The Board of Directors of the McLean County SWCD had their regular meeting on January 6, 2016 at 7:30 a.m. at the USDA Service Center, 402 N. Kays Drive, Normal. The meeting was called to order by Chairman Mikey Kelley. Directors present were Mikel Fonger, Sally Breese, and Bev Miller. District employees present were Jackie Kraft, Ross Fogle and Stephanie Musselman. NRCS employees present were Eric McTaggart and Matt Bell.
~Financials/Minutes: December minutes, Bev motioned, Sally seconded. Motion Carried. Bev made a motion to approve the January financials, Sally seconded. Motion carried. Sally motioned to approve and Stephanie Musselman. Sally made a motion to approve Mike Kelley awarding Jackie Kraft and Stephanie Musselman signature authority. Mikel seconded. Motion carried.
~Bev gave her report as written. AISWCD President, Myron Kirby, met the new IDOA Director, Raymond Poe. Kirby believes he will be a strong supporter of SWCDs. A meeting was held in Chicago mid-December to discuss the budget crisis. Fifteen legislators will not be running for re-election at the November 2016 elections. It will be very important for everyone involved in agriculture to reach out to the new legislators to ensure they realize the importance of agriculture to the Illinois economy.
~Ross gave his RC report as written. Ross’s last day will be January 8, 2016 as he has resigned from his position. He has spent the last few weeks wrapping things up to prepare for his departure. Pheasants Forever is offering an 11% kickback to returning SWCDs for seed sales. McLean County turned down the general CRP signup contribution agreement for this winter. We will be hosting a cover crop field day this spring and will be promoting the pipeline cover crop incentive program. Ross will also be removing his name from the bank accounts.
~Jackie gave her Watershed report as written. The final report for the Lake Bloomington Shoreline Project has been submitted to FOR & US Fish and Wildlife. However, signs still need to be installed which will happen this spring. We did not received the NREC grant but will work with TNC to find other possible funding sources. Still waiting to hear if the IEPA 319 and Fisher & Farmers grants will be awarded. Waiting on the final approval from US Fish and Wildlife before the T-2 site at Evergreen Lake project can begin. Wetland construction has been delayed due to weather and is scheduled to begin this spring.
~Eric McTaggart gave an update on NRCS. There are approximately 90 CSP payments to make before March 1st. Forty two CSP applications went to contract in McLean and Livingston counties and there are 49 applications for FY16 consideration. The first FY16 EQIP ranking cutoff is January 22nd. Planning is taking place on 34 EQIP applications for the Vermillion Headwaters MRBI. There will hopefully be a kickoff meeting in February for the Clinton Lake Watershed MRBI.
~Old Business: N/A
~New Business: The next Board Meeting and Annual Meeting was set for February 10, 2016 at 7:30 a.m. at the USDA Service Center. The meeting concluded at 8:30 a.m.