Ashby Open Space & Recreation Plan
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SECTION 9 - Five Year Action Plan

 

Goals and Objectives - Open Space Committee Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
Educate Residents About the Financial, Ecological and Personal Value of Open Space Preservation
  Establish working relationship with regulatory boards and local land trusts Assemble/create literature about the financial values of open space Assemble/create literature about the advantages of the state Chapter 61 laws and their tax advantages Education about the tax advantages of deed restrictions
Assemble/create literature about the conservation easements - what they are, how they work, why use them Assemble/create literature about land use options and alternatives to sale of land to developers
    Locate and rate scenic views
Protect Natural Resources Through Land Acquisition and Protection
  Maintain an active log of all land under Chapters 61, 61A and 61B and when the plans expire. Work with Conservation Commission and Land Trust to create an informational program for Ashby land owners
Analyze and rate parcels for potential acquisition with emphasis toward providing the selectmen and the townspeople the information they need to make reasoned decisions.
  Assemble/create literature about the financial values of open space Identify lands trusts and other organizations that may be able to help in acquisition of Chapter 61 lands Create literature about Ashby and its character for use in presenting Ashby's applications for financial assistance in acquisition of lands Continue education

 

Goals and Objectives - Open Space Committee Responsibilities for Tasks (continued)
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Protect Natural Resources Through Water Resource Protection
  Identify known or potential aquifer areas
Increase Availability and Variety of Recreation Programs and Facilities For Passive Recreation
  Write, mail, and evaluate survey of Ashby Residents re: recreation and open space progress and priorities

 

 

 

 

 

Goals and Objectives - Board of Selectmen Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
  Protect fields and ensure they are kept open wherever possible. Explore protection of old Lyman and Allen Road fields
Protect Natural Resources Through Land Acquisition and Protection
  Pursue acquisition of Western Middlesex Stock Farm and abutting parcels Work with other boards to assist interested landowners in property protection Support Department of Fisheries and Wildlife to acquire Mt Watatic Support other land acquisition and protection priorities
Educate Residents About the Financial, Ecological and Personal Value of Open Space Preservation.
  Lend expertise to OSR Committee
Protect Natural Resources Through Maintenance and Stewardship of Land
  Establish a fund to support stewardship efforts Encourage increased state maintenance of the three bridges along Valley Road.

 

 

 

 

 

Goals and Objectives - Conservation Commission Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
  Keep rate of growth moderate through land acquisition Establish clear procedures for land acquisitions
Protect fields and ensure they are kept open wherever possible
Protect Natural Resources Through Land Acquisition and Protection
  Develop sources for funding for acquisition Apply for self-help grants Apply for self-help grants Apply for self-help grants Apply for self-help grants Apply for self-help grants
Establish funding for land acquisition from Chapter 61 rollovers Request matching funds from the town for land acquisition Request annual budget for land acquisition Request annual budget for land acquisition Request annual budget for land acquisition
Identify and contact land trusts and other organizations whose purpose is to preserve open space to make them aware of land in town that may meet their criteria Attend Land Trust meetings at NRWA Attend Annual Conference of Mass Coalition of Land Trusts
Assist owners of large parcels to the explore possibilities for limiting development in sensitive areas of their property On going through standard meetings with applicants Identify Chapter 61 owners and create information plan Extend information to other land owners Continue education
Protect Natural Resources Through Water Resource Protection
  Educate residents about the function and maintenance of wells and septic systems Guidelines on the town web page
Consider a wetlands protection bylaw for the town Review reasons for a bylaw - if positive, move to next year's agenda Organize support and submit bylaw on warrant for annual town meeting - 2001
Protect Natural Resources Through Protection of Strategic Habitat
  Inventory Streams in Ashby Willard Brook Trapfall Brook and Locke Brook Pearl Hill Brook and Fallulah Brook Other minor streams Beaver ponds and fire ponds
Institute water testing of all streams Receive training from NRWA Establish stream teams for all major brooks Continue testing Continue testing Continue testing
Identify vernal pools Guidelines for certification on web page Certify 1 pool Certify 1 pool Certify 1 pool Certify 1 pool

 

Goals and Objectives - Conservation Commission Responsibilities for Tasks (continued)
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Protect Natural Resources Through Maintenance and Stewardship of Land
  Acquire lands Establish clear procedure for accepting lands by the town in conjunction with the Conservation Commission
  Establish funding for acquisition from Chapter 61 rollover funds  
Acquire first property Acquire additional properties Acquire additional properties Acquire additional properties Acquire additional properties
Establish Cons Comm subcommittee for trails Cut and maintain trails Cut and maintain trails Cut and maintain trails Cut and maintain trails
Establish Cons Com subcommittee for land stewardship - walking bounds Maintain binder on each property
Establish Cons Comm subcommittee for land maintenance As needed, provide for maintenance - i.e. hay mowing, brush removal, etc.
Increase Availability and Variety of Recreation Programs and Facilities For Passive Recreation
  Develop a trail system that will connect protected parcels Work with state program to identify potential for inter-town trails Identify parcels that will complete trail segments Educate landowners about trail easements Acquire easements Acquire parcels
Collect maps of existing trails in town Create and publish town map of trails in time for national trails day - June 2000  
Investigate the feasibility of using old road right of ways for winter and summer trails Collect maps of existing trails in town Create and publish town map of trails in time for national trails day - June 2000  
Publicize, map and use signs to identify existing trails Create trails subcommittee Establish working relationship with highway department and state park  

