Meeting Minutes 10/13/2008

Friends of Dicken Woods General Assembly

DRAFT Minutes for the Monday, October 13, 2008 meeting at Dicken Elementary School

Members Present: Jim Boyd, Brian Cressman, Jack Eaton, Jason Frenzel, Jim and Sandra Foulke, Harry Gable, Stephanie Hunter, Diane Imredy, Debbie Johnson, Theresa Leite, Diane Macauley, Deb Norbotten, Marian Williams, Doug Wood.

Meeting was called to order at 7:02pm by Jack Eaton.

1. Old Business
A. Minutes. Tom Ivacko moved to approve the minutes from the June 2 meeting, Deb Norbotten seconded, no discussion and motion passed.

B. Financial Report. Deb said there hasn't been too much activity lately, and there is $5,467.91 in the bank now, after paying the State of Michigan $20, non profit Huron Valley membership $25, and $10 to Ann Arbor schools for meeting space for the year. A motion was made by Tom Ivacko to pay money due, it was seconded by Jim Boyd, and it passed.

2. Updates, Reports, and Discussion Items
A. Wood Chipping. Doug Wood said the city chipped all the wood removed during the Fall Work Day, but Jason Frenzel, from NAP, asked us to stop cutting more buckthorn because we have exceeded our annual chipping allotment of $250. Since then, Doug met with NAP staff, and they agreed to chip twice a year starting next year. We still have buckthorn to get rid of it this fall, and we have two choices: either don't do it, or pay for a city-approved contractor to chip more. Doug proposed authorizing another chipping this fall to get rid of the big buckthorn trees. There was discussion about buckthorn removal, what's used on the stumps (an ingredient in Roundup), and the need for education of neighbors about the invasive nature of buckthorn. Doug moved that DW authorize to pay a contractor up to $400 to chip one load of buckthorn, Tom seconded it, and the motion passed.

B. 42 North. Jack gave a brief overview, explaining that the approved plan was 25% smaller than the original project, and the developer has up to 3 years to start 42 North after the project was approved. Harry Gable said he appreciated all the effort put into 42 North by the group.

C. Citizen Participation Ordinance. Jack said the ordinance has now passed and is in effect, so PUDs and planned projects have to go to the neighbors within 500' to initiate one meeting at least before they can have the site plan approved. The bad news is that the ordinance is badly worded, but it should at least help get the notice out.

D. Grants Program for 2007-2008. Stephanie Hunter mentioned the bird count - 24 species counted - 2 new species this year, the third year the birds were officially counted. Stephanie said the Leslie Science Center will do all the programs for Dicken for $1,200, and the extra $300 can go to the Winter Walk. The kids and teachers all like the Leslie Science Center programs.

E. Special Grant Project. Stephanie said this project, using a special donation of $1,000, is almost done. The Leslie Science Center's project will show teachers how to teach kids about the woods. The project includes a new brochure, copies of which were handed out at this meeting, and a field guide to come out soon. It will also provide wooden posts as directional guides and boxes for the brochures. Jason said the brochures are easy to update. Tom congratulated Stephanie, and said all of these projects have been worthwhile.

F. Fall Stewardship Day. Doug said the turn out was good, and a lot was accomplished. We will continue to have fall work days every Sunday from 2-4 pm, since there is plenty to do in addition to cutting buckthorn. Jason thanked Doug and said this group is a model: self-sufficient, productive, functional, with positive interaction with the city. Doug also mentioned that he and Ray Hunter can now apply herbicide which helps the city's workload. He said this year there were 4 students who helped with the workday for their community service project. Jack said that Stephanie and Doug are the DW stewards and mostly responsible for getting the work done.

3. New Business
A. Ending FoDW membership in the South Maple Group. Jack said now we can focus our efforts on the woods and leave the politics to others. Tom made a motion for us to withdraw from the South Maple Group, Doug seconded, and it passed.

B. Winter Walk. Stephanie briefly talked about it, saying we will discuss it more at the next meeting. It will be scheduled sometime in February on a Tuesday, with Wednesday, or Thursday as backup days, depending on the weather.

C. Fund Raising. Naela Jenkins wasn't at the meeting, so Jack said he will talk with her about the Max & Erma's fundraiser. Deb said Whole Foods has some program along those lines, too. Tom will draft a general donation solicitation letter to the whole list.

D. Pine Lake Coop Area. Diane Macaulay discussed the Pine Lake Coop area at length. It surrounds her property, so she has been working in this area, in particular rehabilitating the pond with a group from the Pine Lake Coop and removing buckthorn.

E. Community Garden. The scheduled person didn't show up, so Jason talked about Project Grow and how they want to find new garden plots, and are looking for neighborhood support. One potential location is at South Maple Park. Jack said we won't pick a position because the park is fairly far from this area.

A move was made to close the meeting, it was seconded, no discussion and motion passed.

The meeting ended at 8:05 pm.

Minutes by Debbie Johnson.