support such private arrangements. He believes it might require a change in legislation and the cost is very low. However, even if the cost is raised, he believes there are issues. There are too few areas left for public access."

Roger Bellerose moved to approve the minutes of March 6, 2006 as amended; seconded by Maynard Goldman. The Board unanimously approved.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

On March 17, 2006, a permitting meeting was held at Fish and Game. Two hours was devoted to discussion of the Winnisquam site with representation from FST, F&G, DES, and Army Corp. of Engineers. An additional two hours was spent discussing sites at Sunapee and Merrymeeting Lakes. Kevin Gagne of FST did introductions for the concept of the Winnisquam access site. A wharf type structure with some dredging was determined to be the best approach. The Corps of Engineers asked about the river environment because of sediment. ACOE would like to try and look at sediment transport to see what type of sediment is coming down the river. Jacquie Colburn did note DES did not want to slow the project down but wanted to know how the need for dredging in the future would be addressed. The Butler Building demolition was discussed in detail and it was determined that no Wetlands approval is required. There was in-depth discussion about surface water treatment and how best to handle that aspect of the project.

Dan Lynch referenced the RFP for the Butler Building demolition and noted two responses were received: one for about $180,000 and one for about $86,000. Dan briefly reviewed the asbestos and lead issues on the buildings based on a report completed by DES contractors. The buildings are old greenhouse frames, one has no siding or roof. The other one is covered with sheet metal siding and windows. Some of the paint in the covered building has been identified as lead-based and some of the glazing on windows is asbestos. All of this has to be handled in accordance with DES and EPA standards for dealing with hazardous material abatement. Based on the borings we did on site, what we are looking to do is to take and move the top layer off the site and deposit in hole left from removal of the Butler Building foundations. Mr. Lynch informed the Board that the contractor paperwork was received Friday, March 31, and F&G was looking to have that contract as a late item at the April 5, 2006 Governor and Council meeting. The contractor has 120 days to complete the removal. They will have to work their schedule around the work hours of the Winnipesaukee River Basin Wastewater treatment facility (7 am - 3 pm) as that is when they will have access to that part of the site.

Jacquie Colburn discussed flow model. Mr. Lynch stated he did not think F&G will be doing flow model. The cost could be $35,000.00 and would take 3 months. We are trying to review contour plans for some of the sewer lines that are downstream of the access site parcel to include trying to get information from the Laconia Public Works.

Jacquie Colburn stated, we will be meeting Friday, April 7, with the working group and will brief the City Mayor and the City Manager. Ms. Colburn mentioned that in the last week of March a site visit was done with Darlene Forst (DES). Darlene had not seen the site yet and we reviewed the river along the edge to review sediment and the Dam at Belknap Mill and Lake Opechee. Jacquie requested that Dan Lynch send her FST's flow modeling estimate.

Dan Lynch reported the NHFG contacted Ralph Longevin, owner of the land which is now Martel's to tell him we will be doing some river dredging and to see if he would be comfortable to sign off on a letter required to go with the wetlands permit application. Mr. Longevin said he would sign off on a letter. F&G moved further with the leasing of parking at the storage center on Winnisquam Ave so folks could use Martel's ramp. Parking on the property would be for 42 trailered spots and very hopefully this will be the last time NHFG will lease.

Carol Barleon noted that the City of Laconia has received a grant for a car-top/canoe site on the Winnipesaukee River by Belknap Mills site.

Roger Bellerose mentioned the coffer dam requirement. Mr. Dick Pinney expressed to him that he did not know. However, according to the NH Sunday News, it states that Mr. Pinney stated there has been quite a lot of controversy about the proposed state boat ramp slated to be built on property just purchased on the river. Mr. Pinney reported the site is fraught with problems, such as removal of buildings and launching/retrieving boats during times of big flow. Mr. Pinney further reported that the Army Corp was never solicited for its input into this construction project but has now injected its presence and raised a number of very serious doubts and possibly the need for coffer dams, etc. Mr. Pinney further reported that much of this information was known before the Executive Council okayed this land purchase and members of the public were very disappointed that they gave their approval to purchase the land. Mr. Bellerose said the article mentioned the cost of the project could wipe out the whole amount budgeted for access projects and was this true.

Dan Lynch responded to Mr. Bellerose that it was a shame that Mr. Pinney was provided inaccurate information. Mr. Lynch reported that the ACOE was present at an on-site meeting in August 2005, as well as at the March 17th project meeting with DES and Ms. Colburn has communicated ACOE comments. Mr. Lynch further reported that initial estimate of the project was at about $1 million, and between available state boat access funds and federal boat access funds there is about $3 million available for boat access projects.

3. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review (Vice Chair Quarles and Jacquie Colburn)

Chairman MacNeil stated that Vice Chair Quarles was unable to attend the meeting due to prior work obligations, but if at all possible will try to make it by 11 a.m.

There was a brief discussion on the Laconia Sun article about where it mentioned the Board had voted "for" the lease. Chairman MacNeil did speak with the author of that article to correct his misinterpretation and to let him know that he misquoted the vote of the PWAAB. For the record, the Board voted not to support 11-1 the lease of the railroad corridor in Belmont along Lake Winnisquam for a private development.

There was continued Board discussion on the issue of $25/linear foot. Mr. Blizzard felt the Board should be discussing business relative to current access not the fee structure.

Richard Smith felt the public should be getting something back and that the fee of $25 per linear foot is too low. Also, can that fee by put back into boat access? The question was referred to Rep. Chaplin for a response. He replied, 1.) public use, and (2.) what should it be used for and how much.

Jacquie Colburn reviewed the agenda of the Lakes Advisory Management Committee meeting of March 24, 2006, in which the LMAC voted against disposal. A memo to that affect will be going to Peter Helm of CORD. CORD meets every other month and the next scheduled meeting is April 6, 2006 and then again in June.

Jacquie Colburn referenced another Land Surplus Review that needs to be placed on the PWAAB May agenda for review. SLR 06-004 - Town of Weare from DOT to take land near a bridge for a bridge replacement project.

4. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

1. Baker River - Confirmation from DES for issuance of wetlands permit. Army Corps of Engineer has asked F&G for additional information (April 27 to respond).

2. Lambert Park (Hooksett) - (Merrimack River) will be submitting wetlands permit to DES within a couple of weeks. Maynard Goldman noted that the ramp is deteriorated. It is more so upstream due to the river eroding part of the approach to the ramp. Final plans and documents are ready to submit for the wetlands permit.

3. Connecticut River (Orford) -Worked out the MOA and provided final copy back to the Town. Trying to get town attorney to review and when F&G hears can start finalizing plans.

4. Hoyt Pond (Madbury) - Right-of-way to Pond. There is a subdivision going on in the area. Agreed to a swap of ROW. Legal documentation on file. Will be putting up sign on the location.

5. Winchester - Forest Lake. The landowner closed the ramp due to liability issue. F&G is looking to purchase some portion of land: One-acre parcel and a three-acre parcel. 2 scenarios have been provided to property owner.

Roger Bellerose asked about the appraisal but Dan Lynch did not have a figure.

6. Merrymeeting (New Durham) - Dual project: Replacement of water line to Powder Mill Hatchery and boat access site. Landowner where boat access parking would go wanted to see what was happening with waterline project. Looking to schedule a meeting with the landowner, Lake Association members and town members. It may or may not negate a parking issue. Plans are 80% completed. The parking abuts to DOT right-of-way. Mr. Lynch explained to Roger Bellerose what F&G was attempting to do relative to the gravity base waterline. Looking to put the new line in as close as possible without impacting the existing line.
Chairman MacNeil asked if Chuck Miner was involved in the project. Dan has the plans for the site as they exist. Mr. Bellerose discussed asbestos pipe issues. DES says you have to bag it up and dispose of it properly.

7. Sunapee - Wild Goose (Newbury) - Discussion took place with the engineers in mid-March. Submit application with plans. Dan has sent a request to the town to go over plans and the intersection concept. The Newbury Board of Selectmen meeting scheduled for April 17 is for informational purposes only. Dan told Roger that he was not sure what weighs in on the Governor's decision. Besides, NHFG does not want to impact DRED's park operations. Discussed dredging, loons, lake depth. Looking at 400' out into the lake for boats to get into deep enough water in the lake.

Carol Barleon looking for updated matrix. It was noted that the matrix would be sent along with the meeting minutes.

8. Hilton Park - Received 100% completed plans, which were submitted to DOT who will handle the permit. Mike Pillsbury said they have been sent to DES and hope to have permit in April.

9. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Awaiting response on wetlands permit application. DES confirmed that the application was administratively complete. Mr. Bellerose asked about tree removal and Dan explained there were about 7 trees that met the scenic road criteria and about 17 total in right-of-way of town.

5. Legislative Update - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil

Chairman MacNeil noted there was nothing to report at this time.

7. Hobo Railroad - Mike Pillsbury/DOT

Mike Pillsbury updated the Board on the research the subcommittee had completed to date relative the Hobo Railroad. The entire management plan was located in the DOT files and they will be moving forward with the Management Plan. There is a process that needs to be followed to address public access at the railroad corridor. He will keep the Board informed as it moves forward.

5. Legislative Update - Continued Discussion - Legislative Activity

Rep. Chaplin - Of the Senate bills that he sees in the Recreation area it seems the concentration deal with Trail issues.

Jacquie Colburn as an FYI mentioned HB1343, which is before the House, which would change CORD's status as being an "advisory" board only versus approval authority for surplus land reviews.

Dan Lynch asked Mike Pillsbury a question relative to the Hobo Railroad and the time frame for getting this done. Bill Hauser is the person who will assign someone to do this and at this time Mike did not know. Land Management plan might not take a lot of time. Railroad line - adds a wriggle.

Hobo Railroad to be on the agenda for May.

8. Comprehensive Shoreland Protection Act

In 2005 there was a bill that created a Commission to study the Shoreland Protection Act and make any recommendations. Rep. Currier, Chairman of the Recreation, Resources and Development Committee of the House is the Commission chair. Discussion took placed on the CSP Act and the role PWAAB plays relative to Chapter 483, 403A and 430B. Board members suggested Dan and the Chairman compose a letter to Rep. Currier to outline that the Commission take a look at Public Boat Access sites and permitting requirements. There is some discussion about primary structures and water-dependent structures and how those provisions in the CSP Act apply to public boat access facilities, such as boat ramps, approaches to the ramp, handicap parking and parking lots.

The motion to write to Rep. Currier relative to the Board interest in having the CSP Act Commission look at public boat access facility permitting compliance was made by Maynard Goldman and seconded by Jacquie Colburn. With 10 members voting, 9 were in favor and one abstained (Dan Lynch).

Johanna Lyons asked about the letter addressing all type of public access, such as swimming beaches.

ADJOURNMENT

Paul Blizzard moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Roger Bellerose. Unanimously approved.

