Town Committee on Squibnocket
October 21, 2014
Chilmark Town Hall Selectmen’s Meeting Room
Present: Jim Malkin (Chair), Allison Burger, Steve Flanders, Jane Slater, Janet Weidner, Dan Greenbaum, Ron Rappaport
Also Present: David Damroth, Barbara Lee, Chris Murphy, Rosalie Hornblower, Jay Walsh, Tom Wallace
Minutes of October 14, 2014 were adopted as amended.
Fall Town Meeting: Jim Malkin reported on last night’s Town Meeting, where he presented the progress report reviewed and approved by the Committee at its last meeting. The report asked for a non-binding straw vote to provide guidance to the Committee. The motion asks whether the Committee on Squibnocket should use its best efforts to attempt to complete its report for a Special Town Meeting this winter so as to take advantage of the $280,000 grant from the State of Massachusetts, which expires at the end of the current fiscal year. The Meeting voted by a large majority to approve the motion.
In response to questions from the audience, Jim Malkin clarified that the four areas of work listed in the Progress Report are local decisions. The Coastal officials in charge of the grant are interested in funding a local solution to the four specified features which together represent a “managed retreat”, and that funds could be used for completed and properly-invoiced work in the areas of 1) the relocation of the parking lot to a more stable location; 2) the expanded Town Beach for continued recreation; 3) Skiff access to Squibnocket Pond for recreation and commercial use; and 4) the removal of the revetment and return of the current parking lot to its prior state for both recreation and storm water flow benefits.
Parking Lot and Beach Matrix: Janet Weidner presented a matrix comparing various proposed and possible locations for a parking lot to serve a town bathing beach. The matrix compares many components of each proposed site, and lists required approval processes, visual impact, property requirements, "constructability" (which refers to the levels of challenge and disruption involved in the construction process), and financial considerations.
Access Road Alternatives Matrix: Dan Greenbaum introduced a matrix assessing environmental impacts, required approvals, visual impacts, property requirements, constructability and financial requirements of various access road alternatives.
Timeline and Committee Assignments: Committee members will review the matrices over the coming week and discuss their findings at their next meeting. The Committee discussed how to convey to Chilmark voters the thorough process they have followed and multiple factors assessed by the Committee leading up to a recommendation or recommendations. Janet Weidner noted that holding public briefing events prior to the Town Meeting vote had been helpful in the "Big House" regulation process. The Committee also discussed the possibility of public information mailings.
Dan Greenbaum was asked to develop a timeline to guide the upcoming work of the Committee, working backwards from late January 2015.
Jane Slater, assisted by Dan Greenbaum and Janet Weidner, will be the point person communicating with the coastal expert, while Alison Burger, assisted by Jim Malkin and Steve Flanders, will communicate with the environmental expert on behalf of the Committee.
Jim Malkin noted that the Committee's scope of work should be carefully targeted, avoiding unnecessary duplication of effort. For example, if it should turn out that the wetland delineation in existing proposals is uncontroversial, the Committee should not spend time on it. He asked Marina Lent to contact the SFHA and FoS LLC to request the records of a meeting held between their respective experts.
SFHA correspondence: The Committee reviewed correspondence from the SFHA.
All Other Business: Chris Murphy spoke to the principal of allowing a dune, once formed, to be naturally replenished. He emphasized that, if left alone, a dune would not require the kind of extensive replenishment and rebuilding referenced in some of the discussions of the Committee. He felt that protecting the dune from damage caused by excessive human (and canine) encroachment would go a long way towards allowing a dune to naturally maintain itself.
The next meeting will be on October 28,2014
The meeting was adjourned at 09:54.
Approved October 28, 2014