Vol. III No. 12 6/15/2022
Notes from the Agriculture and Forestry Commission, June 6, Hybrid meeting
- Matt Boudreau, Chair
- Lisa Bozutto
- Erik Rasmussen
- Shelby Marshall
- Michelle Zhu and Aviva via Zoom
- May 2 minutes approved as written
- Treatment of trees in Ice Glen to begin June 7. Check that signage is in place alerting public. Ask consultant Ken Gooch to monitor and report.
- Farm workers Zhu and Aviva joined the meeting and discussed the difficulty of farm workers who relocate to the Berkshires to find housing. Cost is one issue — rent is often ½ their total income. Another issue is community, that is, racial and sexual diversity.
- The commission discussed ways to help — matching farm workers with housing, encourage residents to welcome workers to their homes and other possibilities.
- In anticipation of the SB appointing members to committees, commissions, and boards, Chair wished Rasmussen, Fredsall, and Marshall to let SB know they wish to be reappointed (Rasmussen) and made regular members (Fredsall and Marshall) creating a 5-member commission.
- Chair would place discussion of Stockbridge farmer's market on next meeting agenda. He preferred an evening market for folks going home from work. Will ask SB to hire someone to manage it
- Bozutto wanted to complete Tree City application and to ask SB to make a proclamation that Stockbridge is a Tree City before December 31, 2022
- Marshall introduced his serious objection to the logging that the Water Department does on a regular basis on the 370 acres surrounding the reservoir as part of "water shed management". Marshall could not imagine that cutting down the trees increased the quality of the water and said he was "seriously disturbed" by the practice.
- Chair said perhaps the Commission should develop a "land ethic" but was not inclined to interfere with a traditional plan — "a long-time ritual" — of the Water Department.
- Marshall said the ethic could be "eco-health, biodiversity, and climate change — that's it"
- Bozutto asked if they had any authority to impose a land ethic?
- Agreement that more people should be encouraged to come before the commission and the commission should perform site visits. Bozzuto (a member of Conservation Commission) sited long-standing Open Meeting rules about care not to deliberate during site visits. Marshall challenged that.
- Chair suggested they do not meet in July and August and reconvene in September. Agreed
Photo: Lionel Delevingne