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SWATARA WATERSHED ASSOCIATION

Lebanon, PA USA

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

 

 

Swatara Watershed Association Meeting Minutes   

December 5, 2012

In attendance:  Megan Blackman, Dick and June Blouch, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz, Ben Miller, Jack Stauffer.

Business:

Bordner CabinRoad is Closed. No response on Labor and Industry permit approval. 

Ø       Ann will obtain a quote from LV Chimney sweep; Dombrosky in Mt. Gretna.

Bridges:    Mill Street Bridge behind Cleona opened recently.  Inwood Bridge rules changed at the federal level.  Cost to repair is approximately $2.6 million.  There will no longer be federally dedicated bridge funding.  Trying to find a community solution.

Conservancy Interim President Dick Blouch said an annual appeal is underway.  Recent success includes preservation of the Izaak Walton League’s 367 acres. 

Conservation DistrictsStephanie Harmon –

Donations and Bequests & Financial At a cost of $1650, on a motion by Embich/D Blouch, Garcia, Garman and Shea will perform the 2012 audit. 

Eagle Scouts

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Little SwataraFred Folmer reported that Berks Conservation District’s Kate O’Brian is working with farmers to create a conservation plan and install best management practices where cows are in the Crosskill Creek on the County Line.

Marcellus:  People are to report any legacy wells that are in operation. 

MS4  (storm water):  An ad purchased by municipalities ran in the Lebanon Daily News.

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com

Quittie Creek and Park ReportAnn Lasky Barry at Ladd Hanford will receive recognition for organizing a team to clean out the Quittie behind 2600 Cumberland St. after Hurricane Sandy. 

River of the Year OpportunityNotified by Josh Karnes (POWR) that the Swatara was selected to move to the next level, which is online voting that will start on December 13 and end January 18.  At this time, we are to prepare a news release and develop a calendar

1)  The Swatara Sojourn during the first weekend in May.

2)  June, Friends of the Union Canal with a booth, to promote canal boat rides, and use of boy scout canoes to paddle though the Union Canal Tunnel and see a canal lock.

3)  Car show at the Swatara Watershed Park, and offer primitive camping at this site.

4)  "You-Tow" trailers of canoes for groups to paddle and explore canoes at their leisure or in cooperation with a planned event.

5)  Art competition for people to draw or paint pictures of the Swatara and display their creation along the banks of the Swatara.  Online Photo competition.

6)  February 16 Lebanon County Historical Society & County of Lebanon 200th Anniversary.

7)  Quittie Park (Pumpkin Walk), Manada Conservancy, Dauphin County Parks, Sweet Arrow Lake group, Northern Swatara Watershed Association...to coordinate and promote their events in conjunction with River of the Year designation for the Swatara Creek.

8)  Promote our designation on our web page, Facebook Page, and by printing new Water Trail maps and stocking them in existing Water Trail sign boxes.

9)  Contact the Lebanon Valley Expo Corporation, our Tourist Promotion Agency, and ask them to help promote our River of the Year designation. 

10)  Educate citizens utilizing EELS--Envisioning an Environmental Legacy for the Swatara and Mills and Bank Barns as well as encouraging the use of Water Conservation Kits in older homes. 

Swatara Sojourn.  Planning to start in January.  However, spoke to Major League Printing to set up a web page to help us offer a variety of 25th anniversary items for sale--shirts, hats, bags.  We would not have to stock anything.    If anyone would like to help design an anniversary logo, please advise. 

Swatara State Park: Jo Ellen met with new Park Manager Corey Snyder who will be our January speaker. 

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $33,042.81.  Monthly payments are $430.69.  Tom Embich reported:

Ø       Everything is Winterized and the latreen removed.  The well is turned off, tables placed under the pavilion, and ropes retrieved. 

Ø       A special thanks to Dick and June for their generous contribution to repair and weld the grills by the pavilion.  We will host a Board picnic in the spring. 

Ø       Pavilion Roof - 609.03 sq’ of roof on each side.  Distance from gutter to ridge is 14.33 ft.  To cover half the roof we need 13 full length panels (26 to do the entire roof, plus a ridge vent.  Litz stock of sheet metal will cover about 2/3 of one side of the roof.  The current stringers are 2x4s set at 2 feet apart across the 4 ft on center trusses that act as the main roof supports. 

Ø       Haunted House and shed scraps may be used by Ono Fire Company for a practice burn. 

Ø       Tom will attend an afternoon at HACC seeking an Intern.

Ø       A select amount of MiciCraft Canoes are for Sale at a cost of $300 each.  They will be placed on Craig’s List, and advertised on our Facebook and web pages. 

Ø       Tom is storing the lawn mower at his home. 

Ø       LVC Professor Dan Grodzinski is interested in a campsite.

Ø       Tom received permission to have mail held at the Annville post office.  He will also retain the cash box with $100 until next season.

Water Works:  A tree is down upstream of the launch, and may be able to be trimmed over the winter months. 

Swatara Water Trail:  Printing of new maps possible if we receive River of the Year designation.

Technical:  Chuck Cravota provided USGS Technical Reports.    http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10230-010-0113-5 and http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10230-010-0112-6 .

West Lebanon Township: Water test results.

Other

On a motion by Embich/Stauffer, a Letter of support will be provided for Dauphin County Conservation District to apply for a Coldwater heritage grant for a Manada Creek assessment, summit, and fish shocking that may document the presence of native trout.   

Miller asked if corporate sponsors may use the Swatara Logo on their web pages.  We discussed registering our logo.  A policy/procedure will be researched. 

Next Meeting:  January 2, 9:30AM Speaker:  Swatara State Park Manager Corey Snyder.

OCTOBER  3, 2012

The  meeting was held at 09:30 at Swatara Watershed Park, 1929 Blacks Bridge Road, Annville, (Route 934N to Bellegrove, left onto Blacks Bridge Road, Annville.

Attendees:  R. Arnold, B. & G. Connor, T. Embich, F. Folmer, A. Lasky, B. Miller

1. For the most part the sites are in fair shape.  Posting of the property with "archery hunting open Nov. 1” has been done at 8 locations on the property.  V.P. Embich showed a virtual tour of the campsites as of Oct. 1.  Several have litter, including beer bottles/cans, one had bagged, but rotted hamburger on the side-board of their grill, at least five have hammocks, chairs, or “flag stone” blocking the 15 foot walk right-of-way along the creek bank.  Campers will be notified.

2. We decided at the last meeting that we could recover some cost and get rid of about 6 canoes (some of those not registered with PA F&B).  Tom Embich checked on current prices for the Michigan type 17-foot canoes and found some for new at $945 each; for used the prices ranged from $250 each to $600 each depending upon condition.  Ours would probably bring about $300 each.  Several Board members will check around to see what interest there might be in the canoes.

3. The pavilion roof is still a priority, but we need feed back on potential cost and design to proceed.  Bob Arnold took measurements to check with a roofer friend to get a replacement cost for a more conventional roof.  (Note: After the meeting, Pres. Litz re-alerted Tom that she has some sheet metal roofing that could work on part of the roof. In addition, Fred & Ben worked on the “haunted house”, the house is totally down, and  the rubber membrane roof is close to being removed.)

4. We reviewed the future use of the various sites and how we manage some of the "individualization" that has taken place at a couple of camp sites.  Embich’s “virtual tour slide show” helped all present to see what has been done. The Board discussed how to proceed without sacrificing our loan retirement income.  Current loan balance is $33,606.73.  On a related item, Pres. Litz has sent notifications to all the current campers that their sites must be totally vacated by Oct. 31.  The relative low use of some of the motor homes at the sites leads one to think that we may be a relatively low cost “storage” site with benefits of being able to periodically use the campsite when wanted.  Current storage costs for a motor home in our area, however, was quoted at $50 per month, which would be less than our seasonal “rental” by about $125 ($300 from May –Oct) versus $425 for SWP donation.  One issue regarding the potential cleanup to be required at sites that are left with debris, lead one member to suggest a sort of “security deposit” to cover dumpster or hauling costs incurred at the end of the season. 

5. The winter storage of the lawn mower has a temporary fix, with the Blouch's volunteering part of their barn; but a more long term solution needs to be developed. Also, if we get a replacement-towing vehicle, we should look into off-site over-winter storage for it and the mower, and possibly the canoe trailers; as a comparison to the on-site storage in the past, with potential vandalism during the off-season. Discussion on this issue prompted Fred Folmer to reiterate that for this winter, he could store some canoes without trailers at the Guilford Street warehouse; but he would need to have them out by early Spring, 2013, because of pending sale plans.  No further action was taken pending examining some other options.

6. The large shed still needs to be moved to the "haunted house" site, but the "haunted house" needs a little bit more dismantling first. (As noted this was almost completed after the meeting – Oct.3)  Mr. Sweigart contacted me and he wants his 4x4 beams returned. We used the beams to move the shed to where it is, but had to leave two beams under it temporarily.  If we can jack up the shed, and put temporary wheels on the front to match the ones on the back, we may be able to more easily move the shed into place when the membrane roof is salvaged from the “haunted house”.

7. The Launch Guide water level nomogram is now available as a .pdf file that can be sent via e-mail (providing you have Acrobat reader or equivalent, to open it).  Send Tom an e-mail with the request for the "Launch water level guide". 

 8. A new DCNR Park Manager for Swatara State Park (likely, Memorial Lake, also) is starting soon.  Pres. Litz has plans to meet him; Corey Snyder, native of Grantville; we should invite him to a meeting, soon.

ADDITIONAL BUSINESS:

Ben Miller commented on the progress of “Cocoa Kayaks” and mentioned that he thought he heard of another Eagle Scout project to make picnic tables for Swatara Watershed Park; he will get information to confirm or correct his comment.

Ann Lasky – Quittie Park – Announced “Pumpkin Walk” for Oct. 26, 7 – 9 PM; and downed tree cleanup soon.

Betty Connor – Handed a handbook to Fred Folmer for the watershed development of Little Swatara Creek that was started during the previous attempt to get a watershed group going in the Bethel area. Commented that it might be good to see if Stephanie Harmon needs it for archives.

Fred Folmer – Informed us that possible pollution action may be forth coming for a couple of farmers on the Little Swatara Creek due to herd pollution of the creek. The local Environmental Assessment Committee contacted the Chesapeake group, via S. Eisenbise, but had no enforcement aid, contact with Berks Co. Cons. Dist. for enforcement was made, and follow-up with LCCD will also be made.

Bob Arnold reported on his experience with camping at site 34; good weekend; checked to camp there again over a weekend and discovered it was taken for the month (Oct. 11, unless renewed to the end of the month).  Bob also asked if we would be willing to replace a sapling Tulip Poplar lost on his property, since we planned for the future to do the tree nursery.  The Board acted to accept a $10.00 donation. Supplemental discussion regarding suspected timber removal on our property was also entertained.  The large oak that went down in the T.S. Lee event of 2010, along the road beyond site #1 has been cut and is essentially gone; yet the use of that much wood on site or by all the campers this season is not possible.  Therefore, someone is hauling it away. V.P.  Embich will check with Pres. Litz regarding any agreements that might pre-exist for timber harvesting via the Wise’s or local farmers.  (NOTE: Post meeting information from Pres. Litz indicates that permission was given to cut the fallen oak tree to open the road, but no removal from the site was given or implied; No pre-existing agreements exist either, except for the power line right-of-way clearing and maintenance.)

Meeting adjourned 11:15 AM

VP/Acting Secretary T. Embich

SEPTEMBER 5, 2012

1. We posted the property with "archery hunting after Oct. 31 to allow limited deer hunting in the Park; but to protect our campers through the season.  We still need a source for the posting signs; and any help is welcome.  Lowes was suggested. A post meeting search at Lowe’s found only “No Hunting” signs or “POSTED” signs.