 

Goals and Objectives - Conservation Commission Responsibilities for Tasks (continued)
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
  Work with existing organizations to maintain trails and construct new trails Utilize expertise and experience of long time residents, outdoorsmen, and others Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts Work with DEM to cut and maintain trails Work with AMC and Friends of the Wapack
  Improve public access to waterways Encourage Fish and Wildlife to acquire access to Lower Wright’s pond   Establish canoe launch on Souhegan
Regional Integration
  Coordinate with Fisheries and Wildlife and DEM to provide wildlife corridors and contiguous protected parcels Begin to identify Commission as agency to work with Establish credibility through trails work Suggest lands for acquisition
Work with Nashua River and Souhegan River Watershed Associations to improve communication and protect streams in the watershed Establish Commission representatives to attend watershed meetings Attend meetings
    Work on joint projects
Work with Montachusett Regional Planning Commission and abutting towns to coordinate land use and protection Establish Commission representatives to attend greater Gardner Sustainable Growth Committee Work with MRPC to complete mapping for the town  
  Establish Commission contacts in Townsend and Ashburnham  
Work with DEM and other state agencies to provide expertise to assist in achieving goals
Promote inter-town collaboration for trail systems Work with state program to identify potential for inter-town trails Invite adjoining towns to participate in seasonal hikes on Ashby trails Coordinate inter-town hikes with AMC and Friends of the Wapack Trail  

 

 

 

Goals and Objectives - Planning Board Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
    Analyze the impact of existing zoning on rural character. Establish a site plan review district around the Ashby Historic District to maintain the scale and form of the area. Restrict development on steep slopes through a change in zoning bylaws.
  Use more creative approaches to ensure that development occurs in ways compatible with the rural character. Consider creative zoning tools such as reduced frontage, large-acreage lots, open space zoning and others to manage overall development in Town. Investigate and implement scenic roads bylaw to protect the area immediately adjacent to the roadway. Use building envelopes to protect views, areas of significant vegetation, or historic importance
  Keep rate of growth moderate through growth rate controls and land acquisition.
Protect Natural Resources Through Water Resource Protection
  Establish and coordinate policy and the exchange of information between regulatory boards regarding work to be performed in or near wetland buffer districts. Protect identified aquifer areas.
Increase Availability and Variety of Recreation Programs and Facilities for Passive Recreation
  Encourage developers to set aside part of land for parks, playgrounds or open space and to provide easements for trails.
Regional Integration
  Work with Montachusett Regional Planning Commission and abutting towns to coordinate land use and protection
Work with Department of Environmental Management and other state agencies to provide expertise to assist in achieving goals
 
 
 
 

 

Goals and Objectives - Ashby Land Trust Responsibilities for Tasks (Private Organization)
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
  Encourage agriculture by assisting farmers to take advantage of federal and State Department of Agriculture programs that are designed to help maintain family farms.
  Encourage agricultural preservation zoning to allow farmers to preserve prime agricultural land while they continue to get value from their land.
Campaign on the value of wetlands and surface waters.
Protect Natural Resources Through Land Acquisition and Protection
  Assist owners of large parcels to the explore possibilities for limiting development in sensitive areas of their property. Sponsor presentations about the financial values of open space  
  Sponsor presentations about the conservation easements - what they are, how they work, why use them  
Sponsor presentations about the advantages of the state Chapter 61 laws and their tax advantages  
Sponsor presentations about land use options and alternatives to sale of land to developers  
  Develop sources for funding for land protection and acquisition Develop network of land trusts and other organizations with funding opportunities Develop short list of grant opportunities  
Undertake first membership drive  
Protect Natural Resources Through Water Resource Protection
  Assist Open Space Committee in value assessment of lands for Acquisition Protect parcels around Valley Road
Protect Natural Resources Through Maintenance and Stewardship of Land
  Create a set of procedures for ensuring maintenance and stewardship of lands  

 

Goals and Objectives - Parks Department Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Protect Natural Resources Through Maintenance and Stewardship of Land
  Establish a maintenance schedule for existing facilities and a capital plan for increasing facilities as population increases. Renovate Allen Field Refurbish tennis and basketball courts.  
Increase Availability and Variety of Recreation Programs and Facilities for Passive Recreation
  Coordinate recreation programs with the school programs to gain greater synergy. Improve public access to waterways. Add winter sports facilities to existing summer facilities especially low cost facilities such as outdoor ice-skating and cross-country skiing. Acquire flat land for future active recreation needs.

 

 

 

 

 

Goals and Objectives - Historic Commission - Responsibilities for Tasks
    Year 1 Year 2 Year3 Year4 Year5
Preserve Rural Character
  Identify and map the town's historic sites. Consider other historic sites for preservation

Ashby Open Space & Recreation Plan
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