Sunday, April 12, 2009

FWMB Region 8

This one is a long scroll~bpb

Minutes of the February 13, 2009
DEC Region 8, Headquarters, Avon
The meeting called to order at 6:05 PM by Chairman John Andrews

Chemung County Genesee County Livingston County
Stanley Neu Ray Cianfrini Ivan Davis

Monroe County Ontario County Orleans County
Marvin Vahue Dodie Huber Ken Rush
Jim DeMay Mike Elam
Gary Evans

Schuyler County Seneca County Steuben County
Delmar Blieler John Andrews Tom Ryan
John Updike Frank Sinicropi Dick Stephens
Royce Kilmer
Mike Warren

Wayne County Yates County Guests
Bill Lansing Keith Kappel Norm Auger
Gene VanDeusen Steve Castner Steve Bockleman
Steven LeRoy Dennis Race

Advisory NYSDEC
Cooperative Extension Webster Pearsall
Dave Thorp Lt. Frank Lauricella
Randy Nemecek
CFAB Mike Wasilco
Charlie Hancock

Izaak Walton
Steve Castner

Minutes: Minutes from the October 24, 2008 meeting were approved; VanDeusen/Evans

Correspondence: All correspondences were photocopied ands circulated during the meeting. Copies are available with meeting notes on file at DEC Avon.
County Reports:
Chemung County: Catharine Valley Trail project continues and may involve lands owned by the Chemung County Sportsmen Federation.

Genesee County: No Report

Livingston County: Question on the process to expand the rifle bill to include Livingston County. The proposal must be approved by the Board of Supervisors and Farm Bureau; then the Legislature. Staff was asked to contact the Army Corp of Engineers regarding the release of water from the Mt Morris Dam during pike season.

Monroe County: Lighting/reflector installations on Rte 65 to deter deer from highway seems to be working. Monroe County supports Rifle Bill up to Rtes 5 & 20.

Ontario County: Concern was raised regarding the cutting of hay on the Honeoye Inlet WMA during nesting season. The old contract did not have restrictive dates. The new agricultural agreement does; no cutting before June 1st. A special thanks was given to Wayne Housemen for moving the Rifle Bill. Ontario County is exploring the construction of a canoe/kayak launch site on the Canandaigua Outlet at the intersection of County Roads 4 & 10.

Orleans County: Orleans County Federation of Sportsmen, Inc’s annual meeting is March 28, 2009.

Schuyler County: A resolution to expand the rifle bill to include Schuyler County was passed. Working through the legislature is the next step.

Seneca County: No report

Steuben County: Passed a resolution to have funds from the licence fee increase support Venison Donation Program

Wayne County: Asked a deer take question. Asked a question on the Howland Bridge project for the Northern Montezuma WMA. Remains an active proposal should funding become available. Discussion on lawsuit regarding Reynolds Game Farm. Informed board that several bills are in front of both houses that impact sportsmen. Question on bear take in Region 8. Total of 98; 6 from the new areas.
Yates County: Passed two resolutions as follows: 1. Support hunting safety classes and 2. Increase in fines and penalties for hunting and fishing violations. Fishing Derby scheduled for June 27, 2009. Firearms safety course for instructors being organized by SCOPE; 4 day class.

Advisory Committee Reports:

Izaak Walton League: The NRCS wetland rehabilitation project in Branchport is complete.

Cornell Coop Ext: No report

CFAB: Habitat and Access stamps are not selling. Roughly $297,000 remains in the account. Promotion of the stamp by license sales agents remains a problem. Discussion ensued on a Habitat and Access button to help promote the program. Until Law is amended, the best means of promotion is through outreach. The Trail Patch program was discussed as a means to generate revenue. Currently a volunteer purchase program. Discussion ensued on whether the patch should mandatory. Such a proposal would require legislative action. Governor’s budget includes a $6 million Marine licence component and a trout and salmon stamp ($4 million). License fee increase package will sustain the Conservation Fund for roughly 2 ½ years. The fee increase of 2002 carried through to 2007. 120 Law enforcement personnel were moved off the Conservation Fund to the General Fund. Marine Licenses and the Trout and Salmon Stamp were not included in CFAB’s license fee increase package. An audit of the Conservation Fund is available on the DEC’s website. Deadline for federally mandated saltwater fishery registry is 2011. DECALS costs roughly $2 ½ million per year to operate. Age threshold for senior licenses now 70. Visit the DEC’s and NY Conservation Council’s websites for more information. (Note: Charlie Hancock provided electronic versions of CFAB’s Annual Report and the Conservation Fund Audit. This information is available by contacting Randy Nemecek at

NYSCC: No report

Farm Bureau: No Report.

Old Business: 1. 2009 Elections

Chairman John Andrews- Seneca
Vice-Chairman Jim DeMay - Ontario
Secretary Randy Nemecek - NYSDEC
State Board Legislative Rep. Dodie Huber - Ontario
State Board Alt. Legislative Rep. Wayne Housemen - Ontario
State Board Landowner Rep. Gary Evans - Ontario
State Board Alt. Landowner Rep. Royce Kilmer - Steuben
State Board Sportsmen Rep. Keith Kappel - Yates
Alternate Sportsmen Rep. Marc Osypian - Livingston
Old Business (cont.) 2. By-Laws

Article 2 of the proposed Region 8 By-Laws was proposed to be amended. Vahue/Demay.

Article 2 amended, By-Laws approved. VanDeusen/Vahue.

New Business: 1. Next meeting - April 17, 2009, 6:00Pm at the Villager Restaurant in Canandaigua. Meals will be paid out-of-pocket.
2. State Board report given by Gary Evans. Visit website for more information. Spring meeting Scheduled for March 26 & 27, 2009. Fall meeting scheduled for October 22 - 24, 2009, in Region 7
3. Discussion ensued on holding meetings on evenings other than on Friday. 4. Minimum of four meetings will be held per fiscal year.

NYSDEC Program Reports:

Natural Resources:

Staff to Participate in Yellow Ribbon Program

Regional Fish and Wildlife staff will participate in the New York State Naval and Military Affairs’ Yellow Ribbon Program designed to welcome back service men and women from overseas duties. Staff will host a display and discuss various Fish and Wildlife programs with the service men and women. Fisheries will offer the cooperative diary program to anyone interested in assisting the Department with surveying angling opportunities. Habitat pins from previous years will be given to service men and women free of charge. In addition, applications for a free sporting license will be available for those currently serving in active duty status.

Staff Meets with the Department of Transportation Regarding the Genesee Valley Greenway, Village of Mount Morris, Livingston County

Staff will met with the Department of Transportation (DOT) to discuss details of the proposed construction of a pedestrian bridge over the Genesee River, in the Village of Mount Morris, Livingston County. DOT plans to construct the bridge and a boat ramp during the Spring of 2009. Upon completion of the operation, the bridge will be become the property of the Department of Environmental Conservation. Of concern to staff are the costs associated with inspections and maintenance of the bridge. The Department continues to move toward transferring the entire trail to the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP). Once the transfer is complete, OPRHP will assume responsibility of the bridge.

Staff to Meet with Regional Department of Transportation Office

Staff will meet with Regional Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) representatives to discuss construction projects scheduled for 2009 and forecasts for the next five years. This meeting will center on activities in NYSDOT’s Region 5 sector which includes the central and northern area of the Department’s Region 8. The meeting is held on an annual basis and is a good opportunity to provide and exchange of information regarding stream protection, wetland issues, permit requirements and processes for dealing with solid and hazardous materials.
Western Finger Lakes, Open Space Priority Project, Canadice and Hemlock Lakes, Livingston and Ontario Counties

The Department remains optimistic that acquisition of the watershed lands surrounding Hemlock and Canadice Lakes will take place. Staff completed the deed descriptions in December 2008, which involved review of over 630 deeds. Canadice and Hemlock Lakes are last two Finger Lakes with largely undeveloped shorelines. The land is currently owned by the City of Rochester, who manages property primarily for watershed protection for drinking water purposes. The lands surrounding Canadice and Hemlock Lakes are also included in New York State’s 2006 Open Space Conservation Plan as a priority project and has been one of the Department’s highest acquisition priorities over the last 15 to 20 years. Department staff have invested considerable time and effort in developing a framework for acquisition.

Open Space Hearings Held, Region 8 Headquarters, Town of Avon, Livingston County

Public hearings were held to receive comment on the 2009 Draft New York State Open Space Conservation Plan. The hearings were held at the Department’s Regional Headquarters in Avon, Livingston County. A total of twenty-seven individuals attended the hearings with five providing public comments. Several questions were fielded by staff and a total of six comments were received at the hearings. The discussions and public comment were overwhelmingly supportive of the efforts by the Department and Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation in developing the draft Open Space Plan.

Schuyler County Proposes Land Swap in the Towns of Orange and Tyrone

During mid-2005 Schuyler County officials identified the parcel of land they would consider for a land swap with the Department for the construction of a radio tower needed to upgrade emergency communication capabilities. The county parcel consists of approximately 50 acres that is bounded on three sides by Coon Hollow State Forest in the Town of Orange. In exchange for this parcel the Department identified five suitable acres on the Sugar Hill State Forest in the Town of Tyrone for the construction of the tower. Deed descriptions and surveys were completed during 2006. The last remaining element to the transfer was the completion of an appraisal to confirm that the swap would be of benefit to the State of New York. After nearly two years of inactivity on this project, staff was contacted by Schuyler County indicating that an appraisal of the 50 acres had been completed and they wished to move the project forward. Staff will review the appraisal to confirm the above-mentioned benefit and forward our determination to Central Office to complete the transfer.