Meeting adjourned at 10:38 a.m.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
March 6, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters


Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman, Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman, Carol Barleon, OEP; Paul Blizzard, Roger J. Bellerose, Sr., B. David Bryan, Rep. Duncan Chaplin; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Shari Colby, DRED; Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Cheryl Killam, Gov's Commission on Disability; and Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Members Absent: David Barrett, DOS; John Cowan, Brian Giles, Patricia Goodridge, Senator John T. Gallus, Senator Joseph D. Kenney, and Representative John Klose; and Michael Pillsbury, DOT

Audience Members: Dick Smith, NH Bass Federation, and Jared Teutsch, NH Lakes Association

*****************************************************************************

MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen McNeil called the meeting to order at 9:06 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the February 6, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Corrections to the minutes as follows:

Page 1, paragraph 2, 1st sentence; delete the "t" following B. David Bryan's name.
Page 3, item 3, middle of paragraph 2; at the end of the sentence, "He explained what you would see as you rode . . . " delete the period at the end of the sentence and continue on to read, " . . . cross the property line between the State and Harilla's Landing Yacht Club." New sentence to begin with "The dock area near . . ."
Page 4, 2nd paragraph; add quotation mark following the words unload dock," so cars . . .
Page 5, 4th paragraph, last sentence; Add the word help. Dig-Safe cannot help because . . .
Page 8, 1st paragraph, add "per year" following $25 per linear foot per year.
Page 8, last paragraph, change HB 1364 to HB 1426.

Carol Barleon moved to approve the minutes of February 6, 2006; seconded by Maynard Goldman. The Board unanimously approved the minutes as amended.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Jacquie Colburn gave an update on the working group meeting held Friday, March 3, 2006. One of the agenda items for this meeting consisted of a review of her presentation of February 22, 2006, in which Jacquie reviewed the Winnisquam Boat Access project status at a Governor and Council Breakfast held at DES. Jacquie gave the Governor and Council and others an overview of the site and stated that when this project is complete it will be the one and only publicly owned and maintained access site on the lake, and it will be open to the public on a non fee basis. She used aerial maps to point out the access area where the Winnipesaukee River flows into Lake Winnisquam. She further talked about the status of access on the lake and that one time there had been as many as 14-15 privately owned and maintained access sites and that in the summer of 2004 Martel's was the only one available. Further, because of the parking problems the owner of Martel's closed it and brought it to the attention of former Governor Benson. Then Fred Toll, former City Councilor, asked if the State and the City could work together to develop the area across from Martel's, which is the Laconia compound we are working on.

Ms. Colburn reviewed the area noting the regional sewage treatment collection system as well as the property that used to be the Laconia Wastewater Treatment facility. Because there are many on site structures that are active as well as abandoned, and some of these structures are more than 50 years old, it was necessary that they be reviewed by the NH Historical Resources Division. Jacquie reviewed another aerial map which showed what the access site area would look like when completed. With 35-36 parking spaces for trailered and canoe car top as well as several spaces for handicapped van accessible, one space for marine patrol and one for a conservation officer. She reviewed the docking structure and the area for tying up boats.

Jacquie then gave the Governor and Council a synopsis of what we have accomplished to date. Another map showed the property transfer between Fish and Game and the City of Laconia which has taken place. Also, the MOA had been signed and approved. The Digester Building, which had been part of the Winnipesaukee River Basin Program, is now going to be used as part of the Fish and Game access site. We have completed the environmental site assessment, the hazardous materials audit for the building, completed the open house last summer, and have submitted the papers to the NH Historic Resources (NHHR). NHHR determined that the site was eligible for the State and National Historic Register (there is no other sewage facility left in the State in this condition). The NHHR is most interested in the Digester Building and has asked that it be retained. As a result, Councilor Burton and Commissioner Nolin asked a few DES staff to research the feasibility of federal funding to rehab and reuse this building in the future.

Jacquie Colburn informed Governor and Council that the next steps are to obtain all the permits, and that F&G, DES and Faye, Spofford & Thorndike (FST) would be meeting soon to prepare applications and plans to obtain all the federal and state reviews and permits. Fish & Game is working on their bid package for the demolition work and also working with the USFWS to complete the NEPA environmental checklist and finalize the funding package for federal aid grant review. She noted that F&G has secured the demolition permit with the City of Laconia to remove the Butler Buildings. She mentioned the various agencies, private and public, as well as neighbors involved in the site, and that the timeframe for construction of the ramp is late summer or early fall and plans are to have the site open for the 2007 boating season.

Jacquie shared questions received from Governor and Council. Councilor Burton asked that Fish and Game and the Department of Environmental Services meet with the new Mayor of Laconia to make him aware of the project and bring him up to speed. He further talked about the number of parking spaces and said that based on his observation there is always more demand for spaces than available. Councilor Burton further discussed the future use of the Digester Building as some kind of resources and/or museum type facility and how water quality has improved immensely since the 70's when wastewater was being discharged into the lake.

Governor Lynch asked Jacquie Colburn about the timeframe and mentioned that Representative Veazey was interested in having something done on the site in April and she explained that we still had a great deal of work left to do and would be focusing on doing the ramp construction in preferably lower flow periods. Councilor Pignatelli also asked if there would be anyone from F&G or DES at the ramp once the site was opened. Ms. Colburn replied that the Winnisquam Watershed Association had expressed an interest in participating in the Lake Host Program.

The remainder of the meeting on Friday was spent going over our planned schedule. Dan Lynch will e-mail the group a detailed work schedule for the next several months of what needs to be done and when, as soon as possible.

There was a pre-bid meeting held Friday, March 3, 2006 attended by several contractors who expressed interest in securing the contract to remove the buildings.

Dan Lynch commented that Director Perry did contact City Manager Eileen Cabanel to coordinate a meeting with the new Mayor. In follow up on the demolition of the Butler Building/demolition work, Mr. Lynch noted that responses for the RFPs were due March 17, 2006, and we would be reviewing them and awarding a contract. Based on the dollar amount, this contract will require Governor and Council approval. We hope to make it onto one of the G&C April meetings for their approval. The plan is to have the work completed within 120 days of contract approval.

F&G is looking to move forward with renewing our agreement for parking so the public can utilize the ramp at Martel's again this boating season. As in the past, we hope to have parking provided from April 1 - October 1. Dan reiterated Jacquie's earlier comments relative to working out a timeline schedule to get this work started in late fall so that the site will be ready for the 2007 boating season.

Dan Lynch noted one issue that has not been dealt with by Fish and Game before on a project of this size. A recent change in State Statute RSA 21-I:80, allows Fish and Game to do public works projects up to $250,000 without going through the Bureau of Public Works/Design and Construction under the Administrative Services Department. Based on the estimates for the cost for this site, it will be over this $250,000 cost estimate, therefore, we do have to work through the Bureau of Public Works/Design and Construction under the Administrative Services Department. We did meet with the Public Works people on Friday, March 3, 2006 to discuss this and other access projects that will go over the $250,000 threshold. They are not going to get involved in the building demolition component, but from this point forward they are more or less the lead agency. They will be overseeing the plans done for the design, and they will be bidding out the project for the State of New Hampshire. The plan is to have an outside contractor. It adds another dimension to the project. Hopefully, it will not impinge on the timeline.

Roger Bellerose asked about the land transfer and if there was an attempt by F&G to have the Butler Buildings removed. Dan Lynch answered that when an appraisal was done for the property it was laid out as a vacant lot (no structures) which would provide the highest, best value. The estimated appraisal value of the Butler Buildings is near $0 and the estimate for what it would cost to have those buildings demolished was provided to the City. In its current state the value of the land was approximately $235,000 (with the Butler Buildings) and the City agreed to a price of $180,000. The land was valued at $265,000 - it was estimated to be about $30,000 to take the buildings down.

Mr. Bellerose further asked if any subsurface exploration for contaminants in the soil was considered, and Mr. Lynch stated that F&G's consultant had subsurface exploration completed. He did say that part of that is being addressed in the demolition work. In working with DES, the whole site will be covered, therefore the public will not come in contact with the soil.

3. CORD - State-Owned Land Surplus Land Review (Vice Chair Quarles and Jacquie Colburn)

Vice Chair Quarles reviewed CORD's memo of February 1, 2006 in which DOT proposes to lease 1,305 linear feet of lakefront on Lake Winnisquam to Sun Lake Village, LLC, to allow permitting of a docking structure and construction of a pedestrian crossing as provided in RSA 228:57-a. This law allows leases of State-owned railroad property to landowners whose property is separated from public waters by the railroad for the purpose of constructing docks or mooring fields. The applicant owns property abutting the State-owned railroad corridor in Belmont.

This State Owned Land, Surplus Land Review, Town of Belmont SLR 06-001, and a series of news articles about the general issue of leasing State-owned property for private docks were discussed. In particular, a Union Leader article of September 3, 2005, which focused on Winnisquam issue at hand, was discussed at length.

Using the Winnisquam map, Mr. Quarles pointed out where along the shoreline the railway was located. The dock proposal under discussion is near Mosquito Bridge on Route 3 going from Tilton to Laconia. On the north side of Mosquito Bridge there is shoreline which the rail line follows. The developer is proposing to get water access across the state-owned right-of-way under this leasing statute. The plan is for 12 docks so with a 24-unit subdivision each owner would have one side of a dock.

PWAAB has been asked by CORD to give its recommendation on this Surplus Land Disposal proposal under our statutory duty to advise CORD on public water matters. There still is an outstanding issue as to whether the statutory role of the LMAC and/or RMAC in reviewing these proposals means the recommendation from either of these boards is a veto. This issue has been with the Attorney General's Office for an opinion for a number of months and it is still there awaiting a decision. Also, in previous meetings we have discussed legislation of one or more bills that would call for a study commission on this issue and a moratorium on this leasing while that study commission is in process.

Tom Quarles noted that once these various boards weigh in and give their recommendations to CORD, it is up to CORD to decide if they think it is a suitable surplus land disposal. If CORD agrees, the proposal goes before Governor and Council. Jacquie Colburn clarified that it goes through the Legislature's Long Range Capital Planning and Utilization Committee and then onto Governor and Council. Vice Chair Quarles stated that although the response date to CORD was due March 6, 2006, there is an agreement with CORD on projects of any magnitude or controversy where they will allow us extra time. Jacquie Colburn confirmed that CORD meets every other month and will not be meeting until April 6, 2006. PWAAB will be meeting next on April 3, 2006. Jacquie stated that the LMAC discussed this at their last meeting, and it will be on their agenda at their next meeting.

Chairman MacNeil mentioned a newspaper article referring to the leasing fee of $25 per linear foot per year. Ms. Colburn thought it might be under consideration in some proposed bills, however, referred the question to Jared Teutsch (NH Lakes Association). He was not familiar with any such referenced legislation. Jared explained that HB 1684, which is a NH Lakes Association bill, would create a study commission with a moratorium on leasing. The committee voted inexpedient to legislate which is their recommendation to kill the bill. Jared thought it would go to the full House February 7, 2006 and that NHLA plans to fight it. He believes the committee did not understand the intent of the bill. NHLA questioned if we should be giving state-owned property for private use. The committee looked at the bill as a CORD process.

