HAMILTON RESERVOIR ASSOCIATION NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 2002

MEETING DATES FOR 2003
HRA's first meeting will be on Saturday, May 31 and the second will be on August 23, at 9:00 - 10:30 a.m. Coffee and conversation will start at 8:30 a.m. Both meetings will be at Holland Elementary School on Sturbridge Road. All are invited.

WATER TESTING IN AUGUST
Although we were advised that the town had funds to test the lake, HRA learned mid summer that no testing had been done. The selectmen assured us that the testing would be done this fall. It was decided by the HRA to do our own testing. Tom Skowrya generously volunteered to test the reservoir in August. The Quabbin Analytical Lab was contacted and the lake was tested at the authorization of the executive board. At that time he tested five separate sites, two on the south side and 3 on the north side. He tested for e-coli after a very hot week with heavy boat traffic. The results were very surprising. The scores were 20, 30, 35, 30 and 20 which is excellent news as 150 is considered non-swim able. The town has $3000 in their budget for a full panel of tests which is done in early spring and again in late fall. The town is looking for a baseline result to monitor the lake over the long term.

TREASURER'S REPORT
Dianne Tufts, Treasurer, reported that the total funds as of 8/24 are $23,293.67.

BOARD NOTES
Jim McKenna announced that he was leaving the position of VP of Safety and recommended Ed Hughes to replace him. He also thanked Marilyn LaPlante for keeping the kiosks full and also thanked Deb Benveniste for helping with the grants. He offered his support to the new VP of Safety for as long as needed.

Dianne Tufts resigned the position of Treasurer after many years of service but also offered to help the new members of the executive board through the transition.

We'd like to thank Diane and Jim for their many years of service and contributions to the HRA.

EXECUTIVE BOARD ELECTIONS -The following is a list of elected officers:

President: Lynn Arnold (reelected)
VP of Safety: Ed Hughes
Secretary: Carol Rodrigues (reelected)
VP of Environment: Chris McCooe
Newsletter: Gayle Neff
Treasurer: Tom Sargent
Membership: Bob McFadden (reelected)


MEMBERSHIP
Jim McFadden announced that there are currently 180 members. Fourteen new members have joined this year. There were 66 members (households) in attendance for the August meeting.

WELL AND SEPTIC TESTING
At the last meeting in August the members voted to repeat our well water-testing program. The first one was held in the June meeting of 2001 and at that time 80 families tested their well water. Lee Lyman of Lycott Engineering, or if he is not available, another lab, will be asked to come to our spring meeting and provide testing cups for residents to take home and obtain a well water sampling and return that to the meeting. The lab will then send a confidential report to the resident. Also, in the works for the spring meeting, is information about septic testing. Look for more information on both in the spring newsletter.

POLICE PATROL THIS SUMMER
Acting Chief Gleason spoke about the summer police patrol of the lake. He apologized for the "fiasco" on the 4th of July weekend when the boat was inoperable and the Jet Ski was waiting for parts. He plans to continue coverage on both lakes into the middle of September. He also has plans to actively seek funding from the town to support the purchase of a Jet Ski and boat for next summer. This summer was relatively safe with no accidents reported. Acting Chief Gleason is currently pursuing a grant that would provide the town with funding for two full time officers for the next 3 to 4 years. He also announced that the police department would be moving to the basement of the town hall sometime this fall.

HRA would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Chief Kevin Gleason on his newly appointed position and let him know we feel he is doing a fine job!

HARBOR MASTERS
The town has appointed two Harbor Masters. They are Dora Metrelis and Jessie Goldbaum. Dora is on the south lake and Jessie on the north lake. They will spend their time educating people to the rules of the lake. Most of the people owning homes on the lake do know the rules but guests of homeowners and people using the lake for the day are often unaware of the rules. The Harbor Masters have no enforcement powers but will work with the officers and in an emergency; the police can use their boats to quickly get onto the lake.

