Enchanted Circle Trout Unlimited
Member Meeting– December 9, 2014
Board Room, La Fonda Hotel
In Attendance: Bill Adkison, Marilyn Farrow, Ken Harrold, Bart Hazleton, Robby Henrikson, Jim Herman, , Bill Owen, Doug Palmer, Jason Sides, Nick Streit and Ted Terry.
The meeting was called to order by president Bill Adkison at 6:35 pm. He then opened discussion of a proposal from Toner Mitchell, New Mexico’s Public Lands Coordinator for Trout Unlimited, for support of the Rio Grande Cutthroat exhibit at the Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) in Los Alamos. The exhibit can be used to showcase the plight of the Rio Grande cutts. The center is a new state of the art building near the high school intended for education and outreach and has a planned opening on Earth Day, 2015. The funding being sought from the TU chapters is to cover the initial expense for the aquarium, chillers, etc., with no maintenance assistance to come from the chapters.
A total of $10,000 in funding is being sought from all TU chapters in New Mexico; the Truchas chapter has pledged $5,000 in 2014 with more possible if needed; Bosque and Gila chapters are new and consequently unlikely to be able to make significant contributions. A fundraiser was held at the Los Alamos theater and raised $600; it is assumed the Council will help fill in any gaps.
The Enchanted Circle Chapter (ECTU) budget sets aside 50% for conservation, 25% for outreach and education, and 25% for administration and fundraising. At this time, with commitments already made to the Red River project and engineering expenses on the Hondo, it was moved and seconded that ECTU give $3,000 from the education budget to the project. The motion passed unanimously.
Robby Henrikson, biologist with the Taos Pueblo game and fish, Department of Natural Resources, expressed an interest in establishing a similar aquarium on the Pueblo. He currently has 30 gallon tanks that could be used; he may request ECTU support for a Trout in the Classroom project.
A proposal for support of Fly Fishing in the Classroom (FFITC) – Eagle Nest Encore Program was presented by Nick Streit. The project would engage 16 students in the 6th through 8th grades in fly fishing activities, including trout biology and physiology, entomology, fly tying, knots and casting and an intro to fly casting and equipment. The class will be led by professional instructors.
Equipment purchases might include fly-tying vices and tools; some equipment might be available for rental from Doc’s and Nick’s supplies; there are 10 ECTU rods and reels that could be used. In the past Temple Fork and The Sierra Club have been supportive of such endeavors. Discussion included the value of getting the local young people on the water and engaged with ECTU. Jason commented that 67% of the students in Eagle Nest are on the free or reduced lunch program. The principal, Mr. Mills, is very supportive of the proposal and his school has one of the top performing programs in the state.
An expected program budget was presented not to exceed $10,000. A grant in the amount of $10,000 has been obtained and ECTU is being asked to become the fiscal agent for administration of the funds. If proven to be a success the funding could continue on an annual basis and may later expand into a Taos school. FFITC would submit invoices to the treasurer once per semester for compensation of instructors; invoices for equipment will be submitted as needed. It was moved, seconded and unanimously approved that ECTU will provide volunteers as needed, become the fiscal agent for FFITC, set up a separate checking account at People’s Bank for the funds, require two signatures for any checks over $250, and that Paul White, Bill Adkison, Doug Palmer and Marilyn Farrow will have check-signing privileges.
Open questions to be resolved include:
- Who would own any equipment purchased?
- Who will ride herd on the details?
- Are there any liability concerns for the Chapter?
Bill Adkison is waiting on a response from TU National concerning any other possible conflicts of interest, or liability issues. Any such problems will be worked out prior to the start of instruction. The chapter will provide documentation of 501 (3) (c) status and an IRS mandated letter to the donor.
Lanny McDonald reported through President Adkison that his time to commit to chapter communications has become limited due to work commitments. He has received no photos from members as requested at the last meeting, and does not currently have time to write articles for the website or newsletter. Therefore, going forward, whomever is the point person for an activity will be asked to provide a brief write-up and photos of their event for posting on the internet. Nick Streit offered to post such information on Facebook if participants and leaders of activities will send the information to him at www.toasflyshop.com. Also, contact information to individuals will be listed on the website with names and email addresses only no phone numbers. As Lanny requested previously, committee chairs will be asked to provide the contact information that they want on the website (e.g. for individuals looking to volunteer for a particular activity). Bill Adkison will send an email to the chairs requesting same.
Ken Harrold has been working on the winter social with help from Nick Streit and Paul White. The event will take place on February 8 at the Hotel La Fonda from 5 to 8:30. In the conference room a video may be running; instructions on Tankara, Czech nymphing, and other similar topics may be offered. Happy Hour prices will be available on beer with a discounted bar and lunch menu (prices ranging from $10 to $15 – 5 or 6 menu choices to be available). A $5 cover charge is being considered; reduced room rates in the hotel are being explored, as is live entertainment. The Dining Room will be exclusively for the use of ECTU during this event.
ACTION ITEM: Marketing of the Winter Social will include putting “Save the Date” flyers in fly shops ASAP And Getting A Notice In The Taos News “Tempo”.
The ECTU annual banquet will be held May 15 at the Taos Country Club. The planning committee includes Bill A, Bill Owens, Paul White and Doug Palmer and a contract has been signed. The cost per person to attend will be the same as last year; the meal a Mexican buffet. The Club is waiving a variety of charges as Bill Adkison is a member. All members and friends should be soliciting donations for the auction; those with ECTU business cards should be introducing themselves when they patronize local businesses, leave their ECTU card, and inform the merchant they will be asking for a donation later. Traditionally “experiences” have sold better than tangible items.
ACTION ITEM: A marketing piece is needed describing the ECTU projects completed and under way.
A request for financial support of handicap access in the Red River project was discussed. ADA wheelchair access proposed at a cost of $21,060 has not been funded. This project would create no improvement of the stream habitat and was not seen as important for Project Healing Waters. ECTU has the Hondo and other projects to which they have committed support; there could be funds from the access stamp revenue and lodgers tax to fund this segment of the Red River initiative.
Construction on the Red River project below Eagle Rock Lake and the hatchery is now scheduled to commence in February 2015 and run through April 1. ECTU would be willing to help provide signage and kiosks.
Bill Adkison spoke with Doc Thompson after the last meeting about plans for the 2015 River clean up. Nothing has been planned. Board member Ben Herman has agreed to be the point person for the river cleanup on the Cimarron. He will work with Doc and others to make this a success. They are working on two separate programs. Suggestions to be pursued include asking if Bobby Michaels (Philmont Scout Ranch) might be available for fly tying instruction, asking for troop 98 of Taos to participate, and getting the guides on the East side of Palo Flechado involved. 25 to 30 or so volunteers could handle cleaning the Cimarron at each of the pullouts, perhaps followed with casting instruction for kids/scouts involved.
Robby Henderson discussed his activities on Rio Pueblo and the lack of whirling disease or other problems. Members expressed an interest in learning more about the waters’ needs and what cooperative projects might evolve. ECTU could probably provide volunteers for conservation efforts even though access to the waters may be restricted.
Next Meeting: Board planning meeting (open to interested members as well) February 10, 6:30 pm, Hotel La Fonda Board Room.
The meeting was adjourned with fellowship following in the Mosaic restaurant.