CONNECTICUT HARBOR MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION
BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING
June 19, 2003
Norwalk Maritime Aquarium
President Severance called the meeting to order at
5:30 P.M. following a tour of Norwalk Harbor.
Members present: Joel Severance, Mike Griffin, Bob
Sammis, Mary VonConta, Geoff Steadman, Lou Allyn,
Ross Byrne, Guest John Pinto - Norwalk Harbor
A motion to dispense with reading of the minutes of
the previous meeting was made, seconded and approved
The Treasure’s report was approved unanimously with
no discussion. The Treasurer made a recommendation
to transfer the Commission’s checking account to
Webster Bank. A motion supporting this action was
made, seconded and approved unanimously
Mr. Steadman reported on plans for an Aquaculture
seminar. The topic would be the relationship between
shellfish commission and harbormasters. The proposed
Introduction – Joel
information – Goeff
DEP Bureau of Aquaculture – Lori Romek
DEP – Peter Francis
Corps of Engineers – Cori Rose
Chairman Fairfield Shellfish Commission
Mystic Harbor Commission – Lou Allyn
5. Sum up – questions and issues CHMA needs to
Location: Combine with the Annual Dinner in Branford
Thursday 10/9, 10/16 or 10/23.
Mr. Sammis to arrange a caterer.
President Severance proposed an agenda for the 2003
Seminar regarding harbor security and the
International Port and Security Act.
Opening Remarks and Introduction – Joel
The Law – Why we are here - Ken Pernerewski,
AAG St. of Connecticut
- Gregory Sanders, VIOSOL Enterprises, Inc.
Seaport & Maritime Security risk Assessment –
Caroline Hamilton, President, Risk Watch
Disaster Response, who’s coming and in charge
– Joel Severance
Q & A – Panel
The meeting will be in late July – early August.
Joel will continue with planning and scheduling.
Mr. Al Grunow is resigning as Executive Secretary.
The mailing lists on his computer will be
transferred to Dave Dunavan’s PC. Someone is now
needed to write the newsletter. There was a
discussion as to who might be considered.
[The following minutes begin at 7:00 p.m.]
IV: HARBOR MASTER’S REPORT
Mr. Griffin deferred his report to the later agenda
item concerning Raised Bill 863 under New Business.
V. ASSOCIATES REPORT
Mr. Steadman said the Associate’s principal
activities since the last Board meeting were being
conducted through work on the CI-IMA Dredging Study
and assistance to the Harbor Master Focus Group to
address issues associated with Raised Bill 863. He
said an effort will be made to increase Associate
memberships through publicity for the Annual
Meeting, especially since the CHMA will be including
a new group at this year’s meeting—persons
interested in shellfish management.
Under Sound Utilities:
Mr. Severance noted the Board’s continuing interest
in the issues concerning the planning and placement
of seabed utility lines (electric and gas) in Long
Island Sound. He mentioned the letter previously
sent by the Board to Commissioner of Environmental
Protection Rocque with copies to Attorney General
Blumenthal and others, and the subsequent meeting
(last year) with Board members and the DEP to
discuss the issues. Attorney General Blumenthal
wrote to thank the Board for its interest and
comments. The Board will continue to follow these
important issues, including the unresolved issues
concerning the electric cable in New Haven Harbor.
reported on the status of the CUMA Dredging Study
undertaken by Mr. Steadman and Mr. Roberge including
the key recommendations for State and Federal action
to improve the Federal maintenance dredging procesS.
Mr. Steadman and Mr. Roberge will give a paper on
the CHMA Dredging Study during the National Coastal
Zone Management Conference to be held in Baltimore
during the week of July 14.
Mr. Steadman reported there has been no meeting of
the Dredge Task Force of the Connecticut Maritime
Coalition (CMC) over the past two months, The Task
Force is still trying, with principal assistance
from Congressman Rob Simmons’s office, to present
testimony concerning dredging issues to the Long
Island Sound Congressional Caucus this year. Such a
meeting has yet to be scheduled. Mr. Steadman said
the Board wrote to Connecticut’s Congressional
delegation in February of this year to present our
recommendations for Federal actions to improve the
dredging process and to make known our interest in
discussing those recommendations during an upcoming
meeting of the Long Island Sound Congressional
Caucus as requested by the CMC. We have not yet
received replies to our letters.
Mr. Steadman reported that the Board wrote to
Attorney General Blumenthal in March of this year to
provide information on the Long Island Sound
dredging issues and to suggest State actions to
improve the process. An assistant to the Attorney
General subsequently called Mr. Samis to discuss the
matter in more detail.
Mr. Steadman reported that the Board wrote to
Commissioner of Environmental Protection Rocque in
February to request that he assign a representative
of the Office of Long Island Sound Programs to
actively participate in the study being managed by
the Corps of Engineers to prepare a dredged material
management plan for Bridgeport Harbor. Commissioner
Rocque subsequently did so.
Mr. John Pinto, Chairman of the Norwalk Harbor
Management Commission, reviewed the status of
planning for the maintenance dredging of Norwalk
Harbor and described the delays that have been
VII. NEW BUSINESS
A. Raised Bill 863
Harbor Master Griffin reported on the extent and
status of the Board’s significant efforts regarding
Raised Bill 863 ‘An Act Concerning Boating Safety.”
The stated purpose of Raised Bill No. 863 is to
strengthen the State’s existing Boating Under the
Influence (BUI) laws. The Board, however, has been
very concerned about the potential effect of the
bill on the State’s harbor master program.
Mr. Griffin reported that the legislation as
originally proposed included revisions to Sec.
15-154 of the General Statutes and the Board found
some of those revisions to be objectionable. That
section has long authorized all harbor masters and
deputy harbor masters to enforce provisions of the
State’s safe boating laws. Those laws extend well
beyond the BUI laws and include many provisions
historically and currently enforced by State harbor
masters and deputy harbor masters. Mr. Griffin and
members of the Board met with representatives of the
DEP and DOT and Assistant Attorney General
Pernerewski in New London in March to discuss the
and Board members also met with and otherwise
communicated with a number of State legislators to
discuss the harbor master program and to express
their concerns about the possible effect of Raised
Bill 863 on that program. Specifically, the Board
objects to any amendments to Section 15-154 that
would remove the harbor masters’ existing and
long-standing authorities. Mr. Griffin also wrote to
all of the harbor masters and deputy harbor masters
to inform them of Raised Bill 863 and the proposed
changes to Section 15-154 of the General Statutes,
Raised Bill 863 was recently passed by both the
Connecticut House of Representatives and Senate and
flow awaits the Governor’s signature. The bill that
was passed does not change the harbor masters’
existing authorities other than to make clear that
harbor masters and deputy harbor masters who are not
certified law enforcement officers may not enforce
the BUT laws.
B. Clarification of Harbor
Severance said that during the course of the Board’s
involvement in the matters concerning Raised Bill.
863, the Board has received commitments from
representatives of the DEP and DOT to work
cooperatively with the Board to help clarify the
extent of the harbor masters’ authority under
Section 15-154 and thereby enhance the harbor master
program. Mr. Severance will pursue the arrangements
for working together in this regard.
Mr. Severance said there is an opening on the Board
of Directors and the Board discussed possible
IX. NEXT MEETING
The next meeting will be in Mystic.
The meeting adjourned at 7:35 p.m.
Respectively Submitted By: Louis Allyn and Geoff