LAKE SEEDING
The town contracted with Lycott in June to seed the lake. This seeding was extremely helpful, however thanks to a grant obtained by Lynn Arnold, President of HRA, with the support of the town, monies were received for an additional seeding for three specific weeds, which must be treated in late summer. Vallisneria (wildcelery), Watershield (Brasenia), Lily Pads, and sections of Phragmites were treated on August 21. The only restriction following this seeding was not to use lake water to irrigate lawns for 14 days. The timing for the seeding was important. Lycott guarantees his work. If you feel areas have not been covered sufficiently, please call the town and report the situation. Christine McCooe spoke with Lee Lycott at the LAPA workshop in Dalton, September 14th. He said "he could not use the chemical he wanted because of the spring fed areas near the lake, but he guaranteed his work and if needed he would have to retreat for Water Shield in the spring and it would be covered under guarantee. It may be too late to retreat areas now." These new weeds are coming into the lake via goose droppings and also from boaters bringing in seeds on their boats.

QUESTIONS AND ANWSERS
Selectmen Jim Wettlaufer and Earl Johnson answered question regarding the upkeep of private roads and also private deeded "rights of way". Private roads will be plowed. However, if abutters want work done they have to hire a contractor and have the improvements made. Selectman Wettlaufer reminded the members that the selectmen are available Wednesday evenings at the town hall after their regularly scheduled meeting to discuss any issue that arises. HRA members are encouraged to bring their concerns to this meeting. SEPTEMBER 2002

REMINDER
Check your mailing label on the newsletter. If it is dated 200l, your dues are not current.

STATE BOAT RAMP
It has become apparent that people are parking illegally at the north lake boat ramp. Currently there are parking spots for 14 cars and trailers. The police are ticketing any vehicle not in an approved spot, however with only a $25 fee many continue to park illegally. The parking fine will be increased to $100.

SOUTH LAKE RAMP
The south lake ramp is difficult to use. The selectmen are working with a state public access board to improve the ramp since the town does not have the equipment necessary to fix this ramp.

LAKE DRAW DOWN
The Conservation Commission has informed the HRA that the draw down will begin on 10/09/02, at a rate of 2 inches per day up to 24 inches maximum. There are many reasons for the draw down: weed control, property, maintenance, clean beach areas, dock and wall repairs.

If there are any questions or concerns please contact the Conservation Commission at the town hall. Tele: (413) 245-7108. The draw down could be postponed due to water levels and potential draught.

VP OF SAFETY REPORT
Ed Hughes is urging any property owner, voter or not, to try to attend the Special Town Meeting on September 30th at 7:00 PM. There are six articles on the warrant and one, the 6th article, directly relates to police business. His understanding is that it is a "no cost benefit to the town to IMPROVE POLICE PROTECTION over the next four years." It appears that the passage of the article is necessary for the town to be able to accept the funds.

LAPA-WEST 4TH ANNUAL WORKSHOP
Chris McCooe and Gayle Neff attended the workshop "Appreciating Your Water Resources" in Dalton, Ma. The session was very informative and pertinent info was obtained and will be looked at by the board. Another workshop will be held in Worcester, Ma. Saturday 9/21/02, and will also be attended by representatives of HRA. Reports will be available in the spring newsletter.

OTHER IMPORTANT TELEPHONE NUMBERS:

Holland Police - General - Tel. 413-245-0117
Emergency or to report a crime
Dial 911 or 413-245-7222

Holland Town Hall
413-245-7108
State Representative - Reed Hillman
Rep.ReedHillman@hou.state.ma.us
Room 156 - State House
Boston, MA 02133 Tel. 617-722-2256
Holland Town Barn
413-245-3276
State Senator Stephen Brewer
Sbrewer@senate.state.ma.us
Room 109 B - State House
Boston, MA 02133
Tel. 617-722-1540
Dept. of Environmental Protection
Western Region
436 Dwight Street
Springfield, MA 01103
Tel. 413-784-1100

Hotline for DEP 617-338-2255 or 1-800-462-0444 - Dep.infoline@state.ma.us

SEPTEMBER 2002

 

PO Box 17, Holland, MA 01521