April 6, 2009 Stormwater Committee Meeting

Ann Hoffnar
Jenny Reed
Diane Cameron
Wendy Bell
Kit Gage
Jim Fary
Holly Olson
Ed Murtagh

Kit gave an update on the March 7 Takoma Park Outreach Presentation. Fifty people attended. There were three community meeting requests from the presentation.
Jenny and Kit gave an update of their meeting with the Takoma Park Arborist. The City Tree Ordnance restricts excavation within 50 feet of significant trees. That impacts virtually all our rain garden projects. We will have to submit plans to the arborist for approval. If we are unable to obtain an approval, we may have to switch to a BayScaping landscape projects. Kit will advise Takoma Foundation if that is the case. These project would fit well under the grant.

The CASA de Maryland training is going well. There were 20 participants at the class room training session. 6 workers were trained at at the first on-the-job training installation project. The next training project is scheduled for Wednesday.

We discussed the usefulness of DEP obtaining 40 hours of labor from CASA de Maryland that we could tap for our larger rain garden projects. Kit will approach Pam about this possibility.

We discussed the need to coordinate our soil mix deliveries. We will have a small delivery on April 25 to the North Hills of Sligo Creek for a kick-off in Heather Phipps’ neighborhood. There are some potential projects that could also receive deliveries that day in Forest Estates. Kit will coordinate all the deliveries with DEP.

Jenny will develop a plant list rather than wait for DEP. We will keep the list simple an short.

Kit also mentioned that the Parks has excessive White Turtle head flowers that we could use on our projects. We request 250 for our rain garden projects.

Community Gardens
The Sligo Overlook community Garden is going well. We have been invited to help with a stormwater management project to address the runoff at the site. Kit is working on a CBT mini-grant for the project. CBT asked us to submit the grant–an indication of their growing respect for our work.The Parks will do the preparation work. Casa or neighbors will plant. The grant pays for planning and designing and for plants.

The Pinecrest Community Garden is going forward.

We have been getting many press inquires. We need a consistent messages. Suggested messages

  • There are 20,000 homeowners in the Sligo Creek watershed and half of them will have to install rain gardens or other stormwater practices on their properties to make a difference.
  • We also need to see many projects on commercial and institutional properties, houses of worship and apartment buildings.
  • Water must be contained where it falls so it can soak into the soil–not be sent to the storm drains and into the creek.
  • Projects can be simple, like routing downspouts so they don’t send water to the street.
  • We want our landscaping to be beautiful, but it should also promote pollination and prevent pollution.

There is to be a National Geographic promo on TV tomorrow! Heather Phipps arranged with a friend who works with National Geographic. They will talk about her raingarden.

Greening of of the Wheaton CBD
We discussed the “greening” of the Wheaton CBD. Holly recommended that we contact the Latino Economic Development Council (LEDC.) They have a sustainability mandate. They have purchased wind power for the member businesses. Holly also recommended that the communities send letters of support for this effort.

New Silver Spring Library
The committee is interested in participating in the Silver Spring Library Charrettes. There are 4 sessions. We may have to tag team this activity. Diane and Jenny are interested in participating. Ed noted that Don Collins from the North Hills of Sligo Creek may also be interested. We need to coordinate.

Rivernet Conference in Baltimore
Kit mentioned that she is doing a presentation at a workshop at the Rivernet Conference in Baltimore. The conference is from May 29 to May 31. Many interesting workshop activities.

Notes prepared by Ann Hoffnar and Ed Murtagh