MINUTES

USDA Service Center

Jefferson City, Missouri

March 12, 2002

 

Present

Eli Mast, President                          

Steve Hopper, Past President

Richard Morgan, Area II                  

Kenny Lovelace, Area III Alt.

Steve Oetting, Area IV                     

Laura McKeever Area V

Kathryn Braden, Area VI                 

Bob Thornsberry, Area VII   

Steve Huber, Area VIII                     

 

David Dix, Treasurer           

Peggy Lemons, Exec. Secretary

Sarah Fast, DNR Soil & Water Program

Bill Wilson, DNR Soil & Water Program

Terry   Cosby, Asst. State Conservationist Bob Miller, MDC

           

                                                           

                                                           

                                                           

President Eli Mast called the meeting to order at 1:00 p.m. Roll call and introductions. A sympathy card to be sent to Bill Hollenbeck’s family was signed by the Board and a thank-you card for the flowers was read.

The minutes from the November 26, 2001 joint meeting with the Commission and MASWD Board Meeting were approved as mailed and published. The motion was made by Steve Hopper, seconded by Richard. Motion carried.

The minutes from the November 28, 2001 reorganization meeting were approved as mailed and published. Motion made by Steve Hopper, seconded by Richard. Motion carried.

David distributed a treasurer report. He stated 101 districts have paid state dues this year. A list of those who have not paid was distributed. The treasurer report covered the current period as well as the year-to-date. A list of contributions to the reception for the 2002 NACD Regional Meeting was distributed. Expenses between board meetings include NACD dues, airplane ticket to Reno for Peggy, Training Conference hotel bill, and the cost for reprinting the Conservation Assistance Guides. A motion was made by Kathryn, seconded by Kenny, to approve these expenses. Motion carried.

Kathryn requested a list of districts that have not paid NACD dues. A motion was made by Kathryn, seconded by Steve Oetting to approve the treasurer report as presented. Motion carried.

Requests for reimbursement of Training Conference registration expenses for those who could not attend have been received. After discussion, a motion was made by Kathryn, seconded by Bob, to stay with current policy of no refunds after the cut-off date. Motion carried.

Eli gave an update on the budget expansion request. A call to Rep. Ransdall’s office indicated the funds have not been put into the budget yet, and he thought the page was closed, but that could not be confirmed. Eli stated he would talk personally with Mr. Ransdall the following morning.

Those who attended the North Central meeting in Chicago reviewed items discussed there. Richard, Eli and Peggy reported the main topic of discussion was the new Farm Bill. The group went through an exercise on how the Conservation Security Program incentives could be figured.

The NACD National Meeting in Reno was also reviewed. Again, the main topic of discussion was the Farm Bill. The NACD Board approved a dues increase of $25 with the request to consider a 4% yearly increase be put in place. Several states had major concerns about an open-ended 4% yearly increase, they stated maybe for a couple of years, but not year after year.

A comparison chart that shows the House and Senate versions of the Farm Bill and the differences between them was distributed. Terry Cosby expressed that everyone can guess how these Farm Bill programs would affect him or her; however, no one knows exactly what will finally be passed.

Information on the NACD North Central Regional Meeting in Branson was distributed. Registration information is being printed and should be in everyone’s hands in the next couple of weeks. The committee is still planning on an attendance of around 400.

Eli reviewed the travel policy for the Board and the expense reimbursement procedures. He discussed approved expenses and activities for Area Directors. Kathryn requested reimbursement for her expenses to attend Commission meetings representing her Area. After discussion, a motion was made by Richard, seconded by Steve Hopper, that expenses of Area Directors for attending Commission Meetings representing their Area be reimbursed by MASWCD. The vote was 4 to 4, chair declined to vote, motion failed. Voting in favor was Kathryn Braden, Kenny Lovelace, Richard Morgan, and Bob Thornsberry. Voting against was Steve Hopper, Laura McKeever, Steve Huber, and Steve Oetting.

Eli discussed filling the vacancy of 1st Vice-President due to the death of Bill Hollenbeck. Henry Heinze was appointed 1st Vice-President, and Bob Thornsberry appointed 2nd Vice-President until the Board restructuring next November. Steve Huber was appointed to serve as NACD Board alternate until the Board restructuring next November.

