Notes from FOGHP Task Force Meeting

March 4, 2017

Kettle Pond Visitors Center

Present : Mike Counihan, Enid Flaherty, Alicia Echinger, Bill Pulsifer, Dennis Bowman, Joanne Smardin, Bill Barber, Pat Barber, Mary-Gail Smith

Roadmap for Seeking Funding for Evaluation Impact Study:

Dennis Bowman reviewed the Revised Road Map. Is easier to understand and has better visuals.

Discussed recent meeting with Senator Algiere. Algiere is meeting with CRMC and DEM. Algiere trying to get funding through State Budget.

FOGHP asking Charlestown and South Kingstown for $25,000 each for the Project. The Towns need to work together.

The Nature Conservancy has expressed interest in partnering with the Project. Follow-up meeting being scheduled.

Dennis referred to a 1970 study detailing negative impacts of a permanent breachway on Green Hill Pond.

Mike Counihan and Bill Barber commented on low water levels in the Pond, both in past and present.

South Kingstown is resuming septic inspections, beginning with Green Hill. Letters going out from Town to homeowners this month.

Joanne asked a question about the location of the Green Hill Watershed. Alicia provided some information. Bill referred to a map. A more detailed map will be obtained.

Discussed using oysters to filter contaminants in GHP. The Nature Conservancy has been a proponent of this approach. Final results of a study about this done in Ninigret and Green Hill Pond are not yet available.

Growth for FOGHP and Building Consensus:

Bill Pulsifer reviewed his efforts contacting Association Presidents. He would like to have a Point Person from each Association to communicate about efforts of FOGHP to their group.

Senator Algiere suggested we be in communication with Associations in Eastern Ninigret Pond. Alicia will get contact information for two groups—Tockwotten Cove and Old Tockwotten Cove. Need to investigate The Arches neighborhood.

Bill is meeting with Rob Lyons of Ocean House Marina. Will also meet with the owner of the Marina near

Creek Bridge.

Discussion of the South Kingstown Town Plan Process and the need for collaboration.

Contact list of Task Force members and the complete list of all FOGHP members circulated. Updates made.

Strategy for Association newsletters discussed.

Alicia said Salt Ponds Coalition needs Pond Watchers. Joanne Smardin expressed interest on behalf of her husband. SPC will have Pond Watcher Training on April 22nd. Alicia discussed the monitoring sites in GHP and the rationale for them.

Salt Ponds will be leading a Kayak paddle on GHP August 12. Departure from Ocean Ridge Civic Assn.

Salt Ponds will also do a Safari on GHP geared to children.

Presentations need to be made at Association meetings.


Newsletter content about FOGHP for Associations:

Enid Flaherty suggested that she, Joanne, Bill and perhaps Ann Manion work together to create content suitable for Association newsletters, Web sites and Facebook. Need to have a consistent message with vetted materials.

Enid read draft of content for newsletters which included a list of people and organizations contacted.

Additions were made to the list.

People will be invited to join FOGHP and to attend meetings via Association newsletters.

Discussion about how to communicate our message. Email and hardcopy newsletters and Association bulletin boards.

SPC Kayak trip scheduled for August 12th will be publicized. RSVP’s will be sought and directed to SPC.

SK septic inspections resuming in Green Hill in March will be publicized.

Communications with Green Hill Homeowners Not Part of an Association:

Joanne Smardin reviewed her progress identifying Green Hill Pond homeowners who are not receiving communications via an Association. Landowners to be included.

10 streets directly impacting the Pond have been identified from public records. May be 100 or so people not part of an Association. Interacting with these people will be a focus.

Need to find a Point Person for the streets not part of an Association.

Methods of communication discussed: Mail, door-to-door and perhaps a neighborhood event. Good grass roots outreach.

Lack of funds for mailings discussed. Alicia reminded the group that SPC will act as fiduciary for receiving funds. Holding off on doing this until after we define roles with The Nature Conservancy.

Dennis reviewed 2 research studies dating from 1961 and 1975 which predict that Green Hill Pond will be more of a fresh water system if no remedial action is taken.

Web site Update and Facebook Update:

Mike Counihan has created a section on The Green Hill Civic Association’s Web site for FOGHP. Our information will be accessed by a button on the site’s left side. Some content is posted. Mike will manage the site.

Bill will do the same for ORCA. FOGHP will direct people to these sites.

Response mechanism will be via a Gmail account temporarily directed to Mary-Gail. Bill will work on this.

Using these two Association Web sites has merit. A natural audience and no need to build awareness.

No need for our own Web site at the moment.

Process needs to be developed. An editor and a site monitor are needed.

Bill says Facebook is ready to be launched. We will be creating and vetting content.

Plan for Next Large Group Meeting:

Discussed combining with SPC June 22nd meeting about the 5% rule for aquaculture. Bill said his feedback is that Saturday mornings are best. Mary-Gail concurred. Next large group meeting will be in June at ORCA-either the Club House or the Pavilion. June 10th and June 24th being considered.

Getting More FOGHP Members Involved:

The concept of a Point Person to take the lead on a project discussed.

FOGHP Organizational Structure:

Group feels is best to continue as we are for the time being. Still defining our roles. This will be Item #2 at our next Task Force meeting. Next Task Force meeting will be in May. Mary-Gail to get dates from KP Visitors Center.


Joanne Smardin would like to take the lead on monitoring the SK Web site to identify items impacting FOGHP. She mentioned The Conservation Commission. Alicia suggested Elise Torello and Pam Rubinoff as contacts. SK Planning and Zoning discussed.


Meeting was adjourned at 11:40 a.m.