Rep. Chandler's bill, HB 1342, would essentially eliminate CORD as a reviewing body; it would become an advisory body to advise the Long Range Capital Planning Committee. It would no longer have the ability to vote up or down on lease proposals. Chairman MacNeil asked who would make those decisions if CORD was out of the picture, and Jared said the Long Range Capital Planning Committee would make them and then pass them on to Governor and Council. Jared informed the Board this was proposed under HB 1343 which did pass the Public Works Committee. Vice Chair Quarles asked if this passed would the LMAC and RMAC make their recommendations to the Long Range Capital Planning Committee and Jared replied, "No." Jared Teutsch said the current process would continue. The only change would be that CORD would no longer have authority to vote up or down on the leasing or sale of state-owned property. CORD will simply advise committees such as PWAAB, RMAC or LMAC on the leasing or sale of state-owned property. Mr. Quarles asked Jared if Rep. Chandler's bill changed the language regarding how the RMAC or LMAC make that recommendation. Jared believes what they discussed was the procedural details of what these boards already have - they have to review it and vote "yes" or "no." If they table the project, it essentially is a veto of the project from a procedural standpoint. The House Public Works Committee did not like the procedural veto ability of RMAC, LMAC or PWAAB so they insisted upon an amendment to HB 1343. The amendment would include that all those bodies would have to submit their minutes to the Long Range Capital Planning Committee. This would allow Public Works to be aware of these leasing/sale issues before they come before them. This amendment was approved and Jared agreed to supply the Board a copy.

Tom Quarles expressed concern about the language of our statute and how much flexibility PWAAB has on this project. If we are constrained by this language, how are we are suppose to "serve as advisory committee to CORD and alert CORD to any potential problems which may inhibit state public water access efforts." There is no existing public access at the present time. Jacquie Colburn responded there is access to the area from the water and pedestrians can travel within the railroad right-of-way to access the shorefront and water.

Mr. Quarles stated that if and when this proposal is approved, there will be 1,300' of frontage that has no public usage for at least 5 years at a bargain basement rate. Furthermore, the expectation is that these leases are always renewed. Mr. Quarles noted that the docks are not permanent; however, he gave an example of the 18 Mile Point on Meredith Bay lease where they were allowed to put in permanent docks. He felt this was an example of where things could go.

Carol Barleon clarified that this would open up 24 dock spaces for "high-end" users, which would probably be used by non-residents of New Hampshire traveling to the area. She questioned the traffic impact on the lake. Carol asked, even though we are looking at access for the State, do we also have ability to bring other issues to the table for CORD and anyone looking at this request (for example, water usage for our water bodies in the State)? Mr. Quarles asked the Board if they were familiar with this area. Tom was familiar with some very shallow water offshore in this area. It was known as a very popular rafting area where power boats often anchored to beach and party.

Tom Quarles asked Paul Blizzard if he had any information on that part of the lake. Mr. Blizzard discussed seasonal vs. permanent docks and felt that seasonal docks tended to fall apart and that permanent docks had better longevity. It was Mr. Quarles' understanding that permanent docks would not be allowed. Tom questioned whether we should take a position to preserve this site as a public assess site. Further, you could take the position that anytime you have one of these private railroad leases that some accommodation for public access should be made, but it begs the question should it be developed at all as an access site for either private purposes or a mixed private/public site.

Johanna Lyons felt that if we continue to lease these lakefront railroad sites there should be some type of public good that is shown. We have not seen these leases and do not know the public benefit. She has been trying to pull lease language from some DRED leases to see if there are some good examples of resource protection, resource restoration or some sort of public access benefit. If this is still the direction the Legislature wants us to take in continuing to lease lakefront, there needs to be public benefit to us.

Jacquie Colburn felt we needed to keep in mind what the statute says for our particular Board. That is, what public access is presently available at this particular location? We need to think about the conditions that exist; an undeveloped shoreline which means people can anchor right near the shore at the present time and could go on to the property. Because it is state-owned land, they could fish from their boat or from the shoreline, and they could walk up the railroad corridor to take advantage of any fishing. The Board needs to consider what are the present opportunities now and how the proposal would inhibit public access.

Tom Quarles asked Jacquie if she knew if the Winnisquam Lakes Association has looked at this request and taken a position. She did not know but would look into it. Maynard Goldman felt we should contact the Winnisquam Association. It sounds like a deal for the developer and the Board should not support such private arrangements. He believes it might require a change in legislation and the cost is very low. However, even if the cost is raised, he believes there are issues. There are too few areas left for public access.

Paul Blizzard did not feel we should get into the fee or cost of rental of boat slips as stated in one of the news articles. A $25,000 rental fee is not going to happen. He felt it was thrown in by someone who was misinformed. The boat slips should stay with those homes or condos and not be for sale. He felt that houses should go for fair market value and have a State fee for boat fees. Roger Bellerose felt it was a boat access in reverse -- land that you access by boat only. He did not feel that this Board should weigh in on whether or not this should be leased.

As a member of the Resources, Recreation & Development Committee, Rep. Chaplin would argue any provisions that were made for the leasing of this should also include equal opportunity for citizen of our State to access that land. We are talking about selling their rights to protect future waterfront and further felt it was a political issue and advised the Board to think twice before making a decision.

Vice Chair Quarles brought the discussion back to Johanna Lyon's comments in that there is no public benefit to the project as presently proposed. The only way from our Board's perspective to add public benefit would be to recommend in some fashion that there be public access to these proposed docks. Is this the direction to go in or does this Board want to recommend that we see no public benefit unless or until there is public access to these docks. Or being familiar with the public access issues at Winnisquam, knowing we have a full state-of-the-art site coming on line shortly on Water Street, plus we have the informal access further up the east side at Governor's State Park, does this Board think there is a need for an additional access site here?

Rep. Chaplin spoke relative to the attractiveness of the site and in terms of how nice it is to be able to be out in a boat or canoe and to be able to moor and go onshore to picnic, etc. Tom Quarles pointed out the nearby location of the Belmont Town Beach and did not recall much of any development near this area for probably half a mile. Rep. Chaplin felt it might be very attractive to boating and fishing to have this left undeveloped. Mr. Quarles stated that allowing the proposal would be fragmenting a very large piece of shorefront.

Dan Lynch referenced a news article about action taken at a previous CORD meeting. The article referenced information provided by Peter Blakeman, Chairman of the State Conservation Commission. In his letter to CORD, it said that ownership or leasing of shorefront land brings with it the right to apply for concurrent mooring fields which pushes development further into the lake. Dan questioned whether this was true. Jacquie Colburn thought that it was correct, but this proposal would result in an application to DES for docks. A mooring field proposal would go before the Department of Safety.

Further, Dan had questions relative to the September 3, 2005 Union Leader article. Recreational trails are planned for folks to walk or ride to downtown Laconia. It was Dan's understanding that Laconia is working on a bike/pedestrian trail that goes either along or down this rail corridor. If there is a proposal to do it here as well as the stretch the Town of Belmont owns and then you consider this proposed private section of trail, then it doesn't make sense. Dan felt the Board needed to gather more information about this before making a decision. He thought the public did not have the right to cross an active rail line. F&G had looked at a parcel with a similar situation and did not move forward because of that concern. We have some other concerns relative to biological issues which will come up in permitting later. It seems like we have bits and pieces of projects happening in this area. Why should they have a specific benefit that the rest of the public does not.

Rep. Chaplin would be looking to the Attorney General's Office to provide a legal opinion on this issue. Chairman MacNeil asked Rep. Chaplin if his committee would ask the Attorney General's Office for that opinion and he agreed and felt his committee would support him. Tom Quarles felt we could get more information, but felt we had enough information to vote and felt the issue was do we see any public benefit with or without public access.

Johanna Lyons felt we should be able to ask what the plan is for the 1,300' of shoreline along that rail line. The Bureau of Rail & Transits should be able to provide us with just how many miles of rail line they own and how much has been leased. Board member Johanna Lyons moved that the Public Water Access Advisory Board recommend against approval of the proposed state surplus land disposal, Project SLR 06-001, because there is no indication of any public benefit. In addition, the Board recommends that CORD and the DOT Bureau of Rails examine the entire issue of leasing State-owned railroad corridors that provide lake and river access on a comprehensive basis including the issue of fragmenting currently undeveloped shorefront and riverfront property. The motion was seconded by Rep. Duncan Chaplin. With eleven (11) members voting in favor and one (1) opposed (Paul Blizzard), the motion passed.

Rep. Chaplin asked Jared Teutsch what the NH Lake Association's viewpoint was. Jared said the motion pretty much defined the purpose of HB 1684, which was proposed by NHLA. The bill also addressed that the State shouldn't be leasing shorefront at all, which was addressed by Rep. Chaplin at this meeting. DOT does not know how much land they have, and the fee of $25/linear foot per year is ridiculous.

Tom Quarles asked Jared if he knew if the Winnisquam Lakes Association had taken a position on this and he did not know. Paul Blizzard felt we should stay of out the pricing issue and felt we should get away from lake access. He noted that there was a multitude of private crossings. Vice Chair Quarles stated that private crossings were not in the motion and not what was being addressed.

Jacquie Colburn mentioned that the Department of Transportation is working on an inventory and that the question has been raised on how much waterfront land does DOT own? In talking with them, DOT has multitudes of file cabinets full of land they own. Jacquie would like to see other state agencies work on an inventory of their property as well. DES, DRED and F&G all have waterfront property. To address Paul's concern, the Board is talking about the leasing of state-owned land which is the motion before us.

Vice Chairman Tom Quarles will compose a letter to the NH Council on Resources and Development (CORD) to include the motion. It was agreed that the following committees would be copied: Long Range Capital Planning, LMAC, RMAC, Chairmen of the legislative committees and Governor and Council. In addition to the motion, Carol Barleon requested that we include in our memo the concern the Board has regarding public access.

Jacquie Colburn will contact the Winnisquam Lake Association and report their position at the April 3, 2006 meeting. Mr. Teutsch said he would keep the Board abreast of any upcoming legislation and plans to attend the PWAAB meetings on a regular basis.

4. Update on Harilla's Landing - Vice Chairman Thomas Quarles

There has been little follow-up since Paul Goodwin came before the Board last month. Mr. Quarles has not heard from Mike Pillsbury from DOT to get him up to speed. As stated at the February meeting, the land currently is managed by DOT so we will need to move on the land swap issues before we can proceed. It may be at least another two months before we move forward.

5. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Dan Lynch provided a hand-out for each member's manual. This is a list of completed projects by the Fish and Game Department related to boat access and whether it was a trailered craft or cartop project. This list goes back to 1991. Dan answered questions on how to read the report. He stated that in 1995 the Board came up with a list of priorities on a County level. This list was updated and provided to the Board six months ago. This new list will be updated in a table summary. Also, Dan Lynch will be providing information from the Office of Energy and Planning's GIS database, which will give the Board a visual depiction of where state-owned and controlled boat access exist on the public waters of the State. Hopefully, this will guide the Board to set priorities and determine where public access sites are needed. Information relative to other state departments will also be referenced.

1. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Fish and Game owns the land. The design has been completed. We have submitted the wetland's permit application and are waiting to hear from DES.

2. Baxter Lake (Rochester) - This is a site Fish and Game owns.

3. Hilton Park (Dover) - Based on direction by the Board, using our consultants we developed plans to provide temporary repairs to the existing ramp. Those plans have been provided to the DOT who will be handling the application for the wetland's permit.

4. Millsfield Pond (Millsfield) - This is a parcel F&G leases. We have received the permit to reconfigure some of the parking to control some of the run off and drainage that has made the site not as user friendly.

5. Baker River (Plymouth) - Fish and Game has submitted a wetland's permit to make modifications to the existing site so that it meets the OSHA stairway requirements.

