All members please note the Action Items at the end of the minutes.
LEESVILLE LAKE ASSOCIATION
JANUARY 13, 2005
MEETING OF GENERAL MEMBERSHIP
President Stan Goldsmith called the meeting to order at 7:00 pm. Board members present were Stan Goldsmith, President, Sam Skillman, Vice President, Bill Wallace, Treasurer, Julia Moore, Secretary, Richard Beaton, Bill Morgan, Fred Tannehill, Butch Shaffer and Joe Weatherspoon. Absent were Dennis Boley and Gerry Caprario. Approximately 40+/- members were present.
Secretary Julia Moore reminded attendees minutes of all meetings are posted on the web site. She asked members to please feel free to contact her if they had any questions or concerns. She reminded attendees of the sign in sheets and said they only needed to sign in if they had not registered before or there were changes in the information. Julie also reported that Bedford Master Gardeners were putting on a series of spring seminars. The seminar on April 9, 9am – noon on Riparian Gardening and Water Quality might be of particular interest to LVL members. The cost was $8 and to call (540) 586-7675 if interested. Julie stressed to call soon as the seminars filled up quickly. Julie also said that LVL was interested in preparing a calendar with pictures of the lake and asked if any members had pictures to please forward them to her at email@example.com. In conclusion Julie thanked Linda Morgan and Jan Caprario for their help getting the most recent mailing done—without their help the mailing in mid December would have been difficult to get out.
Treasurer Bill Wallace reported that we have collected $13,233.80 from 260 member households and clean up day sponsorships and that the balance in our account is $5,506.93. Bill also reported that membership renewals are at about 76%.
Stan asked Bill Wallace to begin the committee reports.
Regarding Mileage Markers and Hazard to Navigation Markings, Bill reported that to date, AEP has not responded to our requests to support restoration, replacement and annual maintenance of existing mile markers.
In prior correspondence, the LVLA Board has called on AEP to endorse the need for governmental support for hazard markings required throughout Leesville Lake. To date, there has been no response to this request, as well.
In the interim, we have contacted the Wilmington, NC District Corps of Engineers and the 5th Coast Guard District in Portsmouth, VA to determine if support from either of those offices would be available.
Mr. Howard Varnum of the Wilmington District Corps of Engineers Office said that jurisdiction for Leesville Lake would fall under the U.S. Coast Guard. Mr. John Walters of the Coast Guard District Office in Portsmouth acknowledged that the Roanoke River and its impoundments, including Leesville Lake are deemed “navigable waters of the United States”, this distinction being based on the fact that the waters currently, or at one time in the past, supported interstate commerce. However, as Mr. Walters explained, by Federal Regulations, in particular Title 33 Code of Federal Regulation, Part 66, Section 66.05-100, the Coast Guard has designated Leesville Lake as navigable waters of the U.S. to be under the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth of Virginia for purposes of establishing private aids to navigation.
In this light, Mr. Walters went on to say there was “slim to no chance any Federal agency would support establishment of aids to navigation here on Leesville Lake. . . ..” He did note that we should assure that FERC has not made maintenance of aids to navigation a requirement of the Federal license AEP maintains to operate the lakes and dams in the SMPSP. Further, Mr. Walters assured us that the U.S. Coast Guard would be willing to consult on the propriety of any private aids that may be established here on Leesville Lake.
As chair of the Water Quality Committee Bill reported on two items:
On January 2, 2005, the Lynchburg News and Advance ran an article on an invasive plant threat that could be as serious a threat to the wetlands areas of the Middle Atlantic States, as the kudzu plant has been throughout the South. A reprint of this article is published on the LVLA web page.
The plant is called Phragmites Australis, pronounced (frag-MITE-eez), also known as the “Common Reed”. On-line references may be found at www.invasiveplants.net/phragmites, www.aquat1.ifas.ufl.edu/phraus.html, www.tncweeds.ucdavis.edu/esadocs/phraaust.html.
