Next Granite Lake Association Meeting scheduled for Saturday July 18, 2020 at 9:30am

Minutes of 2019 meeting will need to be approved at the July 18, 2020 meeting.

Granite Lake Association Annual Meeting

 July 20, 2019 

Present: Bill Steiniger. Pres.; Tyke Lavigne, V-Pres.; Tom Newcombe, Treasurer; Sally Ripley, Secretary; Bob Maden, Member-at-Large; Mike Guida, Water Quality Chair; Dita Englund, Membership Chair; Cayla Pagniucci, Newsletter Chair/Membership; Patty Maden & Sharon Iagulli, Lake Host Co-ordinators, 

Congratulations to the GLA, founded 70 years ago this June, in Emil Grube’s barn for the purpose of protecting the lake. What foresight. 

After a salute to the flag, Bill got the meeting rolling at 9:35 by introducing the board members and our guest speaker, Scott Ashley from the office of DES. 

Secretary’s 2018 minutes were to put a vote and passed. Tom Newcombe reported that the Association is in good financial shape, dues and income exceeded expenses leaving us about $4,000. vs about $2,700. We continued to have donations for our water quality account: $1695. Last year we donated $1,000. to the Harris Center for kick-off campaign to purchase 515 acres across from little Granite Lake for the protection of the watershed and lake quality. Treasurer’s report also passed easily. 

Most recent lab reports on Granite Lake are posted on our website. Generally our numbers are well above the state average. Seeing the disc at deep level measures the transparency - about 8.4 meters [27-28 ft.] recently though our average is 3.3m (probably lower because of ll the rain last year)/ On phosphorous we didn’t do so well -- 5.micrograms/meter, which is still more than half of the state average. Tom’s water monitoring report passed. 

Scott began his presentation by saying we have data for only the biggest 200 or so waterbodies out of about 8-900 in the state. They have few analysts to collect all the info they would like, sometimes preferring winter to summer for a stable platform to take core samples. During the winter the lakes are ‘asleep’ and make for a good baseline. They have studied acid rain for 30 years and found the lakes are more stable than before and some are improving. They are doing long range monitoring for climate change, finding certain plant species dominate native ones and drive them out. We are having heavy rain events with warmer weather and water. The lakes are experiencing more storm water, abuse and overuse, toxins, and algae. One algae, cyanobacteria, is particularly troubling as some are found to cause neurological problems such as ALS. Much more study is needed, he said, because there are more than the 2 toxins we even know about, and nitrogen may be involved as well. Biologists started noticing it n the 70’s that nutrients and raw sewage had somehow an impact in the ’80’s. A few weeks ago Bill noticed a blue/green algae bloom in the brook nearby which stank badly; luckily it got flushed away in a rainstorm. Scott said that pond scum can also vary widely in toxins. Other causes may include: pharmaceuticals, fireproofing materials, lawn care products and micro plastics. 

Many of the problems NH has are due to the fact that we have many pristine lakes which are attractive to many tourists and potential new residents. It’s all a balancing act, Scott said. Tourism is NH’s second largest industry. We have some ok plants [ Jewell weed, alien brain, wild rice, cranberries] and some invasive ones such as Eurasian milfoil.  New ponds continue to have more and more vegetation: the natural progression is to turn them into bogs and eventually dry land. If you would like to ask him additional questions his e-mail is scott.ashley@des.nh.gov 

Bill reminded us that there is good news too. More awareness and more new sewage systems installed every year. Our water is in pretty good shape, partly due to the efforts of the GLA, We go to local planning board and selectmen's' meetings in order to keep tabs on waterfront permits, road culverts and runoff issues. For instance, little Granite Lake was getting higher and higher so DES was invited to come down and take a look. The water could no longer exit; the owner decided not to repair the old dam; it is now returning to its natural state. 

Sharon reported for the Lake Host program by giving a big thank you to the volunteers. They have inspected over 300 boats & kayaks & canoes so far this year. Her report passed. 

Sorry, no loon chicks or even a nest this year. The Loon Preservation Society representative said it could not pinpoint why the adult loon died last year. The chick was pecked to death by some loon. The number of chicks born this year state wide is down, but they are not sure why. 

Bob Englund spoke about another CPR/AED course to be held this year. It will be Aug. 1 st. at 5:30. He said that a life can be saved with an AED if administered in 2-3 minutes. The AED’s are located at the Chapel in the kitchen cabinet, Nicoletti’s entrance way, & in the garden shed at the Englunds’: the Chapel is the only one useable in winter. If people were certified 2 years ago, they need to be again this year. 

To conclude - Bill knew how hot the weather would be so he passed out a summary of what he would say. To be brief, the Harris Center was able to purchase the 515 acre land tract for conservation - now amounting to 30% of our watershed. “The project was made possible by grants from NH Dept of Environmental Aquatic Resource Mitigation Fund, the Quabbin to Cardison Partnership, as well as donations from the Granite Lake community and many friends of the Super Sanctuary. “ The parcel also connects with a corridor of wilderness from Spoonwood Pond all the way to Rte.9 for animals and people. 

Thank you for helping to conserve this valuable piece. 

The Granite Lake Association bought the water rights in 1951 and the island in 1958 for the use of its members and their families. It voted to pass on the water rights to the Granite Lake Village District which was formed to purchase liability insurance at a municipal rate. The GLVD now has control over the dam, but the state has some say over the levels. It was rated a high risk dam last summer, which incurs some higher fees so the tax did go up some for 2019. 

The board is currently working with the state coordinator for road salt in NH. Please try to reduce/eliminate any you may have coming into the lake at your residence. When if gets too thick on the lake bottom, it prevents the water from ‘turning over’ in the spring and fall thus preventing oxygenation leading to an anoxic zone where fish cannot live. At the same time allowing phosphorous to escape from the lake sediments. 

The beaver deceiver is doing well as designed. Granite Lake road has 3 new or up-graded drains as well as drainage ditches filled with stone and has finally been repaved after 22 years. helping to keep the run-off cleaner. Finally, after much nagging, there may be grant money coming to improve the gravel fire station parking lot which drains right across the road into the ramp culvert. There are more areas of concern on North Shore Rd, and West Shore Rd. Bill and Bob talked about the need for setbacks -- primary building setback 50 ft. from shore, natural woodland buffer another 150 ft.& best of all would be 250 ft. buffer. Please check to see what you can do for your property by having shrubs or plants along the shore to keep water from rushing into the lake. Putting crushed stone along the drip edge of the roof is another good way of filtering the water entering the lake. 

Bill took a few questions - one was about lowering the lake 5 ft. instead of just 2 as we usually do. The GLVD would have to decide that...go to their meeting in April...short answer is that the Lake trout eggs need to be covered mid- Oct. Also if we take the water down for the whole winter, there is lots of erosion. 

Motion to pay the Chapel for use of the building was passed $350.

Next Year’s Meeting Date: July 18, 2020 9:30am

Adjourned by vote at 11:30