6. Big Diamond Pond (Stewartstown) - This is an existing access. Fish and Game leases two lots from the town which provides driveway access from the town road into the property we own. We are working toward acquiring those 2 parcels.

7. Stratford Bog - A site Fish and Game has worked in partnership with NH Environmental Services/Dam Bureau. The dam area was reconstructed; the property owner looked to provide a small area for formal parking and some parking up by the dam. The survey has been completed and we are looking to move forward. This would secure a permanent access opportunity.

8. Merrymeeting Lake - 100% completed plan. Fish and Game has not submitted an application for a wetland's permit. There are still ongoing discussions on the waterline project that is going through the same area which also serves the Powder Mill Hatchery.

9. Lake Sunapee (Newbury) - Fish and Game has squared away with DOT what would be acceptable treatment for the Intersection off Birch Grove Road with Route 103. A letter has been sent to the Town of Newbury providing them that documentation, and we hope to meet with them in April. In March, we hope to meet with DES to go over the permitting project.

Chairman MacNeil asked Mr. Lynch about the area near Stinson Lake (a road to public waters). He informed the Board that this was a graveled access off the lake and noted to Dan that there were some very large rocks near the water. Dan was familiar with this and explained what he had seen after making two trips to Stinson Lake. F&G is looking to make improvements to this area. F&G also needs to clear up a right-of-way issue a local store has in this area. In fall of 2005, Dan Lynch and Pat Tate from Fish and Game checked the site and at least some of the rocks had been removed (not by Fish and Game).

Out of 150 Roads to Public Water sites that were done, there are 15 that Fish and Game oversees and controls (federal money was brought to the table to do this). The USFWS and the AG's Office have recognized that we have a vested interest in those so we maintain them.

We do not have authority to circumvent what was set out by Executive Council for the other 135. Responsibility lies with the town. Vice Chair Quarles asked Dan, "You are not saying that you cannot take over roads to public waters sites?" Could the town deed it back? Dan did not know. However, the AG's Office has stated that Fish and Game cannot move forward on these anymore. Mr. Quarles thought there was an issue with DOT, and Mr. Lynch said that DOT does not have the authority to given them to anyone. Johanna Lyons stated that there would have to be an amendment to the original by road layout by Governor and Council to do so. Mr. Quarles questioned whether it was possible to put the town's maintenance responsibility back to the State.

Tom Quarles asked Dan Lynch if the Merrimack River site listed was Greeley Park, and it was confirmed. Mr. Quarles thought Dan's proposal of a comprehensive review of public access sites and needs state-wide was a great plan and asked the timeframe. Dan thought May and shared the some of the credit with Office of Energy and Planning because of their inventory database they shared with us. He reviewed some of the holes in the data to make it as accurate as possible, but without OEP's assistance it would be difficult to put all the information together. Rich Tichko will be following up with the other agencies (DRED, DES, DOT) and hopefully in the end it will be a useful tool for the Board.

Chairman MacNeil questioned how many years F&G published the Boat Access Map. Dan Lynch said F&G is looking to update it and distribute it again. They plan to make it even more useful.

5. Legislative Update - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil

Jared Teutsch was asked if he had any other bills of interest to discuss with the Board. He noted he had discussed a few of the bills already. The speed limit bill is still in the Transportation Committee and he believed they would exec that bill out. Chairman MacNeil asked him to keep him informed of the status of this bill.

Tom Quarles saw the proposed bill on changing the boating safety and certification requirement which would require an on the water test and Jared informed him the bill passed the committee and should be on the consent calendar the week of March 6, 2006 in the House. Jared asked Rep. Chaplin for additional information. Rep. Chaplin stated that HB 1463FN passed 16-0 with the idea of improving items for safety. Tom Quarles was surprised at this due to the cost that might be involved, but Rep. Chaplin said the hiring of 5 people was dropped out and amended so no additional state funds were required.

Jared Teutsch noted that the NHLA originally opposed the bill because canoes and kayaks would be required to carry flags. They did agree with safety education and Jared believes the flags are still part of the bill. Dan Lynch felt it would have to go to Finance because of the "FN" notation, however, Rep. Chaplin said there was now no dollar amount assigned to the bill.

Dan Lynch addressed HB 1426 as requested at the February meeting. It deals specifically with State land in the City of Concord to square away land owned by Brochu's Landscaping along Route 93. The owner was trying to gain access from one area of land to another. It does not deal with any access to the Merrimack River. There is a state boat access downstream.

7. Hobo Railroad - Mike Pillsbury/DOT

Mr. Pillsbury was not in attendance at the March meeting, however, Johanna Lyons, subcommittee member, addressed the Board. Johanna informed the Board that the subcommittee met. She provided Carol Barleon and Mike with short, targeted management plans so that Mike could start to look at how to frame a management plan of public access to bring to his Commissioner. It was suggested to put him on the agenda for the April meeting.

Mr. Quarles noted that at last month's meeting there was a fundamental question raised about the purchase of this land for wetlands mitigation plan in the mid-90s resulting in restrictions on this parcel. He questioned where that question stood and does it prevent any development in that area. Ms. Lyons read the minutes and did not understand that to be the issue. She clarified that it was a letter that went to Audubon that talked about needing a management plan for this property -- not an Audubon property but DOT property. They need to do a management plan for the property that has public access involving other agencies. There were some restrictions because portions were bought for wetlands mitigation. Tom asked if Audubon was supposed to participate in that plan, and Johanna replied, "No." Audubon just asked for information about the property. Tom Quarles' other issue was what is the extent of Hobo's lease? Johanna informed him that this will be all part of the plan, and it will be tied up all as one piece. Johanna Lyons will let Mike Pillsbury know he is on the April agenda. Tom asked if public access is going to be part of the plan because of the issues we have raised and was told it was because the original plan in 1995 was never completed. Ms. Lyons referred to page 30 in the brief discussion of the environmental assessment. Tom asked how big this parcel was. Dan thought it was about 2,800 feet of riverfront. Carol Barleon informed the Board that Mike Pillsbury does have a copy of the complete environmental assessment.

ADJOURNMENT

Dan Lynch moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Jacquie Colburn. Unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:15 a.m.
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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
February 6, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman, Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman, Carol Barleon, OEP; Paul Blizzard, Roger J. Bellerose, Sr., B. David Bryan, Rep. Duncan Chaplin; Jacquie Colburn, DES; Shari Colby, DRED; Cheryl Killam, Gov's Commission on Disability; Michael Pillsbury, DOT; and Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Members Absent: David Barrett, DOS; John Cowan, Maynard Goldman, NHLA; Brian Giles, Patricia Goodridge, Senator John T. Gallus, Senator Joseph D. Kenney, and Representative John Klose

Audience Members: Paul Goodwin and Jared Teutsch, NH Lakes Association

*****************************************************************************

MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen McNeil welcomed the newest member to the Board, Representative Duncan Chaplin, who formally replaced Representative Howard C. Dickinson per a written memo from House Speaker W. Douglas Scamman, Jr. dated August 2, 2005.

Vice Chair Quarles recognized and welcomed new Board member B. David Bryan. This appointment was the result of new legislation passed last year for the purpose of creating a position for "coastal estuarine interests." Mr. Bryant confirmed that he was a member of the Coastal Conservation Commission and explained its purpose. Mr. Bellerose asked Mr. Bryant to comment on Hilton Park and stated that everyone was disappointed that we would not see an "all tides" dock.

Mike Pillsbury from DOT was reintroduced as the new member to the Board from The Department of Transportation for anyone who had not yet met him.

Further, Mr. Quarles introduced guest speaker Paul Goodwin who is here to discuss the marine contractors' suggested recommendations to Harilla's Landing.

The meeting was called to order at 9:03 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the January 9, 2006, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Corrections to the January 9, 2006 meetings were as follows:

Page 2, paragraph 3, 1st sentence; add the words . . . the "New Hampshire" Division of Historical Resources Assessment was completed and submitted to (delete "them") the NH Division of Historical Resources which did find the Laconia compound eligible for designation.
Page 2, paragraph last paragraph - change Sally Holden to "Sally Holder."
Page 4, 1st paragraph, 3rd line down; - reword . . . "Further, legislation passed last year which removed those properties purchased with state and highway funds from the CORD review process, has caused some confusion."
Page 6, item#7, 5 lines from the bottom; remove the "s" Mr. Blizzard's name. Next sentence; change Mr. Blizzard to "Mr. Lynch also informed the Board . . ."
Page 9, 3rd paragraph from the bottom; it was agreed that the minutes would stand as they were written in that the . . . "sign has not been there for 6-7 years."

Mr. Bellerose moved to approve the minutes of January 9, 2006; seconded by Brian Giles. The Board approved the minutes with one member abstaining (Carol Barleon).

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Jacquie Colburn gave an update on the working group meeting of January 20, 2006. The following items were discussed at that meeting: As reflected in the January 9, 2006 minutes, the Historical Resources Assessment was completed and submitted to the New Hampshire Division of Historical Resources and the Laconia compound is determined to be eligible for designation. Approval was received to remove the Butler building. With that approval, Fish and Game has been working on a bid package. There is a meeting scheduled for potential contractors to bid on later in February. DES and F&G have been corresponding regularly via e-mail to confirm that all necessary information is shared with contractors and available to them. DES continues to work with Camp, Dresser & McKee to finalize what is necessary to complete requirements for the NH Historical Resources Division. The Fish and Game Department continues to work on the need for review and assessment.

Prior to the last working group meeting, Fish and Game mailed the waterfront design done by Fay Spofford & Thorndike (FST) to the various permitting agencies. Jacquie left word with Rich Tichko of F&G to coordinate a permitting agency meeting to make a decision on the waterfront design. Prior to the removal of the Butler Building, a demolition permit will be required from the City of Laconia. Sally Holder of the Winnisquam Lake Association offered her assistance in getting those permits and working with F&G in getting them recorded with the City of Laconia. Also, Rich Tichko informed the working group that Fish and Game will have to attend a City of Laconia Planning Board or Council meeting because of the passage of RSA 674; Change of Use. Because of this new law, Fish and Game will need to notify local community of this "Change of Use" on this property. The next working group meeting is scheduled for Friday, March 3.

Vice Chair Quarles asked if going before the Planning Board was an informational process or an approval process and Ms. Colburn referred his question to Fish and Game. Mr. Lynch felt that it was more a notification process. Further, he was not sure we even needed to take any action under RSA 674. Mr. Lynch noted that an Open House was held within walking distance of the location to showcase the concept of the project and to identify the intent of the land acquisition. Dan Lynch said F&G was looking for clarification from the Attorney General's Office as to whether this meets the requirements of that statute.

In January, Dan Lynch informed the Board that F&G had received a memo from FST that laid out waterfront structural options and the matching dredging area that would be required, which were sent to federal FEMA, OESP (state-side of FEMA), NH DES, Army Corps of Engineers, USFWS (Federal Aid Division) and the NH Division of Historical Resources. The focus was to get pre-comments on a preferred waterfront option because the waterfront will dictate what will occur on the rest of the site in terms of grades for the parking area. The preferred alternative is to have a wharf-type design which is in keeping with the atmosphere in that section of the City. Across the river is a wharf-type design for Martel's facility. The design allows for no significant impact to the floodway capacities in the river channel. Comments have been received back from FEMA and OSEP. They agreed that the wharf-type option seems to be the best as it would allow for maintaining the current amount of floodway capacity. They are looking at putting in a ramp (which is setback and cut into the bank) and a double wide floating dock. Upstream to the property line and on downstream to the property would be the open wharf. Boats would be able to launch, move their boat, tie off and go park their vehicle. F&G has received some velocity information from The Department of Environmental Services/Dam Bureau; however, they are still looking for more input from the Army Corps of Engineers and Dept of Environmental Services.

