Minutes of the September 27, 2006 meeting of the Council on Environmental Quality, held in the Holcombe Room, 5th Floor, 79 Elm Street, Hartford.

PRESENT:  Thomas Harrison (Chairman), Howard Beach, John Mandyck, Earl Phillips, Richard Sherman, Norman VanCor, Wesley Winterbottom, Karl Wagener (Executive Director).

Chairman Harrison convened the meeting at 9:08 AM and determined that a quorum was present. 

Sherman made a motion to approve the August 23, 2006 minutes.  Second by Winterbottom.  Approved unanimously, with VanCor and Beach abstaining for the reason that they had not been present.

Chairman’s Report

Chairman Harrison reported that the paperwork to establish the Environmental Analyst position had been submitted.

Executive Director’s Report

Wagener turned to Mandyck, who congratulated Harrison for receiving the Clyde O. Fisher, Jr. Award from the Environmental Law Section of the Connecticut Bar Association, awarded for accomplishments in the protection of natural resources and the environment, and led the Council in applause.

Review of State Agency Projects

New Milford Water Pollution Control Facility – Wagener said that he had reviewed the Environmental Impact Evaluation for this project, and said that it adequately addressed the expansion of the sewer service area, and did not recommend commenting.

Others – Wagener said the Hartford Courant reported that all parties had agreed to the additional studies of the University of Connecticut water supply that had been discussed at the August meeting.  Sherman said the citizen groups considered the public participation opportunities in the previous Fenton River study to be inadequate, and members expressed hope that it will be sufficient in these new studies.

Harrison noted the newspaper accounts of a new proposed solution to the wastewater problems in Old Saybrook, which could involve small treatment systems.  Sally Snyder of the Department of Environmental Protection, speaking from the audience, offered to send forward a recent report to the Council.

Discussion of State Open Space Planning

Members discussed the draft letters prepared by staff regarding revisions to the state Green Plan, and approved them subject to one minor change and a quick review by e-mail in the following days.

Citizen Complaints

Wagener and members reviewed the list of complaints that had been distributed in advance of the meeting.  Several were discussed at some length, including the public participation procedures associated with two dock permits in coastal areas; Wagener said he would get more data and report back at the next meeting.  VanCor expressed a desire for the Council to do more on the problem of road sweepings, and members agreed.  Beach mentioned new concerns about asphalt millings in New Jersey, and Wagener mentioned that asphalt recycling was at the center of the Colchester complaint.  Members expressed doubt that it could recommend the requested ban of incandescent bulbs, unless more data were available, and expressed optimism that the market might phase out most incandescent bulbs.

Wagener introduced Frank Plona, Project Manager of the Farmington Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited, who showed several slides of construction projects in his town (Canton), including culverts that could impede fish passage, storm drains where sheet flow would send less sediment to the streams, detention basins in wetland areas that were dry, and clearing and construction within twenty feet of a stream.  He wondered why these occurred and what could be done.  Members thanked Mr. Plona for the illuminating photos, and said these questions would be included in the Council’s review of inland wetlands issues.

Harrison adjourned the meeting at 11:21.