December 14, 2016
Haines Building Mercer, Wisconsin
- Call to Order 6:05 PM by Jeff Malison, President
- Attendance: Jeff Malison, Tom Mowbray, Bill Stewart, Diane O’Krongly, Jim Kohl, Bill Ficek, Randy Schubert, Mike and Beth Myers
- Approval of minutes of meeting October 11, 2016 Bill Stewart, Secretary: Minutes were approved as presented.
- Treasurers Report, Tom Mowbray, Treasurer: The written report was reviewed and accepted as presented. We have $14,209.39 on hand. Full report is filed with the minutes.
- Committee Reports:
A. Jeff Malison presented a full list of our committees and the members of each. Complete list on file with minutes. Committee Chairs include:
Water Level: Jim Moore
Fish Management: Jeff Malison
Invasive Species: Diane OKrongly
Water Quality: Mike and Beth Myers
Newsletter, Website are chaired and staffed, Web Design to be dissolved
B . Invasive Species, Diane O”Krongly: Competition for grants may impact our professional advisers. Zack’s position may be in jeopardy. Also, we have “mystery snails” which seem benign.
C. Water Level: there was a meeting of those involved with the Rest Lake Dam Management. They now have a MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) for a four year agreement for operating the dam. No changes to the operation of this dam are expected. They will meet twice a year to discuss what has happened and what will happen.
There was discussion regarding the sturgeon population that may impact our flowage and the river. The Rest Lake MOU asks for a minimum flow into the river when the temperature of the water is about 50 degrees to accommodate spawning of sturgeon. Discussion included sturgeon fry and juveniles and creating a self-sustaining fishery.
Water level in the Flowage is high right now. The Fisher Lake dam has released its water.
Zach Lawson DNR with responsibilities for fisheries in Mercer Station is advocating for multiple stake holders calling for a larger winter drawdowns from time to time. Occasional severe winter drawdowns may reduce weeds, thereby reducing bass and bluegill populations, which in turn may increase the survival of walleye fry and young fingerlings. Chippewa Flowage has some experience with this. Multiple groups in the DNR have been discussing draw downs, but not with each other yet.
D. Water Quality, Mike and Beth Myers: Written report submitted detailing locations being sampled and the people doing the sampling at each and summarizing observations from 2016. Written report filed with minutes. 7 sites are being sampled. Chemistry, temperature and clarity data is given to the DNR for their data base. Iron County Land and Conservation and the DNR in Rhinelander are included too. AIS funding needs to be replaced. There has been concern about water testing downstream. This is very difficult.
Discussion about Act 55 which allows for 100 foot frontage lot sizes took place. This is likely to have little impact on the flowage since most homes on the Flowage are built mid-lot. This discussion might be appropriate for our website.
There is concern regarding funding for the water testing going forward. It costs about $250 a year for each site. Zach Lawson is working on this. More frequent Sechi Disc reading are requested.
E. ICLRA, Bill Ficek: Iron County Lakes and Rivers Association. Attendees seem to be mostly local residents. There was a presentation about fish populations. The organizations seems to be in good shape. Tom Mowbray offered that septic inspections has been a past issue for this organization. Bill Ficek mentioned that his term is expiring and we will need to have a candidate for Vice President at the annual meeting.
F. Communication and Education Committee: Committee met just prior to this meeting. We discussed who our target audience should include: members, board, general public, public officials, chambers of commerce and other not-for profits were mentioned.
We agreed that our primary focus is internal. What vehicle will give us the “best bang for our buck?” How can we drive traffic to our web page? Randy Schubert is interested in working with this. While traffic on our site may be seasonal we need to up-date year around. We wondered if a Facebook Page would have value. We see 3 tasks: e-blasts, web page and a web page promotor. Bill Stewart offered to explore Mail Chimp as a vehicle for e-blasts.
6 Other Business:
A: POA Signs: Our sign will be just a bit smaller than the fire number and may need 2 sets of holes because there are 2 different methods of post installation for fire numbers. We will get some with center punch and others with end punch. They will be distributed at the annual meeting in June. After that we will establish pick up points.
B: Document and Record Storage. Most things should be kept electronically going forward. Will we want to use “cloud” storage?
C: Promotion. Should we have a bi-fold or tri-fold brochure for free distribution at the libraries and chambers of commerce and in cabins of resorts?
D: the Excel Energy website features water levels for 3 new bodies of water. If you click on a project you can link through to the DNR site for that body of water.
E We will have a bill coming from our webmaster. We are developing a Paypal option for dues and donations.
F: Annual Meeting will be June 17 either at the Pines or Community Center.
G: Next meeting April 10 2017
Adjourned: 7:49 PM