Dan Lynch explained that no dock borings had been done. Based on boring information, the original planning was problematic. It was determined that the sheet piling would not be down far enough.

Mr. Giles asked Mr. Lynch to explain the wharf configurations and traffic patterns as the river was not too wide on that part of the river. Mr. Lynch explained that there are no docks coming out on Martel's side. The impact in terms of narrowing would not create a traffic situation. In terms of the volume of activity in that channel, right now Fish and Game leases the parking area that supplies 42 vehicle and trailer spaces. F&G will be reducing the parking area by 11 trailer spaces. Mr. Bellerose stated that most traffic would be downstream. The ramp is slated to be installed on the north side of the F&G property.

3. Update on Harilla's Landing - Vice Chairman Thomas Quarles

Vice Chair Tom Quarles reviewed the background of the public Open House held last August, which included DOT Commissioner Carol Murray, F&G Executive Director Lee Perry as well as residents, boat users, and an area contractors group to discuss ways to best refurbish this access site and meet all the users' needs. As a result of that meeting, we agreed that the contractors group would meet and come up with a conceptual design plan that would address their needs and have space for all other user groups; then meet with DOT and F&G and move forward with renovating this contractor's area as soon as possible.

Mr. Quarles introduced Mr. Paul Goodwin of Watermark Marine Construction, representing the contractors group, to review their working plan. Mr. Goodwin distributed copies of their proposed plans and gave a brief history of his personal involvement of this site over the years. Mr. Goodwin reviewed the scanned DOT map which the group used as a guide in planning out their proposal. He explained what you would see as you rode down into the site and that the right side of the dock appeared to cross the property line between the State and Harilla's Landing Yacht Club. The dock area near the existing launch ramp has a retaining wall with good water depth. He explained the "T" shaped structure which is used by Sandy Island is in rough shape. Where the contour lines turn the corner the water is very deep. This would be very good for launching or docking a boat. He further pointed out to the left of this area the existing launching area. Two things further (1.) off the point are two electric cables that supply the island, which he was not sure where they went, and (2.) there are six rather large boulders that are potential dangers (data came off a DOT plan). It is estimated they are 3-4' below the surface.

Mr. Goodwin said the plan would need to separate commercial and residential because you cannot use federal funds for commercial use. He also talked about a proposed area for commercial access for loading and unloading only and a barge ramp. He also pointed to an area that may need dredging and rock removal. There would be delineation between the commercial and public side.

The contractors group concluded that they do not necessarily need docking space. He noted that the public uses the existing ramp for shopping, etc. Therefore, on the plan it was marked "proposed public access load and unload dock," so cars could pull up to the area. On the commercial side it was geared for a truck to come and go.

On the left hand side of the plan, Mr. Goodwin referred to the concrete pad. He asked Mr. Quarles to clarify if this was abutting someone's property. Mr. Quarles clarified that the abutter to the east complained about those docks because if you naturally draw their property line into the water there is an encroachment. As part of a survey, it was noted that the Yacht Club has a corner of their property in this area. Mr. Quarles said it has turned out not to be as much of a problem as anticipated.

Moving forward, wetlands permits would have to be applied for. You would need DES permission for rock removal. If Harilla's Yacht Club and the State were both applicants, the permitting will be easier.

Mr. Goodwin stated that a lot of erosion has occurred over the last 20 years to the area and the dock. He was guessing that water erosion from the road has caused a lot of damage.

Before opening for comments, Vice Chair Quarles reviewed the goals first established in August for this project. There was consensus from the beginning that there were problems, but if the separation from the commercial from the general public users could be identified and accounted for in the conceptual plan then we could have the contractors take over on an "in-kind" basis to do the work on their site. Before this, you need a conceptual plan and a buy-in from the agencies involved. This is the direction we hoped to move toward. In terms of the property line issues, the conceptual agreement from the Yacht Club is to do the land swap which would take a portion of land near the shoreline where there are some of the Yacht Club's seasonal docks. In concept, they have agreed to swap all that land (which includes the concrete pad on the diagram) with the sliver of land they are encroaching on. They still need access to the seasonal docks (condo owners own these docks); therefore, we would need to keep road access available in the plans while at the same time using that land for our purposes as public access.

Mr. Quarles was impressed with Mr. Goodwin's concept and presentation. He did ask about the electrical substation as shown on the map. Mr. Goodwin believed there were actually two and showed where he thought they were located. He believes that in the wetland area near the wharf there is one old cable that is not connected. He believes it is owned by NH Coop not Public Service. He offered his services as well as those of the group to assist in getting the permitting process in place.

In looking at the plan, Roger Bellerose had a wetlands question dealing with the left of the launch area where there used to be a retaining wall. The Board was informed that it was actually filled in. Mr. Goodwin noted that it is actually paved quite close to the dock.

Board members questioned what the next steps were for moving forward with this project.

Mr. Quarles clarified that at the meeting in August it was made clear to attendees that because of the federal funding requirements that this site be open 24 hours per day to recreational boaters and fishermen and that the prime parking would be reserved for those intermittent, temporary users. It could not be used by Yacht Club people, island owners or others in the area. He did not hear any protests at the meeting, though this does not mean there will not be problems. At various times in the summer (referenced DOT photos) parking is a mess and will need to be policed. The town at this time enforces parking and will tow a trailer that is not registered. The non-recreational attendees at the meeting knew if they were going to park for more than a temporary loading and unloading basis, they would have to park off the F&G site onto the state area maintained by DOT. We also talked about the 50' (25' from center line) right-of-way on the road which would give enough space for head-in parking. It is a big issue but not insurmountable. The next step would be to push the two departments (DOT and F&G). In the last year that we have been working on this site, neither department has taken the lead. It is now time to get an engineer to sit down and start to do assessments and concepts. Now that we do have a conceptual design by a contractor, we will need to hear back from the departments through Commissioner Murray and Director Perry so that this site is on F&G's radar along with Sunapee and Winnisquam.

Mr. Bellerose felt it would be advantageous if we could isolate and remove the boulders. Mr. Goodwin felt that decision would be up to DOT because they are the applicant and own the land. He felt that everyone could help get the work done. Mr. Goodwin told Chairman McNeil he had the equipment to remove the rocks. Dig-Safe cannot help because they do not chart electrical cables in the water.

Chairman MacNeil said we could not proceed without the two departments (DOT & F&G) on board.

Tom Quarles reminded the Board that Mike Burlage was the DOT contact before he left for active military duty. So far there is no replacement from DOT. He did note that Mark Morrell from DOT's Gilford District had been very actively involved on the project and that there had been a couple of meetings with DOT attorneys in the past.

Mr. Pillsbury was not aware of DOT's involvement but offered to look at the files and work with Mr. Quarles.

Dan Lynch praised the contractor group's design. He felt that Fish and Game has no authority because DOT owns the land. In terms of providing the funding, we have state boat access funds and access to federal funds. Tom Quarles has laid out what activities exist for federal money but he was not sure if the premise of the state wide boat access fund is to fund commercial activity. F&G could start to initiate an answer to this question with our representative at the Attorney General's Office. He did feel there are in-house issues that DOT needs to work out first to clear up the land issues.

Mr. Lynch clarified for Mr. Quarles that Fish and Game can supply just funds having done so in the past for other projects done by other agencies. Mr. Lynch was familiar with federal eligibility and suggested as we move forward we could look at improved plans and designs and to get clarification of the statute on what we can do with the public water access fund (is any intended for commercial). Identify what that money can be use for and then what we don't have a funding source for, Paul Goodwin and his group might be willing to do.

In discussion with Paul Blizzard, Vice Chair Quarles did not see any insurmountable ownership issues with the Yacht Club to do the land swap. The state owns the underlying lake bed and we had DES representatives involved. As long as you can show this is a public purpose, DES will approve it. Federal funds do not allow for just commercial use. If it was mixed commercial and recreational use, they would consider funding. Mr. Quarles felt that three of the areas proposed by the contractors (from right to left on the map) would qualify but the fourth would clearly be a commercial use.

Assuming the funding did come from the access portion of F&G, Roger Bellerose asked Dan Lynch if F&G would take over maintenance, and Dan told him it would depend on who owned the site. This is something DOT needs to address in terms of property, and he cannot speak for them. Further, he was not sure if this project needed to go through the CORD process.

Paul Blizzard asked Paul Goodwin about parking usage and was told about 50% is people from the Islands. He explained that the Town of Moultonboro will only tow a car or trailer that is unregistered and that folks have been known to leave vehicles there all summer.

Mr. Goodwin informed the Board that for approximately 16 years his construction company has offered to help with this site, and offered to do it for free. Mr. Quarles felt there was considerable work to be done that must be above and beyond what his company would be able to do for free.

Tom Quarles clarified for Carol Barleon that it was not an option to use the current lot rented by contractors up the road. We had considered buying it for satellite parking but that is not going forward.

4. F&G Project Update - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Dan Lynch provided the Board with the Public Water Access Project Team Meeting January 26, 2006 Minutes as promised at the January 9th meeting. He reviewed the purpose of the monthly meetings and who generally attends from Fish and Game.

1. Baker River - After having received public input on a concept that was presented to the Town of Plymouth, Board of Selectmen, F&G is moving forward to obtain an amended wetland's permit to do the work. We have a power construction sequence laid out, final plans for the site, met with a representative from DES the first of February and now will be working to apply for an amended wetland's permit. F&G plans to do the retrofit on the facility over the next construction season.

2. Pleasant Lake (Deerfield) - Received the final plans in early January. F&G submitted wetland's permit 1st of February and expect to hear from DES soon. There is a mitigation component that F&G needs to comply with because of the wetland's delineation (part of the land we own will be left to meet the delineation requirements).

3. Merrymeeting Lake - 70% completed plan. There is a willing seller but we do not have a sale and purchase agreement signed for land to be used for the parking area. They are waiting for additional information on the proposal for the replacement of a water line to the Powder Mill Hatchery which is adjacent to the boat access facility. The consultant should have information in early February. Then we hope to have purchase and sales agreement, complete the land acquisition and move forward on submitting a wetland's application.

4. Baxter Lake - Contracted with the DES/Dam Bureau to do the work. The draw down was unable to be completed this fall, and we are looking to extend our completion date into early spring or fall so water can be lowered and the concrete logs put into place. The road going into the parking area is complete, ramp usable and base materials in place for concrete logs.

5. Orford - Discussion with AG's Office set for February 7 to finalize agreement with the town. The final discussions between town and their attorney have to do with the term of the lease agreement. The log ramps have a 30 year useful life and there was a question on when that begins and ends. If F&G made improvements in 20 years, would that restart the 30 year useful life. F&G has worked out something agreeable with the town but need to get the AG's approval.

