Vol. II No. 13 7/1/2021
Notes from Select Board meeting June 24 via Zoom
submitted by Meryl Phair
- Roxanne McCaffrey, Chair
- Patrick White
- Chuck Cardillo
Also present: Michael Canales
- SB discussed hybrid meetings — that is, in person and Zoom. A host would be designated to monitor the chat while in Zoom format. Texting and chatting through Zoom by board and committee members would be prohibited. The policy was approved as read by McCaffrey by the select board.
- A question was raised by Anita Schwerner, a Stockbridge resident: would questions addressed to the boards be monitored through the Chat and via the Hand-raising functions on Zoom? Answer: yes. In the new hybrid format, speakers who are in person will be on screen and speakers in Zoom will clearly identify themselves as well.
- The Annual Entertainment license requested by Handcrafted Catering for events at 2 Depot Street owned by the Berkshire Railroad Scenic Museum Inc. The application was denied for the following reasons:
- The application failed to include a parking plan in accordance with the operational requirements.
- The application failed to include documentation of a floor plan depicting the use of outdoor space.
- Applicant failed to produce said documentation after multiple requests from the board.
- While the application was denied, the applicant can reapply if adequate changes are made to the application.
- A one-day alcohol license for Chesterwood Museum for an exhibit opening on July 9th 5pm -7pm was approved by the select board.
- One day alcohol licenses for Berkshire Botanical Garden for the following events: fundraiser on July 3rd 5pm - 8pm, rehearsal dinner July 16th 4pm -11pm, wedding July 17th 12-5pm, rehearsal dinner 23rd 5pm -10pm, wedding 25th 4pm - 11pm, wedding on July 30th 5pm -11pm. All dates were unanimously approved.
- The second homeowner's discussion session will be held on Thursday July 15th at 8am. Meeting will include department heads.
- The meeting moved to the Ice Glen discussion with Matt Boudreau, chair of the Stockbridge Agriculture and Forestry Commission (AFC) present in person and consultant Ken Gooch present via Zoom.
- The report from Gooch was reviewed by the board and confirmed an estimated $7,000 expense for the stem injection treatment of 38 ash trees in Ice Glen.
- Low chance of animals absorbing the preside treatment as it would be applied to the tree base. Gooch confirmed that as an internal injection, the only way it will act on the outside environment is if spilled.
- Boudreau stated the ash tree treatment would buy time for the AFC to develop a long-term stewardship plan of the Ice Glen Forest. Specifically, as within the next forty years, the climate will be more similar to that of the mid-Atlantic and changing climate will significantly affect forest management.
- The board approved treatment of ash trees as soon as possible after the July 1st date by a licensed forester.
- The item of establishing Ice Glen Forest as an Old Growth Forest through the Old Growth Forest Network was addressed. Lisa Bozzuto, AFC member present via Zoom, confirmed establishment is connected to an annual average increase of 10 hikers. Previous denial by SB establishing Ice Glen as an Old Growth Forest rescinded. Former SB was concerned about increase in tourists and hikers. This SB will address these concerns in a long-term stewardship plan by the AFC (Agriculture and Forestry Commission). SB approved establishing the Ice Glen Forest as an Old Growth Forest.
- Fundraising and grant initiatives will be moving forward for the Hemlock treatment.
- Recommendation from Gooch on 100 hemlock trees in the steep area of Ice Glen Forest in need of immediate treatment because they present a hazard for hikers, are heavily infested, and have smaller root systems leaving them more precarious. A second tier of culturally significant trees is located further back and not as much of a threat, but still requires treatment.
- Gooch will identify the first-priority trees and second-tier trees through a triage plan. Priority trees will then be treated with current funding. As needed more funding will be applied for the section tier of culturally significant trees and remaining trees.
- AFC will make a recommendation by July 12th for a forester knowledgeable on old growth forests to assist with the development of the long-term stewardship plan. The recommendation will be reviewed by SB at the July 15th meeting.
Flower at Stockbridge Bowl Association's Bullard Woods. Photo: Patrick White