2. We decided at the last meeting that we could recover some cost and get rid of about 6 canoes (some of those still not registered with PA F&B).  What is a good price to ask?  I am checking on the value as aluminum scrap, but used canoes of the size and type we have need more work for a depreciated price.  Ann Lasky volunteered to check the current scrap price for aluminum; Tom will check on the depreciated value of the Michigan canoes.

3. The pavilion roof is becoming a priority, but we need feed back from Bob Arnold on potential cost of potential design and materials for the next meeting. Those in attendance and who know the membrane roof we are trying to salvage from the old Haunted House think that only a part of the pavilion roof will be covered by the membrane roof, but as a temporary solution it will improve the protection of the new tables in the pavilion for winter.

4. We addressed the request for electricity to be run to the campsites, but we need to review the future use of the various sites and how we manage some of the "individualization" that has taken place at a couple of sites.  This issue is hopefully resolved for now. The requester has been verbally notified, and he has resorted to intermittent use of a gas generator to do some work at site 9 and 10.

5. The winter storage of the lawn mower has a temporary fix, with the Blouch's volunteering part of their barn; but a more long term solution needs to be developed. Also, if we get a replacement towing vehicle, we should look into off-site over-winter storage for it and the mower, and possibly the canoe trailers.  Fred Folmer volunteered part of his warehouse in Lebanon for the canoes, but the trailers won’t fit. This would only be for over winter, and next Spring he will need to space.

6. The large shed still needs to be moved to the "haunted house" site, but the "haunted house" needs a little bit more dismantling first. Cooler weather work is a likely option, but Fred, Ben Miller and Ann Lasky worked after the meeting to clear some of the unusable wood debris to a pile for eventual discard or burning.

7. The Launch Guide water level nomogram that Tom developed seems to work okay, so if anyone wants a copy, let him  know so that he can run enough copies.  It tracks the USGS Harper Tavern (01573000) water level gage height versus the water level below our launch dock at the Park.  By looking up the internet USGS accessible site at Harper's Tavern gage you can easily see what the water level is at the Park launch dock.

SUPPLEMENTAL ITEMS:

R. Blouch:  Conservancy fundraiser is underway.  The next meeting is “tonight” (Sept. 5).

Lasky: Clean-up on Quittie at the end of King Street for this Saturday, Sept. 8, 10AM to 2 PM; The Board approved the advertised water donation by SWA by a concensus at this meeting.

Fred Folmer: Commented on anissue with a larger herd in the tributary stream to the Little Swatara in Berks County.  He plans to have Stephanie Eisenbise and the Berks Co. Conservation District check into a Conservation Plan for the farm. 

Ben Miller:  Ben reported that “Cocoa Kayaks” is still forming with attorney help.

So that I can prepare for the meeting, next please submit additional items for the Oct. 3 meeting to me at tembich@verizon.net by Monday, Oct. 1.   Thanks much, and see you at the Park.   Tom

AUGUST 1, 2012

Meeting called to order at 9:35 AM by V.P. Embich:

In attendance: Bob Arnold, Richard Blouch, T. Embich, Fred Folmer, Bill Potters.

1. The issue of hunting at the Swatty Park was discussed and by consensus we will post the area as "Archery Hunting Only; Hunting After October 31 Only". - Discussion centered on the range and deadliness of compound bow versus cross-bow hunting, which is now allowed during archery season. Cross-bow has a much shorter range than the compound bows, therefore cross-bow hunters have shorter distances to target, and less likely to mistake a target, but the archers also must be positive of their targets with the brush and trees now on the property.

2. How many canoes do we maintain? Because of the much lower rates and numbers of groups needing more than a couple of canoes, we discussed the possibility of selling some of the "unregistered canoes". After discussion, a motion was made by R. Blouch, and seconded to advertise the sale of 6 of the canoes (after sorting through them for those in best condition for retention), motion passed. Suggestions for ads included the LV Merchandiser and Paxton Herald, Craig's List, an email blast, our web and Facebook pages as well as local free spots on radio are a possibility. At least one Board member expressed an interest in purchasing a canoe, also.

3. The roof on the pavilion is gradually blowing off and deteriorating to sieve status! The "haunted house membrane roof" may be a temporary fix, but will require lots of help and some roofing experience to move it and reaffix it to the pavilion. B. Arnold volunteered to investigate cost, etc. of end lots of shingles and roll of tarpaper for the job if full replacement is selected. Those with roofing experience suggested that a minimum of 3/8", preferably, 1/2 " sheathing plywood is needed to re-roof with shingles. This item deferred until we get more information and find out how worthy the membrane roof is. This work item is a priority, but takes a good deal of work.

4. One long-term camper has requested an extension of the electricity installation to the campsites. Tent site #13 already has a power feed to it and water outlet. Previously used, I am told by Wise's or family that because of the expansion of development running electric to even one site may be restricted by local ordinance because of the flood plain restrictions. Also, since either under ground cable or poles would be required, the cost is prohibitive. The one camper volunteered to pay for the installation to "his" site, but what about others, who will likely want the same enhancement? Pres. Litz already told this camper "NO" to use of an extension cord/cable from the pavilion to charge his camper batteries, but several are already using the pavilion power to do battery recharging, but not on a frequent basis. After review of the current status and the legal restrictions; but mostly because of retaining the "primitive camping" status, the Board consensus was to not develop electrical service beyond the current status. A motion by F. Folmer, second by B. Arnold to maintain the status as "primitive camping" with no additional electric service passed unanimously.

5. Winter storage of the mower is still a couple of months away, but currently there is only under the Office storage for it. R. Blouch volunteered that if we are not able to acquire a "used" or inexpensive shed capable of storing the mower and a few implements, that SWA could store the mower in the Blouch barn over-winter.

6. The large shed is still in the woods; dismantling of the haunted house, which must be done before the shed can be moved, and to recover the membrane roof for possible use on the pavilion, was decided as a priority for the work team, today.

7. T. Embich introduced a nomogram to correlate the level of the creek below our dock to the Harper Tavern USGS gage readings available via internet. Tom handed out copies of the nomogram to those present. Since it is still in rough plot form, and not currently scanned; contact Tom if you want a copy.

