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Beaver Trapping and Bylaw Change on June 21 Special Town Meeting

As a last resort, the Mendon Land Use Committee is seeking to transfer funding from the Mendon Land Bank to fund a beaver trapping project in an effort to stop flooding on Nipmuc Lake. The article is on June 21 Special Town Meeting warrant.

"A beaver dam is blocking the outlet from Nipmuc Lake to Meadow Brook and causing flooding," said Land Use Committee Chair Anne Mazar.

Initially it was hoped the flooding could be resolved with a device that allows water to flow under the beaver dam undetected by the beavers. One is currently installed at Inman Pond and is a long-term solution to flooding issues, explained Mazar.

Unfortunately, concerning the Nipmuc Lake flooding, the device will not work because there is not enough of an elevation drop from the lake to the stream and that's why the trapping was recommended by an expert. The flooding has affected the Town Beach. "We've lost a significant portion of the beach," explained Parks Director Dan Byer.

"This is a last resort option," said Mazar. A number of other communities, including Hopkinton, Upton, and Sutton are allocating thousands of dollars for various beaver control projects, including trapping. A licensed trapper would need to be utilized. Article 13 on the warrant is seeking $3,000 to fund the beaver trapping project.

Another article on the warrant, Article 11, is a bylaw change that if passed will stop the insertion of the town meeting warrants in the Town Crier Newspaper. Chapter II Town Meetings, Section 4 will delete the wording "the copies of all town meeting warrants shall also be delivered by hand or other means to every household." This measure could save the town up to $4,800 annually. Town Clerk Margaret Bonderenko explained the warrants will still be available to residents at the Town Hall, posted at the library and Post Office or the Willowbrook Restaurant.

"The law says it has to be posted in three places," she said. "I also post it on the town Website, which is part of the bylaw already."

And finally, as long as engineering plans are completed in time, the Parks Department is hoping to utilize Community Preservation Act funding in an effort to install a drainage system on Tetreault Field and also renovate the entire Veteran's Park outfield after the drainage system is complete. Article 12 is seeking $25,000 of CPA funding for the project. "The field does not drain well; it's a swamp in the spring, and the existing drainage system that was installed when the field was built in 2001 is not sufficient anymore," Byer has said. As of June 8, Byer said the engineering plans were 75 percent complete and hoped to be finalized soon.

The Special Town Meeting will begin at 7 p.m. at Miscoe Hill School. The complete warrant can be found on the town Web site at www.mendonma.gov.




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