TLA Board Meeting
February 6, 2024
Present: Grant Bogle, Rich Haupt, Eric Stoer, Russ Conklin, Carey Fiertz, David Mathus, Dan Kadlec, Dan Vogus, Jackie Blombach, Adam Mayer, Bill Barton, Pat Miller, Jean Bell, Erica Cohn
Grant began the meeting by thanking Erica and the fundraising team for over $100, 000 raised to fight hydrilla and recognized the hard work of Jackie, Russ and Rich for writing and submitting the DEEP AIS grant application.
Lake Management: The meeting started with Russ reviewing the 2023 lake management expenses of $137, 000, which was spent (50% paid by TLA, 50% paid by Salisbury) on water quality testing, aquatic plant surveys, and invasive plant herbicide treatments. 2024 lake management expenses are estimated to be ~$250, 000 which will pay for water quality testing, aquatic plant surveys (including locating beds of hydrilla), herbicide treatments and the purchase of benthic barriers, limno corrals and potential use of divers. The increased costs are driven by hydrilla treatments and initial efforts to eradicate curly leafed pond weed in West Twin. Discussion also included the recommendation that the passage way under the causeway bridge to IsolaBella be blocked by a barrier which would reduce the risk of hydrilla spreading to the north western cove of East Twin. Unfortunately, this barrier will prevent kayaks, canoes and paddle boards from passing under the bridge until such time as hydrilla is under control.
Lake Access: Grant gave an update on meeting with DEEP regarding regarding limiting trailer access from the state launch. The goal is to return this launch to a true “car top, carry in only”. The board will be updated as discussions with DEEP continue.
Bill Barton suggested four changes of the bylaws which were unanimously agreed upon:
- Change wording from senior VP to VP
- Change board terms from 4 years to 3 years, effective at the next election cycle
- Include “protection of the Twin Lakes watershed” as part of the mandate of the TLA.
- Revise the spending approval process which today requires a membership vote for any expense above $5000 to requiring “board approval of any expense above $25,000.”
The by-law changes will be presented to the membership at the June meeting and put to a vote either at that meeting or the Annual Meeting.
Officer and Board Elections: Bill will form a nominating committee and asked that all board members email him regarding their intentions regarding ongoing board service.
System Optimization: Grant updated the board regarding our meetings with DEKO Design about systems optimization and organization. An anonymous donor committed to paying the initial bill and the board unanimously agreed to hire Deko to help streamline Little Green Light, PayPal, the TLA website and membership. The board will also investigate ways to improve board communication by possibly using Board Effect software.
Treasurer’s Report: Jean Bell reviewed this year and last year’s budget, current account balances and the movement of TLA funds to Litchfield Bank. In addition, Jean has engaged a tax accounting service run out of Canaan as our needs and budget have increased. A suggestion to go to QuickBooks online was approved, which synchronizes with LGL. Jean will investigate a TLA credit card to be used for making purchases.
2024 Meeting Dates: The June TLA membership meeting is scheduled for June 22 and the Annual Meeting, Twin Lakes Day and picnic will be August 3. All meetings will be at Isola Bella.
Watershed Study: Long time TLA member and lake resident Peter Neely has agreed to the lead the study steering committee with the support of Adam Mayer. Any board member interested in assisting Peter and Adam should speak to Peter.
Communications: Dan will be working on an update letter to membership. In addition to an update on the numerous lake initiatives, it will include a “save the date” for a TLA Booz Cruise for the evening of July 20, 2024. Details of this event are still being developed.