OH Steering Committee Meeting Minutes,
April 6, 2021, via Zoom
Present Members: Carter Bascom, Josh Alper, Stroker Rogovin, Phoebe Howe, John Meserve, Gerry Whiting, Kim “Schroeder” Steward, Saphrona Stetson, Jed Davis, Emily Benson, Emma Brandt, Dawson Winch, Alex Ziko, Richard Stetson, Dal Brodhead, Elizabeth Seabury, Bob McIntosh, John Gross, Brian Post, Heather Wingate, Eric Gotthold, Jesse Billingham, Miles Howard, Ken Olson, Doug Shaffer, Michael Dudley, and Bridget Qualey.
1) Approve Minutes of Last Meeting, March 9 (Carter Bascom)
Gerry has some comments on the meeting minutes from 3.9.2021.
Gerry made a motion to change the language in the meeting minutes from March to read “Stroker can contact AMC development who created the plaque at Lakes of the Clouds Hut”. Moose seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
2) Treasurer’s Report (Alex Ziko)
Alex reported that the insurance premium for 2021 is paid. In surprising news, the OHA was named as a beneficiary from Barbara Sittinger. The organization received approximately $8,000. Alex discussed and clarified some discrepancies from the past month’s budget. Moose made a motion to approve the Treasurer’s Report. Stroker Seconded. The Treasurer’s Report was passed unanimously.
3) Cabin (Stroker)
2021 Cabin Policy and use
Emily Benson and Brian Post updated the Steering Committee on the Cabin. There is a simple reservation system online. Currently, there are two reservations on the books for June 2021. Emily and Brian will work out details on a lockbox and reservation system. There is currently a system in place, and the OHA is accepting reservations starting May 1st, 2021. Emily is in charge of the lock box. Elizabeth Seabury is a back up to Emily, and one of the YOH in the valley could be another back up option, if necessary. Phoebe posted a few links to the website with rules, links to the reservation calendar (see links below). There was discussion on where the lockbox would be located. Emily and Peter Benson plan to figure out those details. Emily and Brian are available if anyone questions.
4)The Washburn Land (Carter Bascom)
Status of negotiations with the Owner of the Property
Carter has been in communications with the property owner since the last subcommittee meeting, at which point the subcommittee decided to let Gervais know that the OH is actively interested in a striking a deal.
The most recent email communication to the property owner is a message explaining that the OHA would like an option to purchase the property and left things open ended for the owner to contact us on their terms.
The subcommittee has been through various discussions on what the future plans are for the campaign.
The subcommittee is working on creating graphics and other communications. The goal is to keep this information confidential since this work is still in development. As we move forward, the Washburn Subcommittee will bring as much information as possible to the Steering Committee to make informed and educated decisions.
Comment from Doug Shaffer: Thank you to Stroker, Alex, and the subcommittee for putting together a spreadsheet and numbers with options. You have all spent a lot of time and effort and it is much appreciated.
Question from Dal: Have we considered purchasing land but selling off the cabin parcel? Yes. This alternative was discussed by the Committee when we first discussed the purchase of the property [the fall of 2019]. The main concern with this approach is that it wouldn’t protect our use and enjoyment of the current OH cabin. Use of the property that was incompatible with our use of ours is one of the main reasons we’re purchasing the Washburn Land in the first place.
With the help of a spreadsheet, Stroker described various options of how the OHA could move forward using the porperty. As it stands now, there are 4 options. Stroker created a Facebook post to poll some OH Members on their thoughts on renting out the cabin. Bridget Qualey asked for clarification of a line item in the spreadsheet for the management budget. She thinks that the budgeted amount seemed very low. Stroker responded that the $2K annual allotment for property management was based on local rates, and if an increase was necessary, it could be accommodated with a slight raise in the rental rate. Doug Shaffer asked if the bridge could support a septic truck. Stroker explained that in the absence of an engineering inspection, that was is unknown at this time. If a truck couldn’t make it up the road, one solution to servicing the septic system would be to run a line through the woods down to the truck, using vacuum pumping. John Gross shared his thoughts on best maintenance practices and thanked everyone that took time to create the spreadsheet. John asked if any thought has been given to purchase with the abutting parcel owners? Yes, Stroker answered this question. The short answer is no other abutting parcel owner is interested in acquiring the land. Dawson asked if there is any asbestos in the property. We do not know. Bob McIntosh thanked all involved in the conversation. Bob recommends that we spend the money to have an inspection prior to purchasing the property. Bob also made a comment that he believes when a property changes hands, that it may have to be brought up to a current code. John Gross followed up on Bob’s comment about the fire egress. Stroker mentioned that a fire suppression system may have to be added, such as smoke detectors, extinguishers, and other improvements. Bob voiced his concern that there must be a clear fundraising goal before the campaign is started. Dawson asked what the cost is to put in a well at the Current Cabin? The answer currently is unknown. One option might be to supply the Current Cabin with fresh water through a line run from the Washburn well. Stroker shared his thoughts about the fundraising goal. Dawson believes one major issue is access for parking. Ken Olson added that the option would include an inspection. Ken mentioned that the campaign has to be clear with its vision and mission which includes a solid budget. Brian Post is concerned that the discussions are vague with the current owner and wants to know where they stand. Carter provided the history of the conversation with the owner and shared that no formal discussion has been made. There is an ongoing conversation with the property owner. John asked if there is a strategy for the fundraising campaign. Phoebe clarified that yes, there is a plan in place.
