ICB Minutes October 11, 2014

by Jane Ahrens

P.O. Box 464, Fishers Island, NY 06390
Tel: 631-788-7990
Email: ficommunityboard@gmail.com

ICB Meeting
Saturday, October 11, 2014
4:30 pm
Island Community Center

President John Spofford opened the meeting and announced that he had tendered his resignation as President earlier in the week. The ICB formed a Nominating Committee comprised of Tim Patterson, Heather Burnham, Tom O’Neil and Mark Gaumond to consider successors. Upon the recommendation of the Nominating Committee, the board unanimously elected Tom O’Neil to serve as president of the Island Community Board.

Speaking for the board, Tom O’Neil thanked John for all he has done for this island.   Tom then reported that he was honored to serve and was looking forward to working with the board and the entire Fishers Island community.

Utility Co
Chris Finan outlined some projects they have been working on over the last year. All 3 companies have begun mapping projects, the electric linemen have been working hard clearing rightaways that have been overlooked in the past, in addition to an ongoing pole replacement project. The telephone guys have been hard at work; one of the many projects is the old lead cables on the fort are being replaced. The main pic cable has been run, and they are working on splicing, next they will be replacing the boxes and doing the proper grounding. They will then be replacing the drops to the houses. The water company has made good progress this year identifying major leaks. Towards that goal they are researching and evaluating leak detection contractors so they can better understand the losses and budget those repairs in the coming years. The board has formed 2 working committees. To enable, research and follow through on some long term projects they are working on.   They are working on a USDA loan application for the backbone and internet switch replacement project, he expects to be filing for that in early 2015. Tom how much the loan would be for? Chris said depending on what they do it will be about 2.5 million dollars. Louisa asked what the terms of the loan will be? Chris said the percentage rate is approx. 3% but that they wouldn’t know the actual term until the loan was granted. Chris said that this would include bringing fiber to the island. Tim Patterson asked what the speed would be? Chris said that within 3000ft of a node it is achievable to get to 100 mbps but that would be dependent on what people wanted to pay for. Tom asked when the water contractors were coming onboard; Chris replied that it was dependent on board approval since it was a substantial amount of money.

FI Waste Management
Tim Patterson reported that a lot of interesting things have happened in the last year. Rob Goodwin is the newest commissioner bringing them back up to 5 commissioners. Rob will be serving until the end of December and will then run for re-election. There are 3 new Full-time employees, Annette Tourangeau, Sam Horn and Wayne Doucette along with Beth Stern has been with us for 20 years! In the past Wayne had been paid to train the employees on the machines and to maintain the equipment and now he is fixing things that normally would have waited for someone to come from the mainland. FIWM has some long-term goals; they would like to merge the 2 facilities into one, and in order to do that they had a survey done which resulted in finding out the road they use to enter the Compost station isn’t even theirs. They have purchased machinery that has enabled them to make compost and mulch; FIWM has been selling the compost and mulch, the first 2 yards were free each additional yard of compost was $50.00 and $20.00 for mulch, since May they have taken in $2800.00 and they expect that to increase. Every dumpster that leaves the island costs the FIWM approx. $1000.00, that includes the cost of the ferry and disposal fees and the cost of the driver. FIWM is trying to reduce the amount of waste leaving the island. Some of the reasons FIWM bought the new big equipment are in the last 3 years FIWM spent $66,000 paying someone else to grind items they couldn’t, now with the new equipment they can grind it themselves and the equipment will pay for itself in about 6 years. Combining the facilities will bring a lot of questions. They will be able to have 2 employees on site at all times to make sure everything goes into the right place. The land where the transfer station is owned by the town and managed by the ferry, the equipment at the transfer station is 20 years old, they have had to replace compactors but replaced them with compactors that are built into the dumpsters.   They are also looking at grinding the glass to use in the future. Louisa asked about single stream recycling. Tim said they talked to the companies that take our waste; they are looking at single streaming.   Chris Finan asked if there was any threat of invasive plants in the mulch that is being made? Tim said nothing live goes into the mulch. The compost has the live items that would pose a problem; the heat gets so hot it destroys them. Harry Ferguson said that under Wayne’s supervision the place is looking great!

Mark Gaumond reported for Kandi Sanger on her project to construct affordable housing. Mark read a letter to Kandi from Bruce Kinlin, see attachment.

Mark Gaumond reported that Chris Finan is the GM and that FIDCO had a good and relatively quiet year. FIDCO is continuing to monitor the construction on the east end. They reconstructed the dock in silver eel cove.   Water and electricity will be added in the spring of 2015. Several people have asked about the operations of FIDCO and how it works. In response, FIDCO has developed a website which is available to all. Safety remains a major concern.  This past summer there were 2 accidents and luckily no one was seriously hurt. Mark encouraged everyone to adhere to the posted speed limits and drive carefully.

Louisa reported for the Town. The rec trail, they are still working with the Navy to get the easements necessary. The theater will be open next summer. It won’t be in wonderful condition but it will be safe. Land use committee meets every month and a half; they talked about affordable housing and re zoning. The next meeting will be about mixed-use zone, residential and commercial. It will be brought to Fishers before it goes anywhere. One thing that came up recently is the possibility of a rental law. Many houses are being listed as one-night rentals, many of the homeowners have been coming to meetings to complain about the noise, littering and congestion of the neighborhoods.

Walsh Park
There is a capital campaign going on and a few new members of the board.

Tom, ICB Members, the next meeting will be on Friday, November 28th at 4:30 pm.   Elections will be discussed.

Gordon Murphy reported this year’s passenger traffic is slightly down and commercial traffic is slightly down. The theater is moving in the right direction, the committee and the town are all working together. A lease renewal will be executed this year. The goal here is to put the money they collect in rent revenue back into the facilities. They are still digging out at the airport after storm Sandy. The lighting at the airport is going to cost $350, 000, 10% of which will have to be put in by the ferry. Both ferries are getting old; they are working hard on bringing them back up where they need to be. Race Point will be going into the yard this year. Next year they will be implementing a new ticketing system. They are trying to improve communications on this side.

Pierce asked if we thought about bringing back the annual reports even if it’s a 2-page summary and the membership fees. Tom is looking for input, please come to the board with suggestions.

Meeting Adjourned 5:35 pm

Respectfully Submitted by
Jamie Doucette

Featured Photo

USCG Eagle passing the Race early morning March 18, 2023 on her return from the Chesapeake Bay. Photo Credit Marlin Bloethe

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