Division of Mineral Resources Audit

The Office of the State Comptroller (OSC) is conducting an audit the Division of Mineral Resources, Bureau of Oil and Gas Regulation. This review is a follow-up to an audit conducted in 2005 which had recommended minor changes to reviews of drilling permit applications and other methods of documentation. Part of OSC’s audit is a request for copies the permit process checklist and drilling inspection reports since January 2007.
Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement Scoping Sessions For Oil, Gas and Solution Mining Regulatory Program, Steuben and Chemung Counties.

Scoping sessions for the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) for the Oil, Gas and Solution Mining Regulatory Program, were held in the Village of Bath and City of Elmira in Steuben and Chemung Counties, respectively. The scope of the SGEIS will focus on gas well permit issuance for horizontal drilling and high-volume hydraulic fracturing operations in the Marcellus Shale formation and other low permeability gas reservoirs. The first session (Bath, Steuben County) was held on November 12, 2008. Over 100 people attended the session with 18 providing comment. Concerns focused primarily on air and water quality, water use and disposal along with employment and economic benefits. The turnout for the Elmira sessions (November 13, 2008) was slightly higher. The Scope was released to the public last week.


Public Fishing Rights and Fishing Access Sites

Due to ongoing budget issues all easement and acquisition activities for fishing sites are on hold.

State Wildlife Grant

The Region 8 State Wildlife Grant biologists received funding for a four year mussel study for the southwest and southeast lake Ontario Watersheds.

State of the Lake Meeting

The State of the Lake meeting will be held at RIT on March, 10, 2009 at 7:00 PM in Ingall auditorium.

Fisheries Field Season

Spring electro-fishing surveys dates have been set. Naples Creek will be held on March 19, 2009 at 9:00 AM. Cold Brook will be held on March 20, 2009 at 10:00 AM.


Deer Citizens Task Forces

Deer Citizens Task Forces (CTF) meetings will be held March/April in units 8A (Orleans, Monroe), 8F (Wayne, Monroe), and 8S (Seneca, Schuyler, Tompkins). Each CTF will be composed of representatives from several stakeholder groups including farmers, drivers, business and hunters (both organized sportsmen and general population). The CTF’s and the process for providing input will be advertised in local papers in each of the three units. The only item being considered at this time is the population level of deer in each unit.
Deer Reproductive Study

Work has started on the third year of a three-year study on the reproductive parameters of deer in the Southern Tier of Western New York and in the Albany area. Road-killed female deer are being examined for evidence of pregnancy, number and size (age) of fetuses, and nutritional state at the time of death. From the fetus age, average doe conception and projected fawning dates can be determined. The information collected will help DEC understand more about the reproductive contribution of does in differing parts of the state, and how harvest of this segment of the deer population affects overall management.

Internal Audit of Deer Cooperative Areas

The FWMA Cooperative Program provides free Conservationist subscriptions to cooperating landowners. The Cooperative Program has been idle in this region since roughly 1993, yet the landowners are still getting free subscriptions. We will be auditing the subscription list this spring to ensure that subscriptions are being properly distributed. This program is still available to landowners who would like to enter into an with DEC.

North American Wetland Conservation Act (NAWCA) Grant Approved
DEC and Duck Unlimited have been successfully awarded another NAWCA grant to continue the wetland restoration program in the Montezuma Wetlands Complex. This grant will provide over $600,000 in federal funds to restore the wetland habitats on recently acquired lands

Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area
DEC recently completed the purchase of the Ventimiglia parcel, adding over 200 acres to the Braddock Bay WMA. We are currently starting the bid process create an agricultural agreement to allow 125 acres to continue to be farmed. We will be using an $11,000 grant from the Migratory Bird Stamp Program to create grassland buffers on each side of the parcel.

Law Enforcement:

Budget also having an impact on Law Enforcement especially with overtime. Law Enforcement is currently exempt from mileage restrictions.

Hunting Related Shooting Incidents (HRSI)
12 HRSI’s were logged last hunting season. Three involved personal injuries. Genesee County involved a fatal incident during pheasant season. Yates County involved an incident while hunting coyotes. The third incident involved a tree stand.
Motion to adjourn: Vahue/Evans
Adjourn: 9:15 PM

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