2-14-2011 - Meeting Minutes


Fairfield County Deer Management Alliance

PO Box186

Georgetown, CT  06829



WiltonTown Hall

Meeting February 14, 2011


The meeting was called to order by Chairman Streit at 10:10 a.m.


The following board members were in attendance:

David Streit Redding – Chairman

Russ Cornelius Brookfield

Kent Haydock Darien

Colin Kelly  Westport

Paul Larson Norwalk

Erin McKenna Stamford

Ray Sementini Ridgefield

Pat Sesto  Wilton - Treasurer

Dave Shugarts Newtown



I.          Approval of Minutes

On motion duly made and seconded, the minutes of the 12/13/2010 meeting, having been circulated, were approved.


II.         Welcome and Introduction

Chairman David Streit opened the meeting by welcoming those present.


III.        Treasurer’s Report

Treasurer Pat Sesto stated that from now on, she would not review regular expenses with the membership like the annual charges for the website and P.O. box.  Rather, we will only discuss special expenditures.  Chairman Streit proposed that the Alliance offer Bob Moran $300 for producing the video of the FCDMA meeting with CT DEP staff on 10/20/10, and all agreed.  He also showed us a new Alliance banner with our mission statement and logo to be used at special events, and all approved the cost of $130.  Before having the business cards produced, Chairman Streit suggested that each Alliance member have their own card that includes their contact information.  Ray Sementini offered to coordinate this effort, and we all should send our information to him:  raykay36@sbcglobal.com


IV.       Appointments

Chairman Streit described the need for members to take a more active role in doing the necessary administrative work for the group.  Pat Sesto recommended Erin McKenna as Vice Chair.  Her duties will include running the meeting in Chairman Streit’s absence and accompanying him to Hartford periodically.  Peter Knight, although absent, was nominated as secretary by Chairman Streit to record the minutes, answer correspondence sent to the website, and to generally manage information pertaining to the Alliance.


IV.       Town Reports

Brookfield.  Russ Cornelius reported that he is continuing to reach out to the area managers in Brookfield and Danbury to educate them about deer management.  By the end of 2010, 111 deer had been culled in the Brookfield archery program, with probably 7-10 more by the end of the season.


Newtown.   Dave Shugarts reported that their Tick Borne Action Committee report should be complete in another month.


Westport.  Colin Kelly reported that the RTM (Representative Town Meeting) met with the Health District, and the Human Services and Public Safety Departments about responding to the petition that Peter Knight circulated about managing the deer population in the town.  March 3rd it their next meeting, during which they will consider doing a survey among residents about changing the “no hunting” ordinance.  If the RTM has political backing, then they may act. 


Wilton.  Pat Sesto reported on the Wilton program that matches hunters to private property owners.  As of the end of December 2010, they had killed 75 deer.  She intends to do a “post mortem” to determine how many hunters showed up, how well they coordinated with homeowners, etc.


Redding.  David Streitreported that he is continuing to promote public awareness through the Be Safe Redding program, a group of about 150 property owners who would like assistance from hunters to reduce deer.  First Selectman Natalie Ketcham has taken note of the widespread desire for a deer management program, and has declared interest in coordinating with the Redding Land Trust.  In the meanwhile, she has written the CT DEP, which is now evaluating each property to assess area and location.  At the DEP’s suggestion, the Town will send a survey about deer management to each resident, which will necessitate three mailings – the first of which will be sent out on inMarch.  The DEP is hoping for a 75% response rate, which would be extraordinary.  After responses are in, they will create a town plan that they would like to begin implementing this fall. 


David asked that all FCDMA members send a letter to the DEP like the one sent from Redding.  He will send a copy to everyone.


He will be meeting with DEP Colonel of Conservation Police, Kyle Overturf, on Wednesday, February 16th to discuss the following:


  • Extending the firearm season to the entire length of the hunting season;
  • Reconciling all of the firearm laws; and
  • Allowing suppressors, which protect against hearing lossand are allowed in a number of other states.


Stamford Erin McKenna informed the group that Mayor Pavia just appointed former New York Mets manager Bobby Valentine to his cabinet as the City's Director of Public Safety, Health and Welfare in January.  She approached Mr. Valentine to invite his participation in the FCDMA, but he has not yet responded.


Darien.  Kent Haydock introduced Paul Larson from Norwalk and proposed that he be a “member at large,” like Peter Knight.  The group welcomed Paul as a new member.


This has been the 15th year in Darien of a program that matches home owners with hunters.  He noted that there has been a shift in media attitude in lower Fairfield County with the increased involvement of animal rights groups and their supporters.  There were two controlled hunts in 2010.  The town one was aborted because of anti-hunting protests, although it is illegal to disrupt the proceedings as they did.


Ridgefield.  Ray Sementini reported that the Deer Management Implementation Committee met to work towards getting the hunting season extended.  First Selectman Rudy Marconi attended.  According to the Chief of Police, 75 deer have been killed by vehicles in 2010, while 3 or 4 years ago the number was about 200 for the year.  David Streit pointed out, however, that the lower number coincides with high availability of acorns and fewer vehicles on the road.  With regard to deer management, Ridgefield has been most successful town in Fairfield County with a harvest rate of 191 with the use of archery.  By March, they will have determined the number of parcels on which they will be hunting during the next season – probably about 11.


IV.  General discussion

Chairman David Streit reminded the Alliance members that raising public awareness and encouraging politicians to help protect children from getting Lyme disease are both very important.  Once every quarter, our membership should contact all politicians in Zones 11 & 12.  He asked that we all encourage letters to the editor.  It is much more effective if people other than members of the Alliance do this.  He also mentioned www.change.org, which allows one to create a petition, designate recipients, and then an email is sent to the petition target each time someone signs.  This is a tool any of us could use. 


V.  Future meetings and plans

Following is the tentative 2011 schedule:


April 11

June 13

August 8

October 10

December 12


The meeting was adjourned at 11:40 a.m.