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Open Space Conservancy Trust - Minutes     
Thursday, March 10, 2011

Call To Order:
 
Chairperson Debbie Bertlin called the meeting to order at 7:09 pm in the City Council Chambers of City Hall.
 
Roll Call:
 
Debbie Bertlin; Chairperson; Peter Guyer; Vice Chairperson; Don Cohen; Bob Thorpe, Secretary and Dan Grausz, Council Liaison were present. Elliot Newman and Tina Lanzinger were absent.
 
Staff Present:
 
Bruce Fletcher, Parks & Recreation Director
Paul West, Parks Natural Resource Coordinator
Alaine Sommargren, Natural Resource Specialist
Deborah Alexander, Senior Administrative Assistant
 
Minutes:

It was moved by Trustee Cohen, seconded by Trustee Guyer, to:
Approve the minutes of February 10, 2011 with the changes Trustee Cohen submitted by e-mail.
Motion passed 5-0
 
Appearances:
 
There were no public appearances.
 
Regular Business:

Letterboxing Update– Elliot Newman
Trustee Newman was absent, and therefore this item was not addressed.

Update on Engstrom Transfer– Bruce Fletcher
Director Bruce Fletcher reported that the title to the Engstrom Open Space has been transferred to the Open Space Conservancy Trust.

Update on Fiber Optics Project– Alaine Sommargren
Alaine Sommargren addressed some questions about the Fiber Optics Project that has been taking place adjacent to Pioneer Park along Island Crest Way and 68th. Alaine stated she was frequently at the project site with Wiseman Utilities during directional drilling to put in the fiber optic cables for the Mercer Island School District. Alaine explained that her role was to make sure there was no damage being done to the park during this work. She reported that the contractor was in the right-of-way the entire time. There are also a few new vaults in the right-of-way that were installed for access.
 
Trustee Cohen requested that projects adjacent to the park be brought to the attention of the Trust Board. Alaine and Paul explained that they received notice of project only days before the work was scheduled to begin and that the Parks & Recreation Department is not always notified of these kinds of projects that are in the right-of-way. Bruce Fletcher stated he would talk to Tim Stewart, the Director of DSG, to request earlier notification any projects happening in close proximity to parks.

Kiosk Area Landscape Plan Finalization– Paul West
Paul West presented a final drawing of the Kiosk Area design plan that was discussed at the December meeting. He also talked about the estimated costs and said it could be contracted out or done as an in-house project. Doing it in-house would be less expensive, but would take a little longer to implement. Staff recommends that we go forward with the plan as an in-house project.
 
Trustee Guyer asked for clarification on the type of seating being installed. Paul stated that the consensus was mixed height logs and a few half log benches. Trustee Newman asked if the composting toilet was omitted from this phase of the plan. Paul confirmed that it would be on hold pending a funding opportunity. There was also some discussion about the service frequency of the existing portable toilet.
 
Trustee Cohen asked what the funds would be used for if they were not being used for this project. Paul reported that a portion of the money would be used for trails. The other portion is designated for minor projects of this kind. Trustee Cohen asked if there will be other projects that cannot be completed as a result of undertaking this one. Paul responded that a project of this size would not prevent Parks from proceeding with the other projects. Trustee Cohen also asked about the material designated for the paved entry. Paul described it as permeable pavers, but explained that he would consult a contractor to find the best solution. Trustee Cohen requested that staff consult with the Trust Board before proceeding with the paving part of the project, and staff agreed to do so.
 
It was moved by Council Liaison Grausz, seconded by Trustee Thorpe, to:
Approve the landscape plan and authorize staff to proceed with implementation subject to coming back to the Trust Board with the alternatives as to the paving aspect.
Motion passed 5-0

Herbicide Protocol Report– Paul West
Paul West reviewed the staff report that was approved last year. Paul reported two uses of herbicide in Pioneer Park during 2010. One use was on invasive trees (predominantly holly and laurel) and the second was a spray application of Aquamaster®on yellow archangel. There was one patch of yellow archangel treated which exceeded the 5,000 square foot threshold stated in the protocol. The crew that was treating the patch had exceeded the threshold by the time staff realized the mistake.
 
The priority for herbicide application in 2010 was to control holly, per the Forest Health Survey. The treatment of these invasive trees did not require a lot of follow up work in 2011. Paul reported that he does not expect to do very much herbicide treatment in the coming years.
 
Chair Bertlin asked if there would be a need to replant the treated areas and Paul responded that, for the most part, native regeneration was expected. Trustee Cohen asked if it is possible to see the effectiveness of the treatment yet. Alaine Sommargren responded that it will be more clear in the summer, but that there is already substantial evidence that 90-95% of the laurel that was treated has been killed. The holly is a little more difficult to tell, but we should know more in the next 3 months or so. Trustee Cohen asked if there were any complaints or public comment about the treatment. Alaine reported that there was an occasional question regarding the signs posted about treated areas, and Paul reported that he fielded a few calls from citizens asking about how they could do the same on their properties. Trustee Cohen asked if staff could include effectiveness, problems and comments from park users when reporting on herbicide treatments. Staff agreed to do so.

Next Meeting Change of Date– Debbie Bertlin
Staff was notified by the City Manager’s office of a meeting conflict for the regularly scheduled meeting date for April. Staff suggested an alternative meeting date of Thursday, April 21st. There was some discussion about the work plan and various dates for rescheduling. Deborah Alexander will send out an e-mail to Trustees with a couple dates in an effort to establish a meeting date for April.
 
Chair Bertlin announced the Joint Training taking place on Wednesday, March 23rd. Trustee Cohen complimented Paul West on his presentation to Council on Monday, March 7th regarding the Biennial Open Space Progress Report.
 
Adjournment: 8:01 pm
 

 

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