Meeting adjourned @ 10:15 AM

Following the meeting, Bob Arnold trimmed branches and multiflora rose along roadways and also "sucker growth" from some of the mature trees in the area of the office/pavilion; Fred Folmer cleaned out the spouting of leaf and tree debris and a tennis ball and nut husks that were blocking the flow, then worked with Tom to dismantle more than half of the "haunted house" and secure salvaged lumber and the membrane roof.  Bill Potters reinforced the dock and stabilized the soil bank. Dick began to check the current outlets at the campsite and behind the office for integrity. Our speedy recovery wishes to Dick after his heart cath episode; he is chaffing to drive next week, and June is too!

A huge THANK YOU to all the faithful workers in the heat and humidity, a great deal of work was done that would take the Old Park Ranger all summer to do alone.

Respectfully submitted by Acting Secr./V.P. Embich.

July 11, 2012

Watermelon at the Waterworks:  Attendees picked up litter, then enjoyed watermelon.

In attendance:  June & Dick Blouch, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz, Ben Miller, Jack Stouffer

Business:

American Water:  Jo Ellen attended the dedication of an expansion project allowing AWC to pump 11 million gallons of water from the Swatara Creek.  Their former capacity was 9 million gallons per day.

Bordner CabinRoad is Closed. No response on Labor and Industry permit approval. Ann will provide information on a chimney sweep who can evaluate and provide an estimate of repair for the chimney.  Several brick fell from the liner.

Conservancy Dick Blouch

Donations and Bequests & Financial

Ø      Friendy’s fundraisers: Lebanon 6.18 $54.08; and 6.26 Hershey $58.79.   Thank you June and Ann!

Ø      Attorney Robert Conrad requested our tax ID for a bequest.

Ø      Participate in Boscov’s Friends Helping Friends benefits nonprofits in October.

Ø      On a Folmer/Lasky motion, $560.69 in reimbursement for expenses to Tom Embich for Swatara Watershed Park were approved.

Eagle Scouts:  Jethro Holzman’s picnic tables were delivered, and are under the pavilion.  Great job, Jethro!  On a related note, Treasurer Walt Haber would like to donate a picnic table.  Blouch’s volunteered their truck.  Stouffer, Miller, and Embich volunteered to assist with picking up the table.  Embich stated the donations are most welcome.  Also, Lowes has complete kits for $88.  If anyone else would like to sponsor a table, Embich can coordinate volunteers to assemble them. 

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Little SwataraFred Folmer

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events posted at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com

Quittie Creek and Park ReportAnn Lasky--Camp Strand students helped with wild flowers.  Two grants are stuck, the wetland bank near Dairy Queen, just east of Cleona; and a streambank restoration project that would require an archaeological dig near 934.

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $34,440.2116 Seasonal Campers

Ø      Waiting on a call from FEMA concerning TSLee repairs.

Ø      Park Ranger Tom’s report:  Completed a Livery Registration with Fish and Boat Commission.  A tree fell near the launch area.  Also, the phone keeps cutting out, and Tom has the phone company coming out to determine the source of the intermittent problem. 

Ø      So that it can be removed immediately, please advise of any invasive plants like purple loosestrife or bamboo.  Discard or planting of non-native species is not allowed in the Park.

Ø      Phil Hall, West Nile Virus coordinator, tested the Park. 

Swatara Water Trail:  Ben Miller is starting a kayak livery in the Hershey area.  There is no physical location for his business.  Around 2000, SWA laid out the Water Trail.  In cooperation with DCNR and PA Fish and Boat Commission, two printings of maps occurred to date.  SWA is now in need of more local Trail maps.  A regional version does not provide needed detail for local paddlers.  If you are aware of a grant program for this purpose, please advise. 

Other:  Penn DOT cleared the title from the van flooded in TS Lee.  Labor and Industry closed a former employee account.

Next Meeting:  August 1, 9:30AM work session at Swatara Watershed Park, 1929 Blacks Bridge Road, Annville.  Tom Embich will coordinate projects.

June 6, 2012

In attendance:  Bob Arnold, Megan Blackman, Park Ranger Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Steph Harmon, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz, Ben Miller, Jack “Mike Row-Dirty Jobs” Stouffer.

Business:

American Water

Bordner CabinRoad is Closed. No response on Labor and Industry permit approval.

Bridges:   

Chesapeake Bay: 

Conservancy Dick Blouch

Conservation DistrictsStephanie Harmon –

Donations and Bequests & Financial

Ø      Friendy’s fundraisers: Lebanon 6.18; and 6.26 Hershey. Coupons on Facebook

Ø      State Audit completed. 

Ø      Newsletter highlighting the Swatara Sojourn is ready to mail. 

Eagle Scouts:  Jethro Holzman is setting up a work day to make more picnic tables. 

FIG:  Munitions meeting E Hanover Township building, Dauphin County, 6.21 @6PM

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Little SwataraFred Folmer

Marcellus

MS4  (storm water):  Political Science teacher Mike Schroeder wrote an article, and mentioned the Red Devil Ducks.  Thanks to Lebanon County Planning, the Recorder of Deeds, and Penn DOT, copies of original blue prints for storm water drains were obtained for a short stretch on Cumberland Street.  Prints were turned over to West Lebanon, North Lebanon, and North Cornwall Townships.  The original storm drains were installed by Bethlehem Steel.  

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events posted at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com

Quittie Creek and Park ReportAnn Lasky

Swatara Sojourn.  Excellent team work!  Thank you everyone!  Also, participated in a PA Fish and Boat event in Harrisburg to encourage people to wear life vests.  Josh Karns, POWR, was also in attendance.  The final paperwork will be submitted this week for the POWR grant. 

Swatara State ParkIt’s Angel Croll’s last week.  She’s moving to Texas.  We wish her well.  Angel reports that there is a delay in completion of the Phase 1 projects going on in the Park.

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $34,713.9614 Seasonal Campers

Ø      Waiting on a call from FEMA.