 

Eli revisited the issue of Districts’ use of local funds. He reviewed some of the information from the last time this issue was discussed. He stated the issue had resurfaced due to the opportunity for Districts to sponsor scholarships recently. A motion was made by Richard, seconded by Kenny, to pursue this issue again to see if it can be changed and how, whether legislatively or a change of opinion from the Attorney General. Motion carried.

The agenda for Area Meetings was discussed. The Board also discussed locations of the meetings in their respective areas and Bill Wilson indicated he could go ahead and start making arrangements.

The NACD Spring Legislative Meeting will be March 17-20 in Washington, DC. Those attending will be Eli, Peggy, Steve Hopper and Liz Brown. Roger Hansen will be there, as will Jack Walker and Robert Bross of the Watershed Association. Appointments have been scheduled with all but 2 offices currently.

COMMISSION REPORT: Bill Wilson reported that the next Commission meeting is March 26 in Macon. The meeting will be in the morning with a tour of the ethanol plant in the afternoon. On April 19th there will be a soil survey last acre ceremony. This will be a short ceremony, about 30 minutes, and a reception will follow in the Truman Building. The Program Office is now fully staffed with coordinators. Josh Pointer is stationed in Springfield now and Gorman Bennett will be moving there shortly. Lee Ann Bullard is the newest coordinator and has the east-central area. Bill stated they had received 2 bids for the Training Conference, both from the Lake Ozarks area.

MDC REPORT: Bob Miller discussed a video recently completed that is similar to one done through EQIP education funds. Cattlemen, Farm Bureau, MFA, NRCS, and MDC jointly sponsored this video. It is done from a producer viewpoint. The plan is to show it at county meetings of these respective groups. They are in the process of putting the video on a CD for use where video capability is not possibly. It is 12-13 minutes long. He also indicated MDC is working closely with NRCS on the programs in the new Farm Bill and getting prepared to handle the workload.

NRCS REPORT: Terry Cosby reported the new Assistant State Conservationist for Area 3 would be Leslie Michael. She will start on April 7 and is from Illinois. Harold Deckard was selected for the Assistant State Conservationist in Water Resources. Terry stated they are still having some budget problems. They are working on the Farm Bill issues, trying to get prepared. Counties are looking for landowners interested in signing up for the Farm Bill programs so when they can sign up it can be handled quickly. They have added 5 more resource concerns, which make 10 total resource concerns. Applications in these resource concerns will compete independently, not against other resources. They are expecting contracts to be 3-5 year contracts, which will be more appealing to landowners. All funds received from the Farm Bill this year will need to be obligated by the end of September. MDC will be taking technical responsibility for 3 resources – forestry, stream bank problems, and wildlife management. Terry stated they are putting together costs for practices; this information may be used in determining the amount of funds available for third party vendors. They are still looking at how third party vendors can be used by Districts. All third party vendors will need to be certified by NRCS. Terry also stated that at the current time the budget has no funds for the PL 566 Watershed program.

Area Reports: Steve Oetting stated one of his Districts had questioned the limit on grazing system practice. He told them the resolution process was the best way to handle this type of request or concern. There was a question about having hard copies of resolutions before voting on them. The process stated in the by-laws states resolutions from the floor must pass a 2/3 vote before being discussed. If they pass the 2/3 vote, then they can be discussed and brought to a vote.

Committee Reports: Kathryn Braden reported on the Urban Committee. She stated they had developed a mission statement and felt the MASWCD Board should approve this mission statement. Their mission statement is: "To unite urban and rural people in common goals for the benefit of the people concerning land use and conservation of our natural resources". She stated the main focus of the committee has been on farmland preservation alternatives and local election structure. They discussed doing a survey for what Districts are already doing for the urban community. The committee would like MASWCD to approve $500 for the printing and sending of this brochure. A motion was made by Steve Hopper to accept the committee report and commend the committee for their mission statement. This was seconded by Steve Oetting. Motion carried. Another motion was made by Kathryn, seconded by Laura McKeever, to approve $500 for the brochures of the Urban Committee with MASWCD Board approval of the subject matter of the brochure. Motion carried.

Other Business: The agenda for the Education Seminar was reviewed. A summary of the legislative bills in session this year was reviewed. The main focus is the budget expansion.

The next meeting was tentatively set for Saturday, July 6, 2002, 2:00 p.m. in Branson.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

Peggy Lemons, Executive Secretary                    

 

Eli Mast, President