Board Meeting Highlights

August 16, 2020 - Annual Meeting

  • Hemlocks recent bylaws changes now do not require a quorum to be present for any board meeting.
  • Hemlocks bylaws now provide for up to ten regular board members and two special board members (totaling twelve members); previously, the bylaws specified up to seven regular members and three special members (totaling ten members).
  • Three existing regular board members were elected to continue serving, beginning a new term:Phil Sobocinski, Vice President; Bob Horswill, Regular Member; Bob Berdan, Regular Member. Two individuals new to the board were elected to the board as Regular Members: Sarah Johnson; Licia Johnson.
    One individual was elected to switch from Special Member to Regular Member: Al Eschenbauch. The Hemlocks Board now consists of ten Regular Members, and two Special Members representing charter organizations, for a total of twelve members.
  • Three adult hikes and one school hike were held last fiscal year; yet to come this year are three adult hikes and one school hike.
  • Hemp nettle treatment was conducted this fiscal year by DNR personnel, overseen by Carly Lapin, Regional Ecologist, using mechanical means and not chemical treatments; the DNR crew applied 185 person-hours.
  • Mechanical hemp nettle removal is now the preferred method; in future, mechanical removal contractors may be needed, with financial support from Hemlocks
  • The team of Carly Lapin and Bob Horswill will formulate future invasive treatments
  • The Board will soon tackle a comprehensive Hemlocks signage review and improvement program.
  • Trail usage by visitors seems quite vigorous recently
  • Lake and lakeshore programs should be considered for Hemlocks public programs
  • As the towns nearby to Hemlocks property begin to consider initiatives proposed for ATV trail and route development, Hemlocks may need to evaluate impacts on the Hemlocks trail users as they pursue quietude.

August 7, 2020 - Regular Meeting

  • The Board voted to approve the amendment to the Code of Regulations to increase the size of the Board by two members.
  • The Board approved the agenda for the Annual Meeting which will be held August 16, 2020 at 3 p.m. at the outdoor pavilion near the Presque Isle town offices and library.  Social distance will be maintained and it will be a business meeting only.

May 13, 2020 - Regular Meeting

  • Eric Benn has joined the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Van Vliet Hemlocks, and will assume also the duties of Treasurer.
  • Postponements are necessary for activities such as school hikes and naturalist sessions because of the coronavirus.
  • The annual meeting in 2020 will be held at an as-yet undetermined location, instead of Olson’s Point.
  • DNR will establish chainsaw training for trail maintenance volunteers in the future.
  • The Hemlocks treasury is healthy.
  • The Discovery Center has installed coronavirus safety measures, kept all staff at full time work mostly at home, and has received Federal Payroll Protection funding through June.
  • Discovery Center staff also are stepping up efforts to identify grant funding for the Center.
  • Discovery Center will employ six interns this summer on a schedule that postpones interaction with the public until coronavirus threats have been reduced.
  • The hemp nettle eradication in 2020 will proceed with hand cutting only, with no chemicals to be applied. DNR personnel will do the work when deemed suitably safe from coronavirus exposure
  • Sugarbush trail will be closed for 2020 as a followup to hemp nettle eradication.
  • Road signs with rustic appearance will be provided by the DNR to offer directions for visitors accessing Hemlocks trails.
  • Hemlocks sponsored three adult trail hikes and one grade school hike last year. For 2020, three adult hikes are planned tentatively.
  • The Hemlocks board is considering adding two members to the current ten-member board to bring the total board membership to twelve members.