6. Forest Lake (Winchester) - Historically, an access site to the lake. F&G had stocked the lake because this location had provided public access. The landowner wishes to maintain access to their area of back land. There would be a driveway area to the boat launch facility.

Brian Giles asked for comments on the work shown on the Mylar of the Hilton Park site. Mr. Lynch reviewed for Brian that back in the summer it was agreed between F&G and DOT that F&G's engineering firm would come up with some plans for repairs to the existing ramp such as quick set concrete to fix pot holes and class C stone to repair the sides of the ramps. These are the plans that were concluded and provided to the Turnpike Bureau. They are moving forward in obtaining the wetland's permit from Dept. of Environmental Services. Once that permit is received, F&G would facilitate getting the work completed. Mr. Pillsbury said it would be difficult to determine when to schedule the work until the wetland's permit is received which could be 2-3 months.

Chairman MacNeil asked if these items would be in the Fish and Game's Annual Report. Dan Lynch will get his report to Chairman MacNeil for inclusion.

5. Legislative Update - Chairman Allen K. MacNeil

Mr. MacNeil referenced a recently passed house bill relative to day and night lake speed on Lake Winnipesaukee and all the great ponds in the State of New Hampshire and now has been passed onto the Senate. The Chair has e-mailed the Speaker of the House and Senator Johnson for support. Mr. MacNeil asked Jared Teusch of the New Hampshire Lakes Association for comment. Mr. Teusch concurred that the bill did pass 193-139 February 2, 2006, and he encouraged continued support through the Senate. He stated that the bill is a retained bill from 2005, and will be heard by Senator Bob Letourneau and the Transportation Committee.

Mr. Teusch referenced HB 1684 (a NH Lakes Association bill) dealing with the leasing of state-owned waterfront property which is before Rep. Chandler's committee on Public Works in the House. A legislative committee is being created to look at a number of issues such as what are the roles of the Lakes Advisory Management Committee and Rivers Advisory Management Committee in the CORD process and what is PWAAB's role in commenting on the leasing of state-owned lake front property. RSA 228 allows for $25 per linear foot per year. NHLA feels that amount is too low, mainly because when that lease is granted that person's property value is increased 2-3 fold. He discussed the value of just leaving it alone. He will keep the Board advised of the status and e-mail the Chairman. The PWAAB secretary will supply him with e-mail addresses of the Board.

Vice Chair Quarles asked Jared about the House vote on HB 1684, and he did not know at this time. Originally, the bill had a moratorium and is no longer part of the bill. When Legislative Service drafted the final bill, they changed it from a study committee to a commission. NHLA did not want another commission looking into this; it only wanted the issue looked at by the law-makers. Hopefully, the bill will be changed back to a committee. There was some opposition to the bill from developers and attorneys.

Tom Quarles asked Jared the status of HB 1228 relative to the sale or lease of state-owned real estate, which requires state agencies to charge an administrative fee for costs incurred by the agency in preparing the sale or lease of real property, and he was informed that bill passed the Public Works Committee. It should then go to the Floor and back to Finance.

There is a third bill being presented by Rep. Gene Chandler (could not recall the HB number) that looks at the CORD process. HB 1684, HB 1228 and this third bill are all inter-related, and there is talk of integrating HB 1684 with Gene Chandler's bill. Rep. Chandler's bill is simply looking at the CORD process.

Vice Chair Quarles reviewed F&G's legislative list provided at last month's PWAAB meeting and felt there may be two other bills the Board might wish to review that might concern public waters. He asked for F&G to research and report back their findings. They were HB 1364 - establishing a commission to study the best use and possible transfer of certain state-owned land in the Town of Brentwood, and HB 1426 - granting a right-of-way to use parts of state-owned land in Concord within the I-93 corridor.

Dan Lynch informed him that HB 1364 dealt with Fish and Game property known as the Brentwood Game Farm, which up until December 2004 the University of New Hampshire used as part of their wildlife education classes and opted not to continue to utilize this facility. We have had discussion at F&G as to what we would do with the property. F&G has had calls from the town wishing to have it left as open space, looking to see if it could be sold to be used as a school, public safety complex or public works. The bill was submitted to see what could be done with it. At that time, we were looking to leave it as open space. Director Perry has testified the town is aware of this and to the best of his knowledge the bill was ITL; therefore, the bill is gone. Mr. Quarles asked if there was any public water on this property and was told no.

Dan Lynch was not familiar with HB 1426 but informed Mr. Quarles that he would have Fish and Game look into it.

Mr. Teusch informed the Board that he would keep the Board abreast of any upcoming legislation and plans to attend the PWAAB meetings on a regular basis.

6. Hobo Railroad - Mike Pillsbury/DOT

Mr. Pillsbury reviewed briefly the discussion that took place at the January 2006 meeting and distributed a survey map for the Board to review. The map showed the various right-of-ways, rail crossings and other areas as mentioned in previous meetings. Mike Pillsbury clarified previous questions about whether the State owned all the way from Route 175 to the river and he said it does. Its lot is bisected by the railroad and has an active rail line crossing which creates a lot of liability. The access road from Route 175 has an easement to the property used by the utility company.

In 1997 the Audubon Society requested an environmental assessment. Mike Pillsbury provided copies of DOT's April 9, 1997 response to Audubon, in which it referenced an attached environmental assessment of this parcel of land in Woodstock. Mr. Pillsbury believes the management plan was never finalized by the various state agencies.

Mike Pillsbury pointed out the location of the "Polar Express" on DOT's survey map for the Board. Chairman MacNeil said anyone traveling to Lincoln cannot miss it from the road. Mr. Pillsbury believes they have approval to be there but at the Chair's request offered to look further into this facility.

Vice Chair Quarles asked that DOT initiate working again on the 1995 management plan. It was determined the property was acquired at that time. Mr. Quarles noted that at the January meeting the Board requested a copy of the Hobo lease (not what they pay but what is their leasehold). Within this plan, the Board would like to know if Hobo Railroad has rights other than the railroad corridor. He further asked Mr. Pillsbury if DOT knew whether the Hobo Railroad uses the gravel pit. Chairman MacNeil thought it might be the town, but Mike Pillsbury said he would look into who used it and who has the rights to it.

Dan Lynch thought the lease might be null and void if this parcel was acquired for wetlands mitigation for Pemigewasset River projects if the page 30 of the environmental assessment document is correct. He was not sure if a lease to Hobo Railroad complicates the completion of a management plan. Tom Quarles assumed the railroad was there before DOT acquired the property. Mr. Pillsbury noted that not all 30 pages of the plan are attached to the Audubon letter of 1997; only those pages relative to wetland mitigation. Mr. Quarles felt the Board should have the full document and Mr. Pillsbury would check DOT archives.

Mr. Bellerose questioned the access across the property that showed power lines and was told there was a recorded deed. How does this relate to public use not Public Service? Mr. Pillsbury clarified that is why we are coming back to this discussion. It would be the owner and then the easements to it not a public road. We need to develop a plan to achieve access.

Tom Quarles suggested a Subcommittee work on this issue. Mike Pillsbury is the Subcommittee Chair, Johanna Lyons and Carol Barleon also volunteered to serve. It was opened to anyone else who wished to volunteer.

Annual Report - Chairman Allen MacNeil

Chairman MacNeil continues to work toward getting this finalized. We will supply electronic copies to the Board.

Cheryl Killam, Governor's Disability Commission, was inadvertently left off the PWAAB list. Coordinate with Public Affairs to be sure she is on-line.

CORD - State Owned Land, Surplus Review - Vice Chairman Tom Quarles

SLR 06-001 - Tom Quarles distributed copies of a new State Owned Land Surplus Review for the Town of Belmont that the Board will need to review and vote on at the March 6 meeting. Mr. Quarles said this was a very important project involving a proposed development on the shores of Lake Winnisquam near Mosquito Bridge which has been in the news and the Laconia Citizen. The article will be sent with the minutes for review. He referenced the map and subdivision plan of undeveloped land that would need a rail crossing in order to get to the shore for a docking system. This is similar to the 18 mile development in Meredith on Winnipesaukee. He felt this needs to be reviewed with great care because it would be taking undeveloped shoreline and transferring property ownership to a developer who stands to make large profits.

Tom reviewed the CORD process that is done through DES and asked Ms. Colburn if DES had their legal opinion from the AG's Office as to whether the LMAC or RMAC can veto a proposed state surplus land disposal. Jacquie Colburn had talked with Mike Walls previously, and she and Mike Couture hope to expedite a reply from the AG's Office.

Dan Lynch said that at the last CORD meeting he attended they had abstained from taking action on a surplus land disposal and actually went out on site. CORD was waiting for an opinion from the AG's Office on their role in the process.

Jacquie Colburn mentioned that Mary Ann Manoogian, Director/Office of Energy and Planning has resigned. Jack Ruderman is now Acting Director.

Carol Barleon moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Mike Pillsbury. Unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:20 a.m.

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PUBLIC WATER ACCESS ADVISORY BOARD MEETING MINUTES
January 9, 2006
9:00 a.m. - NH Fish and Game Headquarters

Members Present: Allen K. MacNeil, Chairman, Thomas Quarles, Esq., Vice Chairman, Jacquie Colburn, DES, Paul Blizzard, Roger J. Bellerose, Sr., B. David Bryan, Brian Giles, Maynard Goldman, NHLA, Cheryl Killam, Gov's Commission on Disability, Johanna Lyons, DRED, Michael Pillsbury, DOT, and Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Members Absent: Carol Barleon, OEP, David Barrett, DOS, John Cowan, Patricia Goodridge, Senator John T. Gallus, Representative John Klose, Senator Joseph D. Kenney, and Representative Howard C. Dickinson

Audience Members: Brian Lombard, Bureau of Rail & Transit (DOT), Gene Porter, ACBS Nashua,
and Don McGinley

*****************************************************************************

MEETING CONVENED

Chairman Allen McNeil welcomed everyone and introduced two new Board members of the Board; B. David Bryan of Coastal Conservation Commission and Michael Pillsbury from the Department of Transportation. Mr. MacNeil also introduced two guest speakers; Bryon Lombard, NHDOT Bureau of Rail and Transit, and Gene Porter of Nashua, Vice President of the Antique and Classic Boat Society International.

The meeting was called to order at 9:06 a.m.

AGENDA ITEMS

1. Approval of the December 5, 2005, Meeting Minutes - Allen MacNeil, Chairman, PWAAB

Corrections to the December 5, 2005 meetings were as follows:
Page 5, paragraph 4, first sentence; add the word "access" following the words "all tides."
Page 5, paragraph 8, first sentence; change . . . "me" to Director Perry to "meet" . . .
Attendance changes as follows: Brian Giles was in attendance. Johanna Lyons did not attend.

Vice Chairman Tom Quarles moved to approve the minutes of December 5, 2006; seconded by Paul Blizzard. Unanimously approved.

