Mar 2005


* * * DRAFT MINUTES * * * OF THE MEETING of March 16, 2005

Bruce Raymond called the meeting to order at 7:15 p.m.

Board Members present: Peter Bell, Anne Greer, Eric Rafuse, Bruce Raymond, Jim Sewell
Regrets: Doug Bell, Bob Fulleman, Jean McHarg, Burpee Meisner, Andra White
Board Members absent: Harold Adams, Neiff Joseph, John Nichols, Pete West

Minutes: Moved (Jim Sewell), seconded (Eric Rafuse) to adopt minutes of November 10 and notes as recorded at non-quorum meeting on January 19.

Business Arising:

1. Crib Repair: February and March storms have been severe, damaging the cribwork and washing through the road in a couple of places. Much sand has been displaced. Moved (Anne Greer), seconded (Peter Bell) that a committee consisting of Eric Rafuse, Bruce Raymond, Jim Sewell, and Peter Bell assess the damage, determine what materials are left for repair, determine what we can afford, and undertake to contract that repair work be done. Motion passed.

2. Storm Damage to Highway: Peter Bell reported on an informal meeting between several residents of Bush Island and government officials including Aubrey Martell from the Department of Transport and MLA Carolyn Bolivar-Getson in mid-January about road conditions along the marsh side of the Beach. Questions were raised including why the armour rock had not been completed. The response was that repair for Hurricane Juan damage could only complete repair to pre-storm conditions. Verbal agreement was reached that the road needs work, including correction of some kind to correct the problem of deep puddles of water on the highway. Although Bolivar-Getson said that she “would get back” to the residents, nothing has yet been heard. The meeting requested that Chairman Bruce Raymond write a letter to Martell and Bolivar-Getson from Friends outlining knowledge of the meeting and requesting some action.

3. Fundraising:

  • David and Alison Weagle of Crescent Beach have offered their property for a Friends Yard Sale. Jean McHarg (via e-mail) suggested that this be combined with the annual Beach Sweep and possibly a Membership Drive and suggested a date of June 4. Anne Greer will contact the Weagles about the proposed date. Details to be finalized at April meeting.
  • Jim Sewell reported that there seem to be enough orders for prints of Don Pentz’ art work, originally painted for interpretive signs, to meet the required numbers (now lowered to 6) for a first run by Atlantex. He proposed further advertisement through Lighthouse Publishing and our website before going ahead with the prints.
4. Signs: Jim Sewell distributed proposed Birds of Crescent Beach sign for comment. Feedback was positive. There were two suggestions for changes to the text. Jim will circulate the sign via e-mail for further feedback. All signs will be installed in early May with notice to the Bridgewater Bulletin for a possible press photo.

There was general agreement to post small vertical signs (8x10 approximately) on posts directing people to the walkways. These will read “To the Beach”. Anne Greer will order four signs from Pleasantville Signs.

5. Newsletter: The Board agreed that two newsletters each year, one in May and one in November, would serve our membership. It was further agreed that these should also be sent to the full local community. Jim Sewell is willing to continue to edit the Newsletter with input from Board members. The May newsletter should contain information about the new sign, the walkways, the Beach Sweep, possible Yard Sale, and AGM as well as a report on ongoing repairs and maintenance at the Beach.

Treasurer’s Report: Eric Rafuse will act as treasurer in Jean McHarg’s absence. The current bank account, with all invoices paid, stands at $12,966.30.

Committee reports:

1. Membership: Burpee Meisner sent a report through the Chairman that our membership stands at 560 individuals comprising 250 families.

2. Sperry’s Beach: Anne Greer and Peter Bell reported that a response to the August 3rd letters to Ministers Hurlburt had been received in early December signed by Brian Gilbert. A response with input from lawyer Jim Cowan was hand delivered to Richard Hurlburt, Minister NS DNR on Feb. 9. There has been no response to date. Text of all letters is available on the Sperry’s website, linked from Friends’ website.

