Abridged Environmental Committee Minutes, October 9

Steve Hirsch presented a proposal to rent a new compactor for the maintenance area. The old rented compactor has needed frequent repairs. The 2019 cost will increase by $120 per month. The proposal to include this additional expense in next year’s budget was approved by the committee.

Steve Hirsch reported that a new Landscaping Contract will be adopted in 2019. SIPOA sent out 6 invitations and received 3 bids. The low bid came from the present company, The Greenery, and was about $10,000 less than the current cost. The Committee approved a 2-year contract with The Greenery with an option to renew for the 3rd year.

Roger Banks has been sporadically receiving wildlife reports through the SIPOA website. There are a total of 8 bobcats on Seabrook Island. This includes 5 adults and 3 kittens. There have been several sightings reported of our 3 Piebald deer and armadillos are now calling Seabrook Island home. Committee members will write a ‘Wild Things’ article to be published in December to explain how to report sightings on the SIPOA page and to encourage residents to use the form. There have been many photos of our wildlife posted on Next Door and these photographers will be encouraged to also send in a sighting form. This reporting form includes an address which will be used when mapping the locations of wildlife.

There is a small tree down on the Hidden Oaks Nature Trail. Steve Hirsch will make sure Maintenance removes the tree from the path.

A review of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) website by Barry Shedrow shows no substantive change in the following projects: (a) Proposed Path Forward for Future Offshore Renewable Energy on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf, (b) Draft Proposed Program for the 2019-2024 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program, and (c) Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for the 2019-2024 Program.  BOEM is presently reviewing nine permit applications to conduct oil and gas exploration-related activities along the Atlantic OCS.

With the help of Jim Jordan, the deer population was surveyed in September, the population seems to be down. Another survey will take place in early November. At that time a decision will be made on how many, if any, deer need to be culled. It was noted that some residents feel the population has grown based on the number seen in their yard and neighborhood. Deer tend to stay in the same area and we are continuously seeing the same small herds.

-Submitted by Lucy Hoover, Environmental Committee Communications