Ø      Park Ranger Tom’s report:  Bill Potters and Bill Agurchek are tearing down the haunted house, and we will reuse the rubber roof on the pavilion; Reuse lumber; Check lights on trailer; shed must be rotated; buoy return or reuse; remove PennDOT sign from dam work; bridge to back needs rebuilt; phone not working; could use a vehicle to tow trailers on site. 

Ø      If the Swatara on the Harper’s USGS gauge is above 2.2’, it is too high to launch; if below .4’, it is too low to launch.  It is believe that Pine Grove and Inwood gauges were wiped out in TS Lee.  Confirm with Chuck Cravotta. 

Union Township Farm:  

Water Works:  Due to holiday, revise date for Watermelon at the Waterworks.

Swatara Water Trail:  New maps are here.  Local identity merged into a regional map.

SRBC.

West Lebanon Township: Still cooperating with DEP to research the source of pollution.  A public hearing was held and testimony was solicited.  Jo Ellen submitted comments. 

Other:  Bob Arnold donated a book, The Big Thirst, by Charles Fishman, for the “Swatara Book Club.” 

Ø      Penn State Extension & Conewago Creek  free PA OneStop Farm Mapping Workshop Thursday, 6.21.12, 5:30PM–8:30PM, 15C Olmstead Building, Penn State Hbg.  Create a detailed, accurate and professional map of any farm, including field boundaries, acreages, stream and water features, wells, sinkholes, application setbacks and buffers, soils and aerial images.  Landowners leave with a hardcopy map and account online to update the farm map.   Contact the Dauphin County Conservation District by June 15 at (717) 921-8100.   Pre-registration required, space limited. http://www.paonestop.org/--Conewago Creek Initiative, visit http://www.conewagoinitiative.net/

Ø       DEP and Fresco Green Building Supplies- free Introductory Alternative Energy Educator’s Workshop July 18 , 2012, Harrisburg Area Community College, Room 302,  8:30 – 4:00 p.m.  Teachers eligible for 6.5 Act 48 credit hours

Next Meeting:  July 11, 9:30AM Field Day – Watermelon at the Waterworks.  Join us.

May 2, 2012

In attendance:  Dick and June Blouch, Betty and George Conner, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Jo Ellen Litz, Ben Miller, Jack Stouffer.

Business:

Karen Light, a long term member of the Board, tendered her resignation.  We want to thank Karen for her many years of dedicated service, and wish her all of life’s best moments in the years to come. 

American Water:  A donation was received to sponsor the Sojourn. 

Award NominationOn a Stouffer/Folmer motion, a Conservation District award nomination for Dan Landis of Landisdale Farm for his stewardship as an organic farmer whose main crop is hay in East Hanover Township was approved.  He rents the Blouch farm. 

Bordner Cabin:  Road is Closed. No response on Labor and Industry permit approval. The cabin continues to remain the same.  The final submission to L&I for improvements to Bordner Cabin has not been shared with DCNR as required.  Mike Willeham will send a copy as soon as possible.  When the time comes, DEP permits must be reviewed by DCNR for approval before submitting to DEP.

Bridges:    Black’s Bridge Road and Lidley Murray Road Bridges are open.

Chesapeake Bay: 

Conservancy Dick Blouch

Conservation DistrictsStephanie Harmon –

Donations and Bequests & Financial

Ø      Friendy’s fundraisers: Lebanon 6.18, Ann; and 6.26 Hershey Dick. 

Ø      Audit notice received.  Coupons will be distributed at the Sojourn. 

Ø      Financial statements received.  On a Folmer/Blouch motion, the $1600 bill will be paid. 

Eagle Scouts:  Will be working on more picnic tables. 

FIG: 

FIRE BAN:  In effect until May 14, 2012 in Lebanon County.

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Intern:  Nick Zimmerman

Little Swatara

Marcellus:  Lebanon County passed a fee ordinance within the required time frame should any wells be tapped. 

MS4  (storm water):  A chart of costs to municipalities has been developed.

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events posted at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com

Quittie Creek and Park ReportAnn Lasky

Swatara Sojourn.  Title “The Ultimate Water Park”, Sojourn.                                                

Lebanon County and 3 municipal resolutions received to date:  North Lebanon, North Londonderry, & South Lebanon                                                                                  

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Shore support:  Laurie Andrews, Jack Stauffer, Nick Zimmerman.                          

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Hitches and moving the canoes:  Dick Blouch, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Dave Wentling.  

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Food: Dick and June Blouch breakfast, Ann and David Lasky pizza, Pot Pie from Ono Fire Company delivered by Gail Smith. Betty and George Seaman’s Subs for lunch Saturday, George photographer.  Nick also volunteered to take some footage.                                                     

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Weidle providing a dumpster at 1929 BBR, and Penn Waste at Middletown Boat Launch.  Middletown Boro and Manada Conservancy coordinating land crews for the Great PA Clean-up.                                                                       

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Arnold will give a talk on portage safety.  Matthew Dodd will perform River songs.           

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Ketterings will get a reprieve this year.  GLRA will also help to haul trash and provide a tire trailer.               

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Signed up for Great PA Cleanup.  POWR grant approved.                                        

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Hershey Highmeadow Campground Saturday night.                                                           

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Indian Echo Caverns will partner with a pavilion for lunch.                                                                                          

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Friday Jo Ellen pick up Van, Trailer, Penn DOT Great Cleanup supplies, and Swiss drinks.  PA American Water donated 10 cases of water, which were delivered to 1929 BBR.

Swatara State ParkPer Angel, the Swatara State Park project is moving along very nicely.  All three trailheads are taking form including paving.  The Sand Siding pedestrian bridge has all piers and abutments poured.  Along the trails culverts are being replaced and the stone tread is being laid.  One delay has been encountered and the projected completion date is 7/31/12.  Please remind folks that sections of the park are closed to all recreational users and be respectful of the signs and/or barricades.  These areas are: Old State Road from Waterville/AT Bridge to Swopes Valley Road; Lickdale area; Rail Trail between abandoned Gold Mine Road through Sand Siding to Swopes Valley Road. 

