November 2000

Meeting Notes

Friends of Tod Creek Watershed meet the first Wednesday of every second month.
You are welcome to join us.

Mission: To protect and enhance the integrity and biodiversity of the Tod Creek Watershed.

To view notes from previous meetings, use the “Meeting Notes” Archive links on the right panel.



Inaugural Meeting 1 Nov, 2000


Rick Appleby, Ken House, Bernie Bowker,                                 Frances Hunter, Greg Carmichael , Shelagh Levey, ArtDimock ,     Woody Thomson, Leslie Glover,  Rick Todd, MaryHaig-Brown , Dave Wallace, Nairn Hollott ,  Judy Wallace
Regrets: Pat Carfra, Poul Hansen, John Levey, Don Sanford, John and Lois Steeves, and Nicola Wade.

The above residents met at the home of Bernie Bowker and Mary Haig-Brown to discuss the formation of a stewardship group for the Tod Creek/Prospect Lake Watershed, Mary Haig-Brown chaired the meeting and Shelagh Levey recorded the minutes.

1. Announcements
a) State of Tod Creek/Prospect Lake Action Plan. Mary Haig-Brown reported that the plan will be circulated to
Municipal Staff, Council Committees and the Community Association next week. The deadline for comments is Dec.1, 2000. The plan will go to Council for approval in Jan, 2001.
b) Changes in Saanich Municipal Planning Department
Environmental Planner, Adrianne Pollard is taking maternity leave Nov. 30,2000. She will be replaced by Angela Evans who works a three day week. Angela’s position will be filled by another part time person and so the environmental planning department will see a reduction in staff time allocation.
c) Coho Fry Release into Tod Creek at Heal’s Rifle Range.
Meet at Red Barn at 10:00, Friday, Nov.3. Kevin Jancowski of CERCA is in charge.
2. Tasks We Are Interested In Pursuing
a) Water Quality In Prospect Lake
Ken House wondered how many lake residents are concerned by the eutrophication of the lake.  Questions from Rick Appleby led into a discussion about the need for information on the eutrophication of Prospect Lake.
Art Dimock rates information regarding water quality as the top priority. We need to acquire funding, possibly through Habitat Acquisition Trust (HAT) to analyze data already gathered by Art, and held by Rick Nordin who does not have the time to deal with it. Following this report we will know the direction we need to take
and will also ask Saanich Planning Dept. to research alternate septic systems for lake side dwellings.
Rick Todd thinks it is time to revisit the issue of motor boats on the lake – water, air, and noise pollution as well as disturbing migratory ducks.  Woody Thomson pointed out that the pollution is particularly bad because of the complex chemicals added
to oil.
b) Walking and hiking trails
Frances Hunter brought up the importance of asking Saanich to designate historical trails as legal rights of way. It was suggested that Saanich offer tax incentives to property owners willing to allow rights of way through their land.
Greg Carmichael mentioned the new Occupiers Liability Act that exempts owners from being sued by people using their land.
Shelagh Levey suggested a work party to clear the right of way leading down to the lake on Stevens Rd. There is an need to identify trails

c) Education
Shelagh is going to offer local schools a program about birds in the watershed.
The Friends of Tod Creek Watershed could assist elementary school children to build and erect wooden nest boxes for birds and maternity roosting boxes for bats.
The Saanich News and The Prospector could be useful for promoting education, and raising awareness for actions and issues in the watershed.
d) Riparian Zones
Judy Wallace suggested planting alder along riparian zones beside the creeks. Shelagh suggested that we hire a summer co-op student to help raise the awareness of residents living beside riparian zones. The student would take information to the residents and encourage them to restore and/or improve riparian areas. The Friends could assist stream owners with planting and provide information about riparian zones.
e) Tod Creek
Art Dimock wants to know what can be done to improve the quality of the Tod Creek and how to get more water into it. He suggested water storage during the winter months for slow release in the summer.
Woody described the history of a previous plan for a dam on Maltby Lake.  Mary Haig-Brown mentioned that dams are no longer popular as they hold less water than the original
wetlands, and increase air pollution due to the methane gas given off from the surface of large bodies of water.
Art suggested we find out how much water is pumped from the lake and streams. Prospect Lake Golf Course has a water licence for 500 gallons of water a day, but it is likely much more is pumped from the lake in the summer. Maybe they could be encouraged to follow the example of Ardmore Golf Course that doesn’t irrigate or use fertilizer.
f) Ground Water
Leslie Glover said many people do not understand the importance of proper maintenance of wells and yet Saanich has no plans to protect catchment areas around wells. Leslie is willing to conduct a survey to find out what people know about wells. Following this, an information package could be written and distributed.  She will bring a draft questionnaire to the next meeting.
Rick Todd thinks it is important for Saanich Engineering Department to monitor septic systems after installation. He is going to check the draft document of the Water Quality Action Plan to see if this is planned.
3. Name and structure for the group
A variety of names were suggested but it was unanimously agreed that the name should avoid focusing on Prospect Lake and instead encompass a larger area by using the watershed concept. In order to avoid confusion with the Watershed Stewards as organized by HAT, the word ‘stewardship’ could not be used. It was decided to
call the group The Friends of Tod Creek Watershed.
4. Relationship to Community Association, Habitat Acquisition Trust, and other groups.
It was agreed to maintain a loose affiliation with the Community Association. Lacking non profit status at this time,  it is important to remain unofficially associated with HAT in order to obtain funding, as well as support.

Future meetings will probably be held on the first Wednesday of each month. The next meeting will be Wednesday,
December 6, 2000, in the meeting room of the Prospect Lake Community Hall at 7:30 pm. Purpose of the next meeting:
– report back on actions taken since the first meeting and plan future actions
– think about wording for a mission statement


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