We are involved in ongoing discussion with the Wilmington District Office, Army Corps of Engineers to determine the feasibility of a hydrographic survey of Leesville Lake. .a necessary step to assessing the service life remaining at Leesville Dam.
Karin Carnevale began a question and discussion period regarding where we might see phragmites and how we might recognize the plant.
Richard Beaton reported that there was no progress yet on a map of the lake.
Stan asked Sam to continue by reporting on our efforts to form a TLAC like organization. Sam started by recapping our efforts and steps taken to encourage the counties to form a TLAC like organization. TLAC at SML is a quasi governmental organization. At SML the three counties in TLAC gave $275,000 toward management of the shoreline based on their percentage of shoreline. On Monday prior to this meeting he and Stan did a presentation for the county supervisors in Bedford County which was well received. Presentations for both Pittsylvania and Campbell Counties are scheduled for January 18th.
Before Sam began the presentation for this group, he went on to emphasize that is was very important that as a membership we should call and encourage supervisors to form the commission.
The Power Point presentation was titled “Why a “TLAC” Organization for Leesville Lake?” The slides and commentary covered debris on the lake, why LVLA was formed, the growth of LVLA, major issues that concern the membership, accomplishments to date, the future of Leesville Lake, and what we need from the counties.
After the presentation several members made suggestions regarding additional items to include or emphasize when the presentation is done for the county supervisors.
Stan then announced that FERC would be holding a scoping meeting to help identify issues that should be considered in AEP’s relicensing process. The scoping meetings would be held January 26th 3-5pm and continuing on the 27th at 9 am. The evening meeting on the 27th will begin at 7 pm. The meetings will be at First Baptist Church, 502 South Main St., Gretna, VA 24557. At the scoping meetings members of the public will have a maximum of 7 minutes each to give public testimony on issues related to relicensing.
Joe Weatherspoon reported that SML has 10 items they plan on presenting at the FERC meeting including 1. lake level and stream flow management, water protocols, also determine what is a safe level for Leesville; 2. water quality, impacts of construction, sewage systems, and desire of AEP to limit monitoring; 3. sedimentation, development of a hydraulic model of the lake; 4. shoreline stabilization at SML; 5. invasive weed control at SML; 6. wetlands preservation at SML; 6. navigation on SML; 8. public access and recreation at SML; 9. proposed revisions to the Shoreline Management Plan; and 10. debris management.
Stan will be making a presentation at the meeting on behalf of LVL but all interested parties are encouraged to attend if possible.
Continuing LVL Committee reports, Sam brought up lake clean up. He reported that an ad-hoc group had gotten together to brainstorm about possible methods of clean up. The question for the group was how can we effectively use what we have to keep our lake clean. Following are some of the ideas the group discussed:
JW Burton moved we approve up to $1,000 for Butch to do clean up. The motion was seconded and passed.
Stan reiterated what Sam had said earlier that pre presentation meetings with the counties and all indications from the supervisors were that we as a group needed to follow up with the counties to let them know this TLAC organization is important to us. Stan stressed the need for our input.
JW Burton suggested we phone or e-mail our members to encourage them to encourage county supervisors.
Dennis Maddox brought up that he still has no answer from AEP regarding the request of Terrapin Point of Homeowners Association regarding revamping an old public ramp. Dennis would like to see AEP have a specified time frame in which they would be required to respond to requests. Stan will intervene.
Joe Weatherspoon mentioned that by 8/15 we’re supposed to apply to have existing docks/structures grandfathered by AEP. There was some considerable surprise that no one had heard of this requirement previously. To get the forms needed Joe said we could to www.smithmtn.com, click on “Click here to view forms available”, and then click on “Documentation for Existing Nonconforming Dock Structure”. We will then get the form in a .pdf file format and can print it out. All the instructions are on the form.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:35pm.
FOLLOW-UP ACTION ITEMS
Julia B. Moore, Secretary
January 19, 2005