2. Update on Winnisquam Access Site - Jacquie Colburn, DES

Jacquie Colburn and Dan Lynch gave an update on the Winnisquam Access Site. It was confirmed that the F&G MOA had been signed and that Governor and Council approved Fish and Game's request for the acquisition of the City of Laconia parcel at the December 21, 2005 G&C meeting. Funds were conveyed to the City on December 23, 2005, and the deed was recorded. Fish and Game is now owner of the approximately 1.4 acres of land. Also, on December 21, 2005, the Governor and Council approved the MOA between The NH Fish and Game Department and the Department of Environmental Services for a portion of the Laconia compound in the area of the Wastewater Treatment Plant. This is part of the new parcel Fish and Game owns. Items surveyed for Laconia were registered with the Registry of Deeds. Attached to the MOA between DES and Fish and Game was a delineated plan of the site showing the area that would be managed by Fish and Game and the remaining area of the Wastewater Treatment Facility known as the Wastewater Compound. Coordination was done with folks at the Laconia compound to try to best meet their building access needs while still meeting our needs for a sufficient turning access to the boat access site.

Jacquie Colburn reviewed the environmental assessment for the Laconia project. Phase I and II was completed a few months ago. The two technical investigations have been completed and were favorable. Regarding site investigation, FST engineers/consultants are still working to put together plans. Dan Lynch handed Jacquie a packet of permitting information. She will be working with Fish and Game and FST to put together another on-site permitting meeting with all the permitting agencies to review what is proposed and to move forward with a wetlands permit, flood control permit, Corps of Engineers, and so forth.

Ms. Colburn reported that the Historical Resources Assessment was completed and submitted to them. The New Hampshire Division of Historical Resources did find the Laconia compound eligible for designation. We went through this process because the structures on site are more than 50 years old and because of the use of federal funds. Approval has been given to have the Butler Buildings removed, however, DES met with Historical Resources in mid-December and DES needs to do some additional paperwork relative to other structures on site. The Laconia site also has some piping work that needs to be done, and we need to know what and when work can be completed. We need to be sure we are in compliance with Section 106 of the federal law.

Jacquie Colburn asked Mr. Lynch about the NEPA review and assessment. As a result of the August Open House, Mr. Lynch noted that comments were compiled and a lot of the baseline work done. An environmental document needs to be submitted in order to apply for a federal grant. The final piece is a set of plans which are 90% completed. We need calculations done for floodway and floodplain analysis as part of this environmental document. Fish and Game hopes to meet with the USFWS representative who signs off on the grants as soon as possible to review the environmental documentation to ensure it answers their questions and to hopefully shorten the review time.

The next working group meeting is scheduled on site for Friday, January 20, 2006.

Dan Lynch informed Chairman MacNeil that Governor Lynch would like a ribbon cutting April 1, 2006. The consultants FST need 6-8 week to get a set of completed plans. In terms of federal aid, we need to answer the 12 questions on the NEPA Checklist. F&G would like to submit this checklist with the grant to shorten the approval process by 30 days. In that Fish and Game needs comments back from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Dan did not see an April 1 completion date but maybe an April 1 construction date.

It was noted that there is no replacement yet for Fred Towle of the Winnisquam Lakes Association, however, Jacquie Colburn informed the Board that his sister Sally Holder has stepped in and attended the last three or four meetings to assist with the site. Chairman MacNeil informed the Board that the Winnisquam Access site has been named in memory of Fred in thanks for his tireless efforts on this site. The plaque has already been purchased.

3. Update on Harilla's Landing - Vice Chairman Thomas Quarles

Vice Chair Tom Quarles was able to reach Paul Goodwin, one of a number of interested contractors in the area, who expressed a desire to make suggestions on Harilla's Landing. Mr. Goodwin has met with David Farley and one other contractor (Russell) and they preliminarily came up with an idea of taking a portion of the left side of the ramp as you are looking at the lake (the side away from Harilla's Landing). Mr. Quarles asked for a sketch, however, the contractors have not completed one, however, they plan to meet to come up with a more finalized plan and report back to him. If possible, Mr. Quarles asked for a representative to attend an upcoming PWAAB meeting.

4. Update on Plymouth Boat Ramp Project - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Baker River Site abutting the Smith Millennium Bridge - This site consist of a set of benches leading down to the water. The Public was not pleased with the original concept so with meetings on site and at least one meeting with the Board of Selectmen to present an alternative, Fish and Game proposed to change the benches, put in some stairs on each side as well as removable railings. Our construction crew has met with FST on the amended wetlands permit. In order to do this, F&G has to provide DES a construction sequence which has almost been worked out with FST and F&G. FST is working on final plans to receive these railings. The railings would be put in place in the latter part of the spring and taken out in late fall. F&G is looking to meet with FST to retrofit the site. Dan answered questions on the new concept of benches and stairs for the committee.

5. Annual Report - Chairman Allen MacNeil

Chairman MacNeil informed the Board that the PWAAB Annual Report for 2005 was almost completed. As soon as all the reports are submitted, he will compiled them and distribute the finalized report to Board members as well as to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House.

Mr. Bellerose referenced his report and reiterated that he felt the Governor should get involved in the Hilton Park site in terms of the land being transferred from DOT to DRED. Chairman MacNeil said he could not begin to speak for the Governor but offered to make reference to this suggestion in the Annual Report and/or meet with him to discuss it.

Johanna noted that DRED sites (Rye Harbor, etc.) in that area had been transferred to Ports and Harbors Authority. They maintain boat launches on the seacoast and she suggests we contact them.

6. CORD State Surplus Land Disposal - Vice Chairman Thomas Quarles

Vice Chair Quarles and Jacquie Colburn in coordination with the Lakes Management Advisory Committee (LMAC) and Rivers Management Advisory Committee (RMAC) met to review the State surplus land disposals. In the past, Mr. Frost from CORD has attended a few meetings to discuss some of these disposals but not on a regular basis. Our purpose was to get more involved and coordinate with DES and other related committees such as the 15 designated local river advisory committees under the RMAC. Further, legislation passed last year which removed those properties purchased with state and highway funds from the CORD review process, has caused some confusion. Both the LMAC and RMAC has the authority to review these projects and give their recommendations, and it is ambiguous in the statute if they recommend against such a surplus land disposal whether such a disposal can go forward despite the negative recommendation. That issue is before the Attorney General's Office for a decision. Jacquie has been working with DOT reps with how this whole process works.

Ms. Colburn felt that we were getting close to having a process in place as a result of this statutory change. We realize that unless we hear otherwise from the AGs Office, the LMAC and RMAC should still proceed with the understanding that according to their specific program statutes that the State shall not disposal of state surplus land until these two committee have had an opportunity to review and make recommendations. A memo has been drafted following a meeting with Bill Hauser and Mark Hemmerlein from DOT. They have been working very closely with DOT on this draft and have a process nearly in place which the LMAC and RMAC thinks is very workable that will allow us a timeframe to work with the local advisory committees to review and comment. Within a few weeks, Ms. Colburn hopes to have a memo from the LMAC and RMAC to forward to Commissioner Murray that states their recommended process and hopefully Commissioner Murray will concur. We would still have some surplus land reviews coming through CORD. Surplus lands not going through CORD would come from the DOT and go directly to the LMAC and RMAC. The other thing that we did include in that memo was an opportunity to pass this information onto the Public Water Access Advisory Board, which is referenced in that memo. When Steve Couture from DES returns from Iraq the end of January, he and Jacquie will do an initial review and forward onto the Chairman.

According to the statutes, Vice Chair Quarles stated that the PWAAB does not have a voice, but these agencies agree we should be consulted. As stated by Ms. Colburn, this memo will be put our Board on par with these two DES committees where we will get notice the same time as they do. This will put us on a tight turnaround of 30 days. Since we have only monthly meetings, we would probably need to leave any immediate decisions with Jacquie Colburn, Chairman MacNeil and/or Vice Chair Quarles.

In December, Tom Quarles received 6-7 lengthy e-mails on this subject from DOT. Only two of these e-mails impact public waters. Therefore, Mr. Quarles brought before the Board for action the following two CORD items:

Project SLR 050-018 Harts Location - Crawford Notch (easement)

In the White Mountain National Forest, the federal government has a camp site in the area of Harts Location. However, adjacent to the camp site is a state-owned rail corridor. The National Forest wants an easement across the state-owned rail corridor to access the Sawyer River, a tributory of the Saco River. There is already public access suitable to shore bank angler fishing. Vice Chair Quarles recommended that the PWAAB inform CORD that we approve proposed disposal with no further conditions or recommendations. The motion was made by Tom Quarles and seconded by Jacquie Colburn and opened for discussion.

Mr. Bellerose questioned where the Sawyer River was in relation to the Willard Mountain Trail and Mr. Quarles explained the location of the site on Route 302 beyond Bartlett and that the campsite was well past Attitash off Sawyer River Road to the left.

Maynard Goldman had no problem with the CORD request, however, as a matter of procedure, he felt it would be useful to the Board if these motions could be typed or written out in a brief one to three sentence explanation for review before action is taken. Mr. Quarles noted we did have a deadline on this request but suggested we could work something out for future requests.

Thomas Quarles moved that the Public Water Access Advisory Board advise CORD that it is in agreement with the disposal of state surplus land adjacent to the Sawyer River, Project# SLR 050-018. Seconded by Jacquie Colburn. Unanimously approved.

Project# SLR 05-0521 - Lamprey River, Epping

Mr. Quarles reviewed this project which involved a piece of land along the bank of the Lamprey River in Epping which is approximately 2 acres. In DOT's correspondence with the PWAAB, however, it was closer to 4 acres, and though the parcel is along the Lamprey River, it is not part of the river that is designated under the RMPP. The RMAC, however, still has jurisdiction to make a recommendation. This is a parcel that would be recommended to go from a state public use to a local public use. Mr. Quarles felt the Board might wish to discuss this site since it was being transferred from state ownership to town ownership which could possibly exclude non-residents.

Johanna opened the discussion by asking whether this request would include the entire parcel that includes the conservation area or would the parcel be restricted to just the railroad portion. Mr. Quarles clarified that this land (owned by the Bureau of Rail Transit) would be transferred from DOT to the Town of Epping. The Town will maintain it as conservation land.

Mr. Lombard stated that he was not actively involved in this particular site but knew it did not have an active rail line.

Brian Giles clarified that there is a rail to trail system that is possibly maintained by DRED or Fish and Game (old rail line) that goes from Portsmouth into Manchester. There is already a town conservation park on one side (20-30 acres). This parcel before the Board is just a small parcel between the rail line and the river. Mr. Giles stated there is a lot of history and background to this site, but felt it was a good move to put it in the hands of the town. It can then be part of the already existing town conservation land which is open to the public with no restrictions. Mr. Giles informed Chairman MacNeil that there were no fees charged to access this park. Mr. Lynch was in favor of having some deed restriction in place to assure that the parcel was open for general public access for fishing and boating. Otherwise, the town could take some other kind of action down the road.

Johanna Lyons and Cheryl Killam discussed taking the no fee out of the motion and recommended that there be a $1 or $2 fee. They felt the town should be able to make improvements to the site without having to go to the local taxpayers. Ms. Lyons agreed with Ms. Killam in that a small fee would allow the town to make improvements to accessibility if needed. Mr. Bellerose asked if the site was useable the way it is now. Mr. Giles informed him that it was a very narrow strip of land between the river and railroad with no road access to it so it does not lend itself for an area for a boat launch. It would be for riverbank fishing. It was requested that the Board amend the motion to ensure the area be open for general public recreational use. Daniel seconded the amended motion. With a show of hands, the amended motion passed.

