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Minutes of the Union /Virgil Ditches & East Branch of the Kishwaukee Watershed Steering Committee
October 9, 2013
3 p.m.



Note: These minutes are not official until approved by the Union / Virgil Ditches & East Branch of the Kishwaukee River Watershed Steering Committee at a subsequent meeting. Please refer to the meeting minutes when these minutes are approved to obtain any changes to these minutes.



The Union /Virgil Ditches & East Branch of the Kishwaukee River Watershed Steering Committee (WSC) met on October 9, 2013 at 3:00 p.m. in the DeKalb County Administration Building, in Sycamore, Illinois. In attendance were Committee members Paul Miller, Anita Zurbrugg, Dean Johnson, Karen Miller, and Brian Gregory. Also in attendance were Jim Sparber (Baxter Woodman), Deanna Doohaluk and Jeff Wickenkamp (Hey & Associates), and Rebecca Von Drasek.


1. Roll Call -- Nathan Schwartz, Donna Prain, Roger Steimel, and Jeremy Lin were noted absent.


2. Approval of Agenda -- Ms. Zurbrugg moved to approve the agenda, seconded by Mr. Gregory, and the motion carried unanimously.


3. Approval of Minutes -- Ms. Zurbrugg moved to approve the minutes from September 11, 2013, seconded by Mr. Miller, and the motion carried unanimously.


4. Report of Watershed Tour

Ms. Zurbrugg reported that approximately 35 people attended the watershed tour. She provided the Committee with a summary the tour surveys, filled out by the participants. Ms. Zurbrugg noted that the majority of respondents indicated that they learned something from the tour. She informed the Committee that the costs would be covered as part of the in-kind match for the 319 Grant. Ms. Zurbrugg asked the Committee if the tour should be offered again in the spring.


Mr. Johnson thanked Ms. Zurbrugg for her efforts. He encouraged the continuation of the tours noting the positive response to this type of outreach.


Ms. Doohaluk agreed with the participants' preference to preform an activity at each stop in the tour.


Ms. Zurbrugg noted that future tours might need to be longer and she also felt that the group needed to emphasize the history and objective of the Union/Virgil Ditches & East Branch of the Kishwaukee River Watershed.


The Committee thanked Ms. Zurbrugg, the Community Foundation, and the subcommittee for planning and providing the tour.

5. Review of Final Goals and Objectives

Ms. Doohaluk explained that the draft Goals and Objectives were created for review of the committee.

Ms. Zurbrugg asked if Agreen" infrastructure was included within the language of the goal and objectives section. The Committee briefly discussed the various meanings of "green" infrastructure.


Ms. Doohaluk noted that she correlates Best Management Practices (BMPs) with sustainable or "green" practices.


Mr. Wickenkamp noted that CMAP, Chicago Wilderness, and other planning documents might define the term "green" in a variety of ways. Ms. Miller noted that the Kane County plans also reference "green" infrastructure as both green practices (i.e. rain barrels, gardens, etc), as well as, greenways or open space.


Ms. Zurbrugg suggested that the discussion on how to define "green" infrastructure might be a pertinent discussion for the winter outreach meeting for elected officials. Ms. Zurbrugg asked for Committee Members input and direction.


Mr. Miller asked that the Goals be rewritten as statements of fact. In that way, after efforts are taken to achieve the goals, they can be answered with a "yes" or a "no." Ms. Zurbrugg agreed with Mr. Miller. Ms. Doohaluk agreed to reformat the goal as statements.


The Committee then discussed the outcomes and the realities of completing the projects suggested by the Watershed Plan. Mr. Gregory referenced a proposed dredging project and emphasized the difficulties in completing the project due to State agency oversight. Ms. Doohaluk agreed to acknowledge the importance of the cooperation of the stakeholders and agencies who oversee the projects within the Plan.


Ms. Doohaluk noted that the suggested responses to implement the goals of the watershed plan would include programmatic and project specific suggestions.


6. Report on Modeling

Ms. Doohaluk noted that final tweaks were being done to the models and she informed the Committee that they expected to run the models after finalizing the land use information. The consultants expect to have some results for the Committee by November, 2013.

Ms. Doohaluk noted that Ms. Prain has additional information to provide from the student data collection, as well as, finalizing information about detention basins.


7. Review of Identified Problem Areas -- The Committee reviewed the spreadsheet created by Ms. Doohaluk from the comments received at the workshops. Ms. Doohaluk and Mr. Wickenkamp explained where applicable site specific solutions would be identified to address problems.


Mr. Miller also noted the benefit of identifying site specific problems to continue to encourage compliance.


Mr. Johnson observed that some of the items are not concerns rather than items of interest or best management practices which the workshops attendees were also encouraged to share. These items should be dropped off of the list of problem areas.


Mr. Wickenkamp also noted that when NPDES permits are involved with a specific use the suggestion within the spreadsheet might be to review the permits to confirm an understanding of the standards that an operator is required to meet.


The Committee discussed bridges within the watershed and discussed if those structures were the cause of flooding or simply located within areas prone to flooding. Mr. Wickenkamp agreed to review the specific sites and indicate if a bridge was undersized and would create a blanket statement regarding the need to review of bridges within the watershed.


After a brief discussion the Committee requested that the column heading "Submitted Concern" be re-titled "Submitted Observation." Mr. Johnson noted that be renaming the column Best Management Practices can also be highlighted.

The Committee reviewed the remaining items of the spreadsheet and supported the proposed solutions.


8. Next Meeting -- The Steering Committee will next meet on November 13, 2013 at 3:00 pm in the Conference Room East.

Ms. Doohaluk provided the Committee with a draft Table of Contents and internal Committee concerns to be discussed at the November meeting.

Ms. Zurbrugg also suggested for a future meeting a need for a discussion with how the group will distribute the plan.


9. Adjournment -- Mr. Gregory motioned to adjourn, seconded by Mr. Miller, and the motion carried unanimously.



Respectfully submitted,




Dean Johnson
Chairman, DeKalb County Union Ditch/Virgil Ditch Watershed Steering Committee