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Meeting Minutes March 2, 2021

Lake Zoar Authority

 P.O. Box 931

Southbury, CT 06488

Email: [email protected]

Member Towns


The regular meeting of the Lake Zoar Authority was held Tuesday, March 2, 2021, at 7:00 p.m. at the Newtown Community Center, 8 Simpson St, Newtown, CT 06470.

Commissioners Present:

Gary Fillion, Chairman

Bill May, Treasurer

Lesley Pires, Secretary

Frank Cavallo

Herbert Garber

Mark Saksa

Dick Speer


Ed Kusinski, Vice Chairman

John Downs

Jeff Thomas

Stacey Zimmerman

Gary Fillion, chairman, called the meeting to order at 7:07pm.

Secretary’s Report:

A motion to accept the minutes as read from the January 05, 2021 minutes was made by Bill May, seconded by Dick Speer; the motion was passed unanimously.


Public Comments:

A resident from Newtown inquired about weed treatment plans for the 2021 season. Chairman Gary Fillion explained the LZA is still waiting on further guidance from Northeast Aquatic Research, LLC, but confirmed treatment area number 9 will still be treated near his residence.


Correspondence and News Clippings:




Treasurer’s Report:

Bill May, Treasurer, presented account balances. All bills from 2020 have been paid. All invoices have been sent. Bill presented an annual audit of boat storage expenses, with a cost savings proposal to store the boats at the Lakeside Marina year round, versus transport and storage to Beacon Point Marine during the off season. Bill will request a quote from Lakeside Marina for cost comparison. A motion to accept the Treasurer’s Report was made by Herbert Garber, seconded by Dick Speer; the motion was passed unanimously.




Marine Patrol Report:



Publicity/ Public Awareness:



Water Quality / Grants Report:

Gary Fillion advised that reconstruction of the RochambeauBridge is still continuing, and the Lake Zoar channel may be closed through March.

Dr. George Knoecklein, Limnologist & Certified Lake Manager, of Northeast Aquatic Research, LLC, was unable to attend this meeting to present water quality information. He is rescheduled for the next regular meeting on April 6, 2021 at the Oxford Town Hall. In lieu of presentation, he provided some notes to be presented at the meeting. Dr. Knoecklein’s notes state that chemical weed treatment is not a direct cause of blue-green algae on Lake Zoar. He reports that the blue-green algae is a result of nutrients draining into Lake Zoar from LakeLillinonah and the Pomperaug river, due to fertilization from surrounding farm lands. Dr. Knoecklein monitors Candlewood Lake, Lake Lillinonah, and Lake Zoar through a contract with FristLight, and will be able to report on the health comparisons of all three lakes this year.

Dr. Knoecklein reports findings of invasive water chestnuts plants in Newtown pond, at the intersection of route 302 and route 25, across from Ram’s pasture. The pond drains into a creek, which drains into the Pootatuck river, which then drains into Lake Zoar near the Silver bridge. The primary means of eradicating the water chestnut is manual harvesting, by pulling the plant out by hand to include the root. Public outreach is needed to educate residents and the public to pull the water chestnuts as they see them. The pasture also is a bedding area for a large herd of geese. The geese may pull the plants and drop them into Lake Zoar, further spreading the invasive plant.

FirstLight recently had meetings for the recreation management plan, nuisance species report, and shoreline management plan. Gary will view the recorded Zoom meeting and update commissioners next month.

Boats and Motors Report:

Dick Speer agreed there is a significant cost savings opportunity in contracting with a single vendor to dock and overwinter the patrol boats on one site. Dick proposed he and the treasurer meet with Lakeside Marina to discuss available options.



Frank Cavallo and his partner Barbara reported that the CT DEEP grant application was successfully submitted on February 12, 2021, with a proposal to receive funding in the amount of $20,000 with a 25% LZA matching contribution.

Chairman Gary Fillion presented a new grant opportunity from the Environmental Professionals Organization of Connecticut (EPOC) that is available to the LZA. The applications will be judged based on environmental benefits and restoration efforts. Frank Cavallo agreed to review the opportunity. The application deadline is March 31, 2021.



Unfinished Business:


New Business

A Newtown Commissioner seat is now vacant due to Commissioner Stacey Zimmerman relocating his residence out of town. The vacancy is expected to be filled quickly. There is also an Oxford vacancy.




A motion to adjourn was made by Dick Speer, seconded by Herbert Garber, the motion was passed  unanimously. Gary Fillion adjourned the meeting at 7:38 pm.

Respectfully Submitted,

Lesley Pires, Secretary

The minutes are not considered official until approved at the next regular meeting of the Lake Zoar Authority to be held on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 at 7:00 pm at the Oxford Town Hall.

Click here to download the 03-02-2021 Minutes

Click here to read the proposed agenda for the 04-06-2021 LZA meeting