Environmental Committee, Town Agendas & Minutes|

Chestertown Environmental Committee
 Minutes
In Person and Virtual
September 14, 2023  

In Attendance:  Jenny Freebery, Secethia Davis, Carole Trippe, Thomas Dietz, Joe Maisano, Brad Hollomon, David Sobers, Liz Peterson, Ford Schumann, Andy Goddard, Zoey Brookbank, Hope Clark, Michael Hudak, Margie Lance, and Peter Lems.

Meeting Overview

 Energy took center stage around Tom Dietz’ presentation on the status of energy saving projects in the town, present and future. The treasury update, composting efforts, the current state of recycling, and discussion of other efforts such as low mow zones, bat houses, and complimentary activities at WAC rounded out the evening.

 

Treasury Report

 

$1,300 is the remaining cash on hand. There was no expenditure to report this month.

 

Items of Note:

  • The potluck is September 23rd at 5:00 at Lucky Pick Farm at 218 Round Top Road- we will be tabling there.
  • On September 5th the town council voted to approve and adopt the Comprehensive Storm Water Run Off Plan as presented.
  • The Sustainable Maryland project is progressing as expected and is expected to be approved.
  • A flyer is needed for light bulb recycling for distribution at the farmers market booth.
  • The college is now recycling tennis balls and rubber shoes.
  • October 28 is mid-shore hazardous waste recycling day.
  • Homes are needed for the available bat houses.

 

Energy Committee

Tom’s presentation was very informative. Updates were provided on the items listed below. A copy of the presentation is attached. Tom Dietz is in discussion with the town council on several initiatives that our committee wholeheartedly supports.

  • Town remains committed to several energy initiatives:
    1. An Urban Grid solar array at the firehouse would have a payback of 6 months with the opportunity for a $50k grant offset.
    2. If the town does the project on its own, payback would be 5.5 years.
    3. 10% of the town budget is spent on energy ($400K).
    4. County and state landscape plans for solar farms overlap.
  • An irrigation plan is needed for plantings at solar arrays.
  • The solar array at the wastewater plant is owned by Tesla.
  • Energy audit.

Miscellaneous

  1. As always, members are encouraged to sign up for the Farmers’ Market CEC booth.
  2. The importance of supporting recycling in addition to composting was discussed.
    1. Town has no budget for composting.
      1. Suggestion was made for the town to buy in bulk and sell at cost.
    2. CEC could promote Shore Soils. Pick up is every two weeks.
    3. We could collect compost at the CEC booth at the market,
    4. Town has offered 1 or 2 acres at wastewater treatment plant for a composting program. Lot of organization would be required, such as vessels and rotation of static piles.
  3. The formation of grassland habitats at the wastewater treatment plant was discussed.
  4. Recycling in the town remains in flux. Some options:
    1. Town should go back out for bids,
    2. Ask current trash collector to bid on recycling collection,
    3. Contract MD Environmental Service?
    4. Town to resume providing the service as it has in the past.

 

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