Minutes - Conservation Committee

Conservation Committee minutes

June 5th 2018

Attendees: John Reynolds (Chair), Carol Beidleman, Tom Bredenberg, Tom Brimacombe, Jim Daniel, John Parker, Paul Butt, Pam Henline (ECIA Board Liaison),  Rob Egemeier (Secretary)

Excused Absenses - Cecil Rich and Jerry Gulseth

 Guests: Jody Price (Alternate Board Liaison), Craig Gleason, Jean Crawford,  Tron Person,  Betsy Walker, Mary Clark, Amelia Adair, Paul Fink, John Shields.

1.Minutes approved with Carol Beidleman's amendments (Jim Daniel motion, John Parker second)

Agenda approved (Tom Bradenberg motion, Paul Butt second).

  1.  Galisteo Basin: Pam Henline - Letter in support of Galisteo Basin Preserve was given to Commissioner Ed Moreno by ECIA Board.
  1.  Goats: Pam Henline- Goat program contractor, Amanita Thorpe, has been paid.

Resident response was very positive to the goats.   However, wildfire mitigation goals were not met. The goats did not eat last year's growth.     The goats probably came too early in the season.  Also Spring is coyote and Bobcat pupping season.  John Reynolds recommends that, in the future, they come in the fall before this year's vegetation dries up.   The third camp for the goat program was too close to Avenida Eldorado.   Bikepath users were being confronted by the guard dogs.   There were also some complaints that the goats had wandered onto private land.   However, boundary markers are hard to find.   A program is needed to better define the Greenbelt boundaries.    Residents were offered free marking tape to mark off their boundaries for the goat program, but few took advantage.   Total  cost  for the goat program was $10,000.

  1.  Frasco Access: Resident Jean Crawford said that lot #2 on  Frasco Terrace has been sold.  This lot controls the access from Frasco to the railroad path.   We do not have a designated access from the end of Frasco Terrace to the RR path.   She requested that we explore the possibility of doing a land swap to preserve access to RR path.   There is designated access to the Greenbelt from the end of Frasco Place, however the access is overgrown and not clearly marked.
  1.  Parking at railroad path and Vista Grande : Bill Schwent has allowed informal parking on his land on the Southwest corner of this intersection.    The ECIA board needs to meet with Mr. Schwent to see if there is a way to create a more formal parking easement.  County owns a 55 ft wide corridor on each side of Vista Grande.
  1.  The Santa Fe Southern tourist train will be starting up again in about 3 weeks. Some residents are concerned with fire issues.    ECIA Board needs to contact Santa Fe Southern to concerning fire issues such as dry vegetation along tracks and a spark arrestor.
  1.  Preserve Fire Danger: Jim Daniel – presented an outline covering the reasons to keep the Preserve open during fire season (see attached).   The Committee also noted that the only campfire remains that have been found have probably been made by homeless people.   Also, a majority of the Preserve is not fenced, so it is difficult to keep people out.   John Reynolds informed the Committee that the State of New Mexico provides liability coverage for fire fighting.  Some residents have mowed their entire lots for fire prevention.   This may not be helpful and removes wildlife habitat. Carol Beidleman will do a small article for ECIA Vistas on mowing on private lots.   A motion was make by Paul Butt and seconded by Carol Beidleman, “Conservation Committee recommends to the ECIA Board that the Preserve be kept open and will provide a document in support.”    The ECIA Board should collaborate with the Eldorado Fire Department to create a statement on fire policy for the Preserve and Greenbelts.
  1.  Trail 404 - The work days have accomplished everything except for one-half mile left to be done in Upper Cougar Canyon. Signs are needed at each access point, at stream crossings, and where the path is unclear.   A work day will be planned to put up the signs.   A fall work day will also be planned to complete the trail.

The rock supplies along Route 51 have been taken.

  1.  New projects: Preserve -   Tom Brimacombe recommended that a new trail could be put in alongside the 403 (401?) trail as a return from the 404.    The new trail would avoid issues with the growing head cut near the stock pond.   ECIA did make an agreement with PNM to allow improvement work along the 404 trail/road if necessary.

Tom Bredenberg has surveyed the fences in the 400 trail area.   In some canyon areas, the footings for the fences have been eroded away leaving sections of fence airborne and unstable.   He recommends that the first fence repairs should be done to the fence along Route 51.   A maintained fence would signify that the ECIA land is not open to trespass and is accessible only at designated points.

Greenbelt:    John Reynolds would like to plan a fall Trail project to flag South Los Alamos Park for a new trail.     Also, Greenbelt boundaries need to be more accurately located.    A fall workday will be planned to survey the fence.

Trail Stewards: tabled to next meeting.

Motion to adjourn by Paul Butt, Jim Daniel second.