3. Risser’s Boardwalk: Bruce Raymond reported his frustration as community representative working with DNR on the new boardwalk at Risser’s Provincial Park. The new boardwalk is being installed at a contract cost of $458,800: the original DNR budget was $354,000. The Committee has met with DNR staff and has written to both staff and to Richard Hurlburt, Minister of Natural Resources, calling for changes. Despite a promise of consultation with the community and of consensus among the Department, the Municipality and the community, construction has started essentially unchanged, over the objections of the Committee and the Municipality. As of this meeting, the Minister hasn't responded.

4. Beach Projects:

  • Armour Rock: The need for additional armour rock was briefly discussed, concluding that the Department of Transportation should be approached to consider shoring up the areas of recent breakthrough.
  • Roses: Lise Bell has made a very generous offer to co-ordinate the planting of roses in several places on the dunes. She hopes to enlist the help of the some of the senior classes at the Petite School and will provide her time as well as peat moss and bone meal. Moved (Jim Sewell), seconded (Eric Rafuse) that the Board spend $1000.00 on roses as an experimental measure to help the dunes. Jim Sewell will also inquire whether the LaHave Fire Department would consider aiding in watering the newly planted roses.

Peter Bell moved that the meeting be adjourned.

Next meeting: April 20 at 7:15 p.m. at the home of Anne Greer, 4675 Hwy. 331. 688-1857

Appended Report of Crib Repair Committee (see Business Arising #1 above)
Site Inspection March 21, 2005

The winds of early March followed by the major windstorm on the evening of March 8 did significant damage to the cribwork. The sea washed seaweed onto the road near the recycle bin which once again was tipped over backwards. Water flowing back to the ocean cut a gully into the edge of the parking area. The garbage drum disappeared entirely. At the west entry to the beach, the seaweed was piled against the crib to a height of over five feet and there was seaweed in the east end entry passage.

Part way along the beach, the sea broke through the dune (at a previously damaged location) and nearly a foot of sand was deposited on the roadway. Another one of the crib's posts was dislodged and a number of older planks were torn off at various places. At one of the new walkthroughs, the oceanside rocks were displaced, partially blocking the walkway and what was left attracted a considerable number of old logs and scrap wood. Some of the posts forming the crib have been tilted back somewhat: recognize that these are posts that survived the hurricane with minimum damage!

The toe of the dune has been eroded away, much more so where not protected by the crib. In some places, where marram grass has taken hold, a foot or more of sand has remained, while nearby, where there is no evidence of grass, sand levels are much lower. Overall it appears that about a foot of sand has "disappeared". This loss of sand has revealed where the bottom tier of planks are missing: they may have been missing for some time but not seen because that location area was buried.

In summary, the crib once again needs repair. In inspecting the crib on Monday March 21 (as agreed at the last board meeting), Eric and I counted a requirement for about 300 planks to be replaced, a repair in the same scale as the recent Branch Tree project which cost about $15,500. There appear to be sufficient planks remaining in our stockpile to permit the required repair: this would also set our collective conscience free because it would probably use up all of what Bowaters donated to the cause.

If the crib is to be repaired this season, it would be useful to do so before the summer. With this e-mail, I'm asking for comment on spending the significant funds. As I see it, the bank account stands in the neighbourhood of $12,000 with the only obligations outstanding being the interpretive sign, a commitment from the last Board meeting for $1,000 for the planting of roses, and the cost for a newsletter.

The earlier crib repair by Branch Tree included the installation of six pressure-treated posts and several hundred "planks". This repair would not have quite as large a "post installation " cost and. I believe somewhat fewer planks. If Branch Tree were to be used again, we could do as we did the last time putting a limit on their total cost. We should also arrange for Greg Corkum to rearrange the rocks at the walkthroughs at a cost of say $500 covering a few hours of machine time (no materials). We of course would recover part of all of the costs from our as yet unused ACOA allotment.