Thomas Quarles moved that the PWAAB advise CORD that the Board is generally in support of this land transfer adjacent to the Lamprey River, Epping, as long as there is a deed restriction binding on the transferee, Town of Epping, that the land be open for public recreational use. Johanna Lyons seconded the motion. Unanimously approved.

7. Hilton Park Update - Daniel R. Lynch, Fish and Game

Mr. Lynch reported that Commissioner Murray and Executive Director Perry met relative to Hilton Park. He noted that the floating dock was removed about 2-3 years ago. It was removed because it needed repairs and was becoming costly to maintain. Prior to this the dock had some level of commercial use. A set of specs is being drawn up and the Marine Trades Association is going to donate the materials and labor to construct it. F&G will put it into place. This should re-establish this use. In terms of the existing ramp that is on site, a few months ago PWAAB asked F&G to meet with DOT to make remedial repairs to the ramp. We have a final set of stamped Mylar's for these repairs for DOT. F&G will be lending assistance to DOT to obtain a wetlands permit. Once the permit is received, F&G can initiate repairs. Tom Quarles asked if this floating dock would be adjacent to the access ramp and Dan Lynch explained the location. Mr. Lynch informed Mr. Blizzards that to his knowledge F&G Commissioner Glenn Normandeau was the only contact related to the Marine Trades Association. Mr. Lynch also informed the Board that he believed Ports and Harbors had been brought into the mix. There was a brief discussion on why it might make sense for Ports and Harbors to take care of the site. Mr. Bellerose was informed that there are no plans at this time to address "all tides" access.

8. Legislative Items - Daniel R. Lynch, Fish and Game

Mr. Lynch distributed copies of a 14 page handout compiled and reviewed by Fish and Game on "2006 Legislative Service Requests" as requested by PWAAB. The Board took a few minutes to review any items of interest. Copies will be mailed to any member not in attendance at the January meeting. The following LSRs were reviewed: 2474R, 2367R, 2812R and 2443R (HB1364). HB 1364 might be the only one the Board needs to follow but not participate in. Johanna Lyons questioned the next step, and it was suggested that a subcommittee be formed to track any bills. Mr. Quarles suggested that since nothing appeared to need immediately action, Board members could take some time before the February meeting to review and report back.

9. Fish and Game Matrix on Pending Access Site Projects - Daniel R. Lynch, F&G

Mr. Lynch had no additional information to provide the Board at this time. Once a month the access crew at Fish and Game meet to discuss the status of the various projects. The group was to meet December 22 and again in January. He will compile minutes of both those meetings for the Board to review at the February meeting.

10. Greely Park, Nashua - Gene Porter, VP, ACBSI

Chairman MacNeil introduced Mr. Gene Porter, Vice President of the Antique and Classic Boat Society International, to discuss a potential access site in Nashua. As a private citizen in Nashua, Mr. Porter explained that he has long been concerned about the lack of access to the lower portion of the Merrimack River for public use where there is about 15 miles of navigable water. Even though it once was an industrial area, it is quite primitive. He explained that there is a decrepit, dangerous boat ramp owned by the City of Nashua. He distributed a copy of pictures of the area for the Board to review and a map from the Chamber of Commerce of Nashua showing the area. His purpose for coming before this Board was to find any avenues or take suggestions on ways to continue to work with the City of Nashua and other interested parties to improve this access. To date he has been unsuccessful in sparking interest from local officials in this unused site. It is owned by the City and is in the lower part of Greeley Park. Greeley Park is the 2nd largest park in the City which extends east and west across Concord Street and across the railroad tracks. The boat ramp has a six foot drop off and is very dangerous to use. He had heard a few years ago that Fish and Game was working on a site, however, Mr. Lynch informed him that those plans had fallen through. Mr. Greely only heard about this Board two weeks ago and came to find out if this site was on the agenda as a potential site to be restored, and if not, how he can help get it on an active list.

Chairman MacNeil clarified that a former Board member had brought up a potential site on the Merrimack River in Merrimack. Mr. MacNeil informed Mr. Porter that the Board does have a program to work with communities. Unfortunately, due to a change in staff in Merrimack and here, it did not happen, and we do not know the status of the Merrimack site. Mr. Porter reviewed the various public officials he has tried to contact but to date has not made much progress. It appeared to Mr. Porter that the City of Nashua is focusing more on the project on the Nashua River and not the much larger Merrimack River.

Mr. Lynch's understanding of the Merrimack site, which is off the end of Greely Street in Merrimack, is that F&G has a land use agreement worked out with the Town. The Town has not signed off on it because the neighbors have expressed concern about the road into the site. You could not get a boat through easily due to an almost hairpin turn that swings back onto itself. The road then goes under a railroad trestle and into an open floodplain area to get out to the parcel. F&G had a concept plan all done for the town to showcase it to the town legislative body. Pending any means to address access to the road, F&G is still committed to performing the work on the riverfront by providing formal parking and a formalized ramp. Once the road issue is addressed, Mr. Lynch believes the town will sign off on the agreement. When leaving the site, you must almost turn on yourself to continue on the town road. An abutting landowner has concerns about folks coming onto his parcel to make that turn.

Mr. Lynch informed everyone that this site is on F&G's list as well as Greely Park (Merrimack River) in Nashua. In August, F&G's Boating Access Coordinator met with the City of Nashua to go over a land use agreement. There have also been meetings with the Lower Merrimack River Council which have indicated support. There are two issues the City has to work out before F&G can finalize an agreement; a railroad crossing to get from Greely Park through where the boat ramp is located, and a sewer main that goes through the site (a manhole issue). Mr. Lynch informed Mr. Quarles that the two individuals working on this for Nashua are the City Engineer and the Director of Parks.

Mr. Quarles asked Mr. Porter to clarify his earlier statement that the area he was referring to provided 15 miles of navigable access from Merrimack River just below the Budweiser Plant to Lowell, and Mr. Porter reaffirmed this statement.

The proposed Merrimack site Mr. Lynch discussed is north of Cromwell Falls which is just below Budweiser. This site is about where the old "toll site" used to be, therefore, it would not solve Mr. Porter's issue because it is above Cromwell Falls.

Mr. Quarles was aware of a car top access called the Depot Street Access site in Merrimack where you can carry a non-motorized boat (under the railroad). Mr. Lynch told them this was a different site owned by the town.

Mr. Quarles felt the site Mr. Porter referenced should be of fairly high priority to the Board. Mr. Porter noted you could access from Nashua to Lowell. There is also a commercial marina in Lowell. There are 100,000 people in the Nashua area who do not have access to this portion of the river. Mr. Quarles asked Mr. Porter about the parking situation at Greely Park, and he replied that he did not know what the requirements would be, however, he felt there was sufficient space for development. Mr. Lynch clarified that F&G is not the property owner so in terms of the railroad and sewer main the City needs to address those items. It was suggested that Mr. Porter continue to push the City to take action to refurbish this as an access site. It was noted that Fish and Game can enter into a long term lease (25-30 years - life of the project) with the City. F&G will develop and maintain it so it is beneficial to the City. Mr. Lynch did not want any misrepresentation on how fast this site could be accomplished in that it takes time and effort to deal with all the appropriate parties. It was suggested that one area Mr. Porter might begin would be to check on any of the title work with the City.

Mr. Porter expressed his dismay that the State of New Hampshire did not apply for any federal boating infrastructure grants considering the fuel taxes we pay. It was suggested that Mr. Porter speak to Jacquie Colburn about this issue. The Board offered their support to Mr. Porter should he have further questions and concerns.

11. Hobo Railroad, Woodstock -- Brian Lombard - Bureau of Rail & Transit

Chairman MacNeil began the discussion by informing members that he will be putting together a subcommittee to work on this public access issue. This item was a continuation from December's meeting when Don McGinley addressed the Board on the Hobo Railroad (access to the Pemigewasset River).

Mr. Lombard of DOT, Bureau of Rail & Transit, came before the Board to supply information forwarded to him by Mr. Burlage of DOT about questions raised on access to this property on Route 175 in Woodstock. Originally the question was why does DOT post "no trespassing" signs on this road. He was not sure if at one time the road was open. It was his understanding that between Rte 175 and the railroad tracks, the property is owned by DOT (purchased in 1983). He was not sure about the ownership of the land between the railroad and the river but would work to resolve this issue. This section is where the river has left the main channel which is quite a ways away from the railroad corridor. The main channel of the river has taken about 10' of banking a year. He noted also that NH Coop has moved one section of their utility poles. The access near Rte 175 is a dirt road. He also referred to poor sight distance as you come onto Rte 175. As far as he knows, the road is maintained by the railroad. They used to store some of their materials in the area as did the power company. There is a crossing there for their use. A far as creating a public crossing, we try to avoid it due to safety issues. If the Board wants to pursue it, we will work with them.

Mr. Quarles informed Mr. Lombard that at last month's meeting Don McGinley (a user of that river) came before the Board to present his concerns about the placement of "no trespassing" signs either by the DOT or the Hobo Railroad. He thought possibly the Hobo Railroad because this is the site for the Polar Express excursions over the holidays. Mr. Lombard thought that this was new.

Mr. Quarles felt this must be a change in use especially with the "no trespassing" signs. If it is state-owned land, it was his opinion that it should be open for vehicular access unless there is some safety issue. If you have an access site that does not get a lot of use, he did not see why the standard rail crossing signs could not be put up. He further felt there was a need for an access of this kind in this area. Mr. Quarles was interested in seeing a subcommittee go forward and also to find out who has the authority to put up the "no trespassing" signs and what are the rights of the Hobo Railroad relative to its lease and the State's right to public access. The Board does need to work within the rights of the Hobo Railroad but thought the Board needed to find out where we stood in view of public access.

Mr. Lombard noted that there use to be a cable across the road which has since been taken down. He believes it was posted that way because it was never set up for public access. The Hobo Railroad never crosses the tracks; it is only there to get to supplies. The crossing is a private one for the railroad. The land between the river and the track is not set up for parking.
He said there are three "no trespassing" signs up and when the pit was vacated it was posted (signs are pretty old). Mr. Quarles asked him if everything from the access road to the riverbank was state-owned land and Mr. Lombardo did not know. He noted that between the pit and Rte 175 was purchased by DOT in 1992.

Mr. McGinley noted there has always been a cable, but it has not been up during the summer months and the "no trespassing" sign has not been there for 6-7 years. He further referenced second hand information from an Amherst police officer familiar with the area who said it was a Hobo Railroad employee who put up the signs, cable and yellow tape and told him he couldn't be in the area. A new gravel road had been put in just before the crossing (150 yards to a completed Polar Express structure). The power pole is 75' back from the river. He volunteered to work as a citizen on the committee.

Tom Quarles recommended that we ask the Bureau of Rails to look at their title records, determine ownership, and to provide us with a copy of the Hobo Railroad lease. The Bureau of Rails does not own the bulk of the land, only owns on either side of the corridor. The access road would fall in that area.

Mike Pillsbury was concerned about what lands were under DOTs jurisdiction, and if they were to take the signs down, they could be opening liability issues. Chairman MacNeil asked Mr. Pillsbury if he would be willing to chair the subcommittee. Johanna Lyons volunteered to work on the subcommittee.

Tom Quarles moved to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Paul Blizzard. Unanimously approved. Meeting adjourned at 11:15 a.m.

It was noted that July 3rd meeting has been changed to July 10.

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