There were questions concerning the new boat launch just north of the Lickdale Campground.  Will the drive be paved?  Will the launch be improved?  Will there be parking?

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $_34,991.57__

FEMA/PEMA asked for one more form, and Carolyn Lutz said our paper work is being forwarded for processing.  A call for a site inspection is expected.

Ø      Tom applied canoe renewal stickers.

Ø      Dick got trailers rewired and bearings packed at Boyer’s in Cleona.

Ø      10 Seasonal Campers

Ø      Rebuild-It donated a used 17.5 hp Craftsmen tractor/mower with a 42” deck.  Signed thank you card. 

Ø      Tot Lot equipment.  Questions were asked about liability. 

Ø      United Way Day of Caring:  Special thanks to the 20 people from NL Rotary, Hershey Chocolate Workers, Boy Scouts, and SWA members for policing the grounds, retrieving the tractor and mowing, assembling the picnic table, and cleaning the office.  The large shed is too wide to get across the small creek, so donation of a smaller shed will be sought for equipment storage. 

Union Township Farm:  Jo Ellen met with Mr. Camp.  He said it is not necessary for SWA to sign a Conservation easement for the 300’ buffer around wetland 1.  He also said his offer still stands to donate the land.   A request was made to be written into the industrial park’s maintenance contract and/or an endowment fund for maintenance. 

There were questions concerning all of the earth being moved. 

Water Works:  The canal lock will be purchased along with the home per FEMA. 

Swatara Water Trail: 

SRBC.

West Lebanon Township: Still cooperating with DEP to research the source of pollution. 

Other

Next Meeting:  June 6, 9:30AM

April 4, 2012

The April meeting of the Swatara Watershed Association was a work session held at Swatara Watershed Park, 1929 Black’s Bridge Road, Annville PA. 

Prior to the cleanup, members discussed an upcoming MS4 storm water educational ‘Drains to Streams’ exercise to release Red Devil Ducks; sharing our vision for the Park with neighbors; and the upcoming Swatara Sojourn.

A sympathy card was signed for member Denise Donmoyer.

During the Spring Cleanup of the Park, June, Dick, Stephanie and Ann got the well primed; Don and Casey Mock took turns with their mower and brush trimmer to help clear debris in order to retrieve our shed.  Tom, Fred, Bob,  and Jack were able to ‘walk’ the shed out of the swamp.  After the riding mower was rolled from the shed, it was pulled to the parking lot to take for evaluation and hopefully repair. Jo Ellen and two other men cleared a second path of debris.  Three picnic tables were retrieved, and Fred was able to screw the one table back together.  It was a good day’s work.

Near the western border, there is significant debris that remains to be retrieved, another picnic table that needs to be reassembled, loose brush to be piled for kindling, and of course the shed still needs to get back to the parking lot.  Scouts and students have volunteered hours to help at the Park, and could assist.  Likewise, volunteers from the Northern Lebanon Rotary and Chocolate Workers have signed up to help on United Way Day of Caring.  Ed Anspach will be contacted for possible assistance to retrieve the shed.

March 8, 2012

Kim McKee spoke about the Appalachian Trail, highlighting the trail through Lebanon County.

In attendance:  Bob Arnold, Dick Blouch, Betty and George Conner, Denise Donmoyer, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Walt Haber, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz, Pam Tricamo, Nick Zimmerman

Business:

American Water:  George Cradic A grant application was submitted. 

Award Nominations:  of members 55+ for Lifeways SAGE Awards

Bordner Cabin:  Road is Closed. No response on Labor and Industry permit approval.

Bridges:    Wilson Consulting has proposed a new design for the Inwood Bridge.  The design would preserve features of the existing iron truss bridge placed on top of a new bridge.

Chesapeake Bay: 

Conservancy Dick Blouch

Conservation DistrictsStephanie Harmon –

Donations and Bequests & Financial Friendy’s fundraisers will be set up at Lebanon by Ann, and at Hershey by Dick. 

Eagle Scouts: 

FIG:  For Munitions Plan information, contact Jo Anderson 717.861.8181

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Grant Writer:  Introduction of Pam Tricamo

Intern:  Nick Zimmerman is going to be a senior at Kutztown University, and must volunteer 400 hours in his major, public policy.  He also has an environmental interest.

Little SwataraFred Folmer – three 911 towers are proposed along the Appalachian Trail. 

Marcellus:  Lebanon County is considering whether or not to pass an ordinance. 

MS4  (storm water):  Joanne Throwe’s presentation on Tuesday, March 13th at 1:30 pm in the auditorium at the Lebanon City/County Municipal Building. 

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events posted at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com .  Stocking for the first day of trout on March 31.    Stop by the Lake for breakfast between 6AM and 10PM.  SAL received a grant to run a Nature Day Camp for fourth graders. 

Quittie Creek and Park ReportAnn Lasky reports that trout will also be stocked in the Quittie in Cleona.  Gingrich is considering a trail easement, and Todd will be approached for an easement too.  Cleanups will take place March 24 and 31.

Swatara Sojourn.  Title “The Ultimate Water Park”, Sojourn.  Shore support:  Laurie Andrews, Jack Stauffer, Nick Zimmerman. Hitches and moving the canoes:  Dick Blouch, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Dave Wentling.  On a motion by Bob and Fred, SWA will purchase van insurance at a cost of $29/day ($120/van total with a $250 deductible or $370 if there’s a mishap).  Food: Dick and June Blouch breakfast, Ann and David Lasky pizza, The Pot Pie from Ono Fire Company. Betty and George Seaman’s Subs for lunch Saturday, George photographer.  Nick also volunteered to take some footage.  Jo Ellen contacted Weidle’s for a dumpster.  Arnold will give a talk on portage safety.  Ketterings will get a reprieve this year.  GLRA will also help to haul trash.  Signed up for Great PA Cleanup.  POWR grant submitted.  Hershey Highmeadow Campground on board.  Check if there’s electricity at the new pavilion.  Middletown contacted.  Indian Echo Caverns will partner with the pavilion

A Dick/Walt motion passed to reimburse Jo Ellen for last year’s mishap.

