Wallkill River group email No. 1

Friends and Neighbors —

Thank you for attending either our “Future of the Wallkill River” event at SUNY and/or our followup meeting just held a few days ago on June 4th.

We’ll have an actual email list set up soon, but for now I’m just going to email everyone who signed up to keep folks in the loop.

First and foremost, I was asked to email everyone about some fast-approaching Boat Brigades which are launching to monitor the river. You can find more information from the links below (I couldn’t get this out in time for the one today, sorry.)

June 6 from Wallkill

June 27 from New Paltz

July 25 from Rosendale
Until we think of something better, we’ve agreed to organize ourselves into Working Groups. Each WG will meet once a month and once a month we will have a general meeting (I will send out the details for that meeting once they’re set). Each WG will have a leader (we’ll come up with a cool title) who will be responsible to set meetings, organize the work and make sure it gets reported to the general meeting so we’re all always on the same page.

We decided to start with these working groups. PLEASE RESPOND WITH WHICH WORKING GROUPS YOU WANT TO HELP WITH. Sorry for the all-caps – had to make sure that stuck.

a) Boat Brigades (see above). Both Craig Chapman and Brenda Bowers are already taking the lead on this, so we’ll figure out who wants to be the point person.

b) Researching and then educating the group on the issue of getting the Wallkill designated a 303(d) Impaired Waterway. There were tactical pros and cons expressed in the meeting, so we all should get up to speed. Rich Picone is already working on this, and has agreed to take point.

c) Pollution/Stormwater mapping. We had lots of interest in this, so I expect lots of positive responses.

d) Scientific Research. We had several professional scientists in the room, so I’m excited to see what this cadre comes up with to research.

e) public education/outreach. Rich Picone has a blog – www.savethewallkill.org – that he has said we can collectively take over; there are many events to table at, and we should replicate the “Future of the Wallkill” event in other Wallkill Valley communities, starting with Montgomery/Wallkill/Goshen. This group should split into several if we get enough interest.
I am speaking with a few graphic designers I know about getting a logo/identity and website pro bono. I’ll let you know what I find out, but if anyone knows a professional (please only professionals) website designers or graphic designers, let me know.

We need a name. Here are some suggestions. Please let me know if you have other suggestions. Something cool and dramatic.

Wallkill Recovery Project
Foes of Pollution
Walked River Task Force
Walked River Watershed Alliance
Wallkill Watershed Alliance
Wallkill River Alliance
Twischsawkin (apparently the Lenape name for the river)
Friends of the Wallkill (most boring)
Backwards River Cleanupping Brigade

I set up a very simple website… https://sites.google.com/site/futureofthewallkillriver/
…to house PDFs and links to documents about the Wallkill River. The most important thing to start with on the site is the “Wallkill River Watershed Conservation and Management Plan” It’s heavy on Orange County, but it’s the best overall document we have.
Wallkill River Watershed Conservation Plan
I’ll send out another email with the day and time of the next general meeting, and in the meantime will take the names of working group volunteers and help coordinate their first meetings until we designate a leader (speaker?) for each WG. It will be convoluted at first until we get ourselves organized, but please bear with me.

So remember, please respond to this email with:
1) The working groups you want to join
2) Any working groups you’d like to start
3) Suggestions for what to call ourselves.

Jason West

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *