Conference call January 27, 2016

Policy Council
Wed, 01/27/2016 - 19:00
  • Roll call and introduction of Moe Lemire, Catskill RTC representative
  • Review of Policy Council procedure, John Magerlein, 5 min
  • Trail Approval Task Force: Review and discuss draft approval process; decide whether ready to send to RTCs, Walt Daniels, 15 min
  • Trails Standards Task Force: Review and discuss draft standard, Walt Daniels, 15 min
  • Trail Policy and TMG Task Force: Progress report, Chris Connolly, 15 min
  • Mountain Bike Task Force: Progress report, Bob Boysen or John Mack, 10 min
  • Other Policy Council items including possible need for other new or revised policies, 10 min

Note: Salley Decker has asked to resign from the Policy Council.

Groups audience: 

Estelle Anderson, Bob Boysen, Chris Connolly, Marty Costello, Walt Daniels, Mary Dooman, Peter Hoh, Moe Lemire, John Mack, John Magerlein, Chris Reyling, Keith Scherer, Fred Stern, Josh Howard Absent: Leigh Draper

Status of Minutes: 

 1.     Introductions:

·       Moe Lemire, Catskill RTC representative introduced as new member of the Policy Council

·       Sally Decker asked to resign from the Policy Council due to limited computer access.

2.     Introduction and review of Policy Council procedure

·       John reminded all of the working procedure – bring drafts back to Policy Council to review and approve a draft before asking RTC’s for their feedback. Staff should review all drafts before documents are shared with the RTCs.

3.     Trail Approval Task Force

·       Walt provided background and walked through the draft Trail Approval Process:

·       We had a longstanding trail approval process. For the most part, approvals wen to the Trail Council, most were approved, except the paperwork

·       Discussion focused around the multiple processes that have been consolidated into one process and form, i.e. splitting segments.

·       Several areas of clarification were identified to be taken off-line by Walt, Josh and the task Force.

·       Next step is for the staff especially the Regional Program Coordinators to review; allow 1-2 weeks review time.

·       If Josh and the Task Force are in agreement, draft can be shared with the RTCs

4.     Trail Standards Task Force

·       Walt provided an overview of the standards work. See presentation slides.

o   Trail Design: The Task Force adopted classifications similar to those of the US Forest Service. Bob Boysen suggested a different approach for rating trails on the basis of their characteristics for a more granular classification, to capture all characteristics of a trail segment.

o   Trail Construction: The Task Force is working on the table of contents.

o   Trail Maintenance: The Task Force needs to address open issues and do minor editing (i.e. replace Trails Council references with RTC).

·       Walt will bring issues and recommendations from this discussion back to the Task Force. The Task Force will attempt to complete a revised trail design standard draft before mid-February. This will be sent to Josh for staff review. If possible, we would like to have the staff input prior to the next Policy Council meeting so we can discuss the draft there and decide whether it should be sent to the RTCs for review.


5.     Trail Policy and TMG Task Force progress report

·       Chris provided a summary of the Task Force status:

o   The Task Force concentrated on what is the current Trails Policy.

o   Taking a first cut, the group went through all sections of the Trails Policy and identified portions that are policies rather than procedures that would go into a Trail Management Guide (TMG). They will delete the section on the old Trails Council.

o   The Task Force has reached basic consensus on items to be in a new Trails Policy and will next work on draft language.

·       Issues:

o   We have a separate mountain bike policy but at the same time Trails Policy section 2.1 discusses trail use, including reference to mountain bikes. Why are there two policies? The Task Force initial thinking is to consolidate the policies.

o   Bob Boysen and John Mack are working on Mountain Bike Policy. They concluded that the policy should be about multi-use for trails. They are consolidating their discussions, currently in emails, into clear draft.

o   Conclusion is that Bob Boysen and John Mack will continue to put together their vision and share with Chris’s group. Chris will talk to Bob and share the new Trail Policy Draft. We will discuss further at the next Policy Council meeting.

o   Indemnity has to have board approval. More and more parks and lawyers present us with indemnity language. We don’t want to allow the language.

6.     Mountain Bike Task Force progress report

·       This was discussed in parallel with the Trail Policy report. See above.

7.     Other Policy Council items including possible need for other new or revised policies

·       We identified a list of policies that we will need to work on; John will create a running list to have as Council members become available to work on them:

o   Advocacy policy – We have a conservation and advocacy policy, but does not say much about advocacy. A goal is to launch an advocacy committee this year.

o   Publications policy – The Publications Committee will create a first draft, but it first needs a charter, which must be approved by the board.

o   Technology/privacy policy – The Technology Committee will provide a framework and a draft. The committee hopes to get to this in the second half of 2016.

8.     Next meeting:

·       March 9, 2016 face-to-face at Headquarters, 6pm-8pm; light meal at 5:30 pm

·       Main agenda items: Trail Standards; Trail Policy