Swatara State Park Kinsley Construction is doing a fine job.  The Sand Siding Trail and bridge area are cleared of trees; excavation and pouring of concrete for the piers are underway.  Culverts along the Rail Trail and Old State Road are being replaced and/or cleaned out.  Grading at the Lickdale Trailhead will begin soon.

Items which impact the operations of the park are:

Areas under construction and therefore closed to all users: Rail Trail between Gold Mine Road and Swopes Valley; Old State Road; and Lickdale Trailhead.

Water Trail Users: A causeway has been placed across Swatara Creek downstream from “the Steps”/Sand Siding.  Signs designating a portage route are in place.  Boat access on Old State Road near Swopes Valley Road may not be open based on construction.  Please pay attention to barricades and “Road Closed” signs.  If they are up, even moved to the side, the road is closed to general public.

Friends of Swatara State Park will hold a general membership meeting at 7pm on Monday April 2 at Twin Grove Campground Lodge.  It is an opportunity for individuals to learn about projects currently underway to improve the park and educational/recreational opportunities.  A Vernal Pool Walk, lead by Richard Light, is scheduled for Saturday March 10, 3pm.  Meet at the State Park Lane Trailhead.  All welcome at either event.

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $_35,543.13__.  Still waiting to hear from FEMA/PEMA.

Ø      Canoe registrations – Tom reviewing

Ø      Trailer wiring and packing of bearings – Jo Ellen will call Cal Boyer to see if he can work on the trailers.  Dick is willing to tow the trailers to Cleona.

Ø      Camper renewals – Jo Ellen will prepare for mailing.

Ø      Gate –  Tom will look at Tractor Supply.

Denise Donmoyer donated 42.5 hours.

Union Township Farm:  SWA is requested to sign a Conservation easement for a 300 foot buffer around wetland 1 as well as the Conservation Easement Document that names the Association as the Holder of the Conservation Easement.  This document is the last piece before Camp can start construction of the project.  The Army Corp requires the Easement be recorded prior to the start of construction and construction should start the beginning of May.  I apologize for the short notice and the fire drill but I am coming into this a little late and was not aware that everything had not been worked out.   Per Brian W. Reisinger, P.E., the log cabin and barn would be donated after the development takes place.  After a lengthy discussion, it was moved by Fred and Tom to ask George Gress if he had or would complete an assessment of the current condition of the wetland, including the state of any invasive species; ask Attorney Henry’s office to review the easement agreement to determine if SWA would be a watchdog to annually report problems to the owner, DEP and the Army Corps of Engineers; ask the Conservancy if they’d like to partner on this project. 
Water Works:  Clarification

1.    Emily L. Tilley owns the property and any decision about it is up to her.  The $16,000 appraisal of the land with the lock on it is an independent appraisal done by Frank Tomecek Real Estate Services August 2010 and is not an asking price. 

2.    It is understood that a survey of the land and appraisals of the property must be done eventually but the facts are clear enough without these formalities to use for preliminary planning. Please note the following:

  a.  Tracts 1 through 5 from Emily’s deed are marked with numbers. 

    i.      Tract 4 is where the house (H) is located and does not contain any part of the lock.

    ii.     Tracts 3 and 5 are the two on which the lock is located.

    iii.    Tracts 1 and 2 are located along the Swatara north of the lock and its towpath.

  b.  The Garage (G) burned about two years ago and is no longer present on Tract 5 (It burned before Mr. Tomecek’s assessment).

  c.  Any sale of land would involve all parts of the lock (tracts 3 & 5).

Steve

Swatara Water Trail: 

SRBC.

West Lebanon Township: Still cooperating with DEP to research the source of pollution. 

Other

Next Meeting:  April 4, 9:30AM work day at Swatara Watershed Park

March 9, 10AM, Congressman Gerlach will be at the Ag Center, 2120 Cornwall Rd., Lebanon

A special meeting may also be called to discuss and vote upon the wetlands at Logistics Park. 

February 1, 2012

Attendance:  Bob Arnold, Richard Blouch, June Blouch, Fred Folmer, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz and Jack Stauffer.

Business :

American Water-George Cradic:  SWA received a grant application.

Border Cabin-You cannot drive into the cabin from the north, but can walk or ride a bicycle.  Park your car at the Appalachian Trail Bridge.   Marking on Interstate 81 is 95.1 going South.  Can park your car, and walk down the hill.  

Conservancy- Dick Blouch reported that they had a stand at the Balogna Fest where they sold coffee.  Blouch’s thought it might be good publicity  for SWA to  get a stand next year.  Jo Ellen met with Stephanie DiVitorre on purchase of a Union Canal lock. 

Conservation District-Stephanie Harmon- Hopes to present at a future meeting.  Her child was ill. 

Donations /Bequests/Financial

Floods/Droughts:   EMA conducted a TSLee debriefing.  Made application for disaster assistance to Fema and Pema for the Swatara Watershed Park.  We received an estimate from Woodland Contractors for $14,800 to repair the Boat ramp.

Little Swatara-Fred Folmer-Collecting addresses of people who live along the Little Swatara, and getting ready to form the Little Swatara Watershed Association.  They can use the Bethel twp. Building for meetings; might need and issue to grab the interest of the people along the Creek.  

MS4-Matt Royer is re-starting the “Land and Water resources “ group.  Through Penn State, interns are being offered, and an application was submitted for the Swatara Watershed Association. 

Northern Swatara/Denise Donmoyer.

Quittie Creek Nature Park- Ann Lasky.   Reported that the Quittie Park heard from DCNR, and they are to receive their grant for 31,000 (approx.)  They have much clean up to do on the land, and would like to make and access opening to Route 422 across from Hoss’s restaurant. 

