Water Returning Slowly to Hartley Pond

            When the Hartley Pond flume collapsed last May, there were questions as to whether or not the historic Memorial Day Boat Race could take place. In spite of the pond being completely drained, the race went on as planned. Now months later, repairs to the flume are complete and the pond is slowly filling with water.

            Coming before the Rochester Conservation Commission on August 6 was Jason Zimmer, District Supervisor for the Southeast District/Wildlife District a part of the Massachusetts Division on Fisheries and Wildlife.

            Zimmer briefly stated that since the reconstruction of the flume, which now features locking boards, water has been slowly returning to the pond and that reseeded banks have been stabilized. He also said that in the future, should it be necessary to open the flume, his office needed to be contacted to organize the opening.

            When asked if there were other solutions versus utilizing a flume system for fresh water management, Zimmer responded. “We could allow a natural stream to return, but that would take many years and many permits, and funding to accomplish.”

            In other matters, Brian Grady of G.A.F. Engineering representing Decas Cranberry Corporation discussed a 16-year-old order of conditions and two modifications to those orders that were never carried out. He sought to understand if the commission would favorably view a request for a Certificate of Compliance (CofC). After some discussion, the commissioners were in agreement that he could move forward and request a CofC.

            Michelle Kirby and Andy Hammerman, 80 Snow’s Pond Road, received a negative determination of acceptability for repairs to a quarter mile private roadway to their residence.

            Ralph and Carolyn Perry, 99 Wolf Island Road, represented by Rick Charon, engineer, filed a Request for Determination of Applicability for the installation of a new septic system. The request received a negative decision.

            A Notice of Intent (NOI) filed by James and Sarah Holbrook, 1 Bates Road, asked the commissioners to consider the installation of a new septic system approximately 330-feet from a bordering vegetated area and other areas along the Sippican River. A positive order of conditions was issued.

            Two NOI filings that are entwined will be heard at a future date when it was learned that abutters in other municipalities had not been notified of the hearing.

            Julie Goodwin of Prime Engineering representing SunRaise Investments for properties located at 0 Featherbed Lane and 0 Cushman Road was asked to confirm that abutters in all surrounding towns had received notification for the two Abbreviated Notice Of Resource Area Delineations hearings. Several abutters had not been notified prompting Chairman Mike Conway to ask Goodwin to re-advertise the public hearings and return at a later date. 

            Continuances were sought and granted to REpurpose Properties, for property located at Rounseville Road, continued until September 3, and to SWEB Development for Rochester Farms LLC, 0 Marion Road, continued until August 20. A continuance until September 3 was also granted to Simpson Solar for property located at 102 Quaker Lane.      

            A CofC was issued to Luis Coelho, 1 Ryder Road.

            The next meeting of the Rochester Conservation Commission is scheduled for August 20 at 7:00 pm in the town hall meeting room.

Rochester Conservation Commission

By Marilou Newell

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