Carter reminded everyone to keep any numbers discussed confidential.
5) Event Planning (Phoebe, Stroker)
Spring Reunion/Cabin Opening (5/15)
Fallfest & Highland Center Status (11/6)? Featured Speaker?
Stroker asked if it possible to get up the cabin open two weeks earlier than anticipated. A discussion about the opening of the cabin discovered that there would be too many conflicts with May 15th, 2021. The opening date was moved to May 22nd, 2021. Richard is requesting anyone who would like to attend Please contact [email protected]. Brian Post will block off the weekend of May 22nd, 2021 from the reservation system. Oktoberfest is scheduled for October 16th, 2021. The Fallfest Reunion is scheduled for November 6th, 2021. Phoebe is planning Fallfest, so please contact her if you have any suggestions for the event. Stroker suggested a program on Brad Washburn might be appropriate.
6)Website (Schroeder, Brian Post)
Update on OH email addresses
Brian Post has been working hard behind the scenes to tweak the website with merchandise and reservation updates. The OH is moving from Constant Contact to Mail Chimp. Stroker asked who is currently receiving messages when an inquiry is sent to the website. Schroeder clarified that [email protected] is managed by Brian. [email protected] inquiries generally go to Schroeder. [email protected] inquiries are sent to Alex. [email protected] inquiries are sent to EB and Miles. [email protected] inquiries are sent to Brian. Any shop merchandise order inquiries are sent to Brian, and then are forwarded to JT. Brian mentioned that there are people managing all inquiries. Benny Taylor is the new contact for any OH that have an interest in volunteering and their questions should be sent directly to [email protected].
7) Croo Photo Project (Emily Griffin, Benny Taylor)
Greenleaf going up this summer?
Needs at other huts
Greenleaf photos are going up to the hut this summer. Phoebe is planning to provide an update for the needs at the other huts.
8) Hut System (Emily, Benny)
Bethany Taylor is taking over as the new Huts Manager. Four huts are opening at the end of May. The full-service season should start on May 31st, 2021.
More information can be found on OUTDOORS.ORG.
A link to the AMC’s blog might help answer questions on the opening of the hut system.
9) Resuscitator (Miles Howard)
Miles reported that he is receiving good input for the Resuscitator. Miles would like to see more photos and artwork from OH members as well promote any volunteer opportunities that are open to OH members. All submissions are due by April 15th, 2021 and a proof will be out by April 20th/April 21st. Moose suggested that someone reach out to Becky Fullerton for photos. Stroker added that any written historical pieces can be shared with Becky Fullerton. Miles will plan to share and re-emphasize the need for photos in an email to all OH. Schroeder suggested that the Facebook page would be a great tool for finding photos. Contact Miles with inquiries at either [email protected] or [email protected].
10) New & Other Bidness
Eric asked what the voting would look like for the cabin decision. Stroker mentioned that more time is necessary before a decision can be made.
Schroeder made a motion to amend Article V, §1 of the Bylaws to change the language to the Steering Committee shall consist of “not fewer than seven nor more than thirteen members”. EB seconded. The motion was passed unanimously. Josh Alper will make the change. Gerry mentioned that Ken Olson brought up the need to have a financial planner. Moose made a motion to create an investment subcommittee. Stroker will serve as ex-officio. Alex asked for clarification on the job description of the chair. Moose suggested that a small list of names be brought to the Steering Committee and that a policy be drafted. Moose suggested that the committee be responsible to meet with an advisor to talk about planning for each up-and-coming year. Alex asked how members should be chosen for the subcommittee. The first task is to find an advisor and create a policy. The advisor would help write the language. A suggestion was made to inquiry on the OH FB page for anyone that might be interested in helping the OH as an investment manager and to utilize our members. Schroeder can also mention this topic in the newsletter that will go out to all members. Stroker suggested that the subcommittee would need to be in place by June 2021. Alex will provide an update at the next meeting. It was passed unanimously.
Strker will send a clarification email to all board members about the Washburn Place.
11) Next Steering Committee Meeting: 5/11/21, 6:30 PM, Zoom