Swatara Sojourn.  Title “The Ultimate Water Park”, Sojourn.  Shore support:  Laurie Andrews, Jack Stauffer. Hitches and moving the canoes:  Dick Blouch, Fred Folmer, Dave Wentling.    Food: Dick and June Bouch breakfast, Ann and David Lasky pizza, The Pot Pie from Ono Fire Company. Jo Ellen will contact Betty and George to see if they want to do Seaman’s Subs for lunch Saturday, and if George wants to be the photographer again.  Jo Ellen will contact Weidle’s trash pickup for a dumpster.  Arnold will give a talk on portage safety.  A tire run may have to be to Ketterings on Saturday.  Jack and Jo Ellen work on taking remaining tires for recycling on Monday, return the van to Mease Motors and trailer to UHaul.

Swatara State Park- Article in the Lebanon Daily News that construction is taking place in the park. 

Swatara Watershed Park.      Mortgage is presently:   $35,811.92.           SWA is working with Harry Fox for a possible Car show in 2012. 

West Lebanon-Source of well pollution being verified.

Other:  SWA unsuccessfully applied for an advertizing ZIP grant from the Lebanon Daily News.

Next meeting:  Thursday, March 8. The normal meeting date is the Women’s Hall of Fame luncheon.  The April meeting will be the 4th and we will clean up Swatara Watershed Park.  

Dates:   Day of Caring :  April 28

Minutes submitted by Ann Lasky

Swatara Watershed Association January 4, 2012

In attendance:  Dick & June Blouch, Tom Embich, Fred Folmer, Ann Lasky, Jo Ellen Litz, Jack Stouffer.

Business:

American Water:  George Cradic per Embich—In 2012, chlorine will be added to drinking water.

Bordner Cabin:  Road is Closed.  

Chesapeake Bay:  From PA DEP on PA’s Draft Phase 2 Chesapeake Bay Watershed  Implementation Plan.  Please take advantage of the 12/17–1/30 comment period.  http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/chesapeake_bay_program/10513

Conservancy Dick Blouch – Experiencing a transition with a new administrative assistant and treasurer as well as three new board members.

Conservation DistrictsStephanie Harmon –

Donations and Bequests & Financial

Donations from S&S Wildlife Control; Ann Lasky; and dues from Sharon Grumbein, Trexlertown. 

On a motion by Embich/Lasky, Fred Folmer was elected as secretary. 

Eagle Scouts: 

FIG: 

Floods, Droughts:  245 parcels along the Swatara in Lebanon County

Little SwataraFred Folmer --

Marcellus:  Science is looking at a correlation to fracking with 4.0 earthquakes in Ohio.

MS4  (storm water):  Next meeting on January 24 at South Lebanon Township.

Northern Swatara Watershed and Sweet Arrow Lake Report:  Denise Donmoyer—events posted at www.SweetArrowLakePark.com

Quittie Creek and Park Report Ann Lasky reported that they were successful at acquiring a DCNR grant for the Smith property.   

Swatara State ParkAngel Croll  The project was awarded and work has commenced.  Anticipated completion date is July 2012 barring any unforeseen issues.

Ø      Scope of work:  3 parking areas- Waterville bridge, Lickdale, Trout Run, and Swopes Valley (no restrooms) 2 pedestrian bridges- Rail Trail over Mill Creek and Sand Siding (downstream) over Swatara Creek Trail work- rail trail between Gold Mine Rd and Swopes Valley Rd and Old State Road (Bear Hole Trail) between Waterville Bridge and Swopes Valley Road

Ø      Work trailers and staging area is located off Swopes Valley Road near Old State Road.    Old State Road remains accessible to the public by vehicle from Swopes Valley to the fossil site; by foot or bicycle between fossil site and Waterville bridge.  If you or a designee would like access to the cabin, please let me know and I will make arrangements. 

Ø      Encourage folks to check Swatara State Park’s web page for advisories regarding accessibility to park trails.  This is important to boaters as the Sand Siding bridge will impact the water trail.  Aids to Navigation signs will direct boaters around the causeway which will block normal passage along the Swatara.  When safety requires, areas of the park will be closed to visitors.

Ø      PA Fish & Boat Commission passed regulations for small watercraft.  Any person in a canoe, kayak, or boat 16 feet or less are required to wear a personal floatation device between Nov. 1 and April 30.  They hope to decrease the number of deaths caused by hypothermia.

Swatara Watershed Park:  Our ‘mortgage’ stands at $_36,079.42__

Ø      Embich has a few months off from teaching, and has offered to coordinate cleanup of the Park.  Volunteers can help to clean up litter; elevate the shed to keep it from freezing into the ground; reassemble a picnic table that broken in the flood; retrieve a few other tables that have been inaccessible due to swamp like conditions; letter canoes with registration numbers.

Ø      Campers were asked to cooperate to remove flood debris from their sites. 

Ø      As a follow-up to a meeting with FEMA/PEMA on December 16 at 10AM, on a Stouffer/Lasky motion, a resolution appointing Litz as SWAs designated agent to execute for and in behalf of SWA, a public entity established under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, all required forms and documents for the purpose of obtaining financial assistance under the Robert T Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, passed unanimously.  Members present signed as witnesses. 

Ø      On December 27, Field Inspector Lynn Steincamp LV visited Swatara Watershed Park to inspect TS Lee damage.

Water Works:  Union Canal Lock property cards and a GIS aerial map were reviewed.  The property owner was asked if two lots are being offered to encompass the entire lock.  Blouch will further engage the Conservancy as possible partners if the project moves forward.

Swatara Water Trail: 

SRBC .

West Lebanon Township: Still cooperating with DEP to research the source of pollution. 

Other

Ø      Since a fire, John Worrilow has moved to 158 Hearthstone Lane, Lebanon 17042.  He is also trying to get his home treated from flooding so that he can move back into it.

Ø      Lebanon County’s Long Term Disaster Recover Group is helping people affect by TS Lee flooding.  Mary Ann LeVan is leading a team to call people on FEMAs registration list to inquire about any unmet needs.  If you or someone you know has unmet needs, call 717 376 0128 and leave your name, phone and case numbers assigned by FEMA.

Next Meeting:  February 1, 9:30AM; Guest Speaker Steph Harmon

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