Great Lakes Water Quality Board
1.0 Welcome and Introductions
The Board was reminded that the WQB Terms of Reference call for equal U.S. and Canadian board representation, including all states and provinces. There are several U.S. and Canadian openings that need to be filled. On the Canadian side, Paul Glover (Health Canada) resigned and John Carey (Environment Canada) left the WQB to assume his duties as the newly appointed Canadian Co-Chair of the Science Advisory Board. Joel Weiner and the IJC Ottawa Office will identify potential candidates with interests in the Great Lakes from the following Canadian Public Health Agency.
Action Item: IJC Ottawa Office to seek nominations to fill two Canadian Federal WQB vacancies.
A review of US membership followed. Bruce Knight is no longer with NRCS and WIDNR has recommended Russ Rasmussen to replace Todd Ambs. Joe Koncelik has left Ohio EPA and George Elmaraghy is assisting with OH nomination. Gannon is working with the IJC Washington Office on the federal opening; an other NRCS presentation or possibly USFWS person is being considered.
Action Item: Gannon and IJC Washington Office seek nomination to fill one U.S. federal WQB position.
4.0 WQB 2005-2007 Priorities
4.1 Urbanization Multi-Board Priority – Final Report Preparations
It is hoped that the Urbanization Multi-Board report is completed in the June semi-annual meeting. Now is the time for the WQB to add comments and text to address any weaknesses. At the upcoming IJC semi-annual meeting next week in Washington DC, draft recommendations (called "findings" at this point) will be presented by Dr. Heathcote.
Action Item: Members provide comments/recommendations to Gannon on the multi-board "Building Sustainable Cities" draft report to assist the WQB Co-chairs in dialogue with the Commissioners by April 16, 2007.
5.0 IJC Activities Update
5.1 Semi-Annual Meeting-Update – Land and Water Nutrient Workshop
At the IJC semi-annual meeting next week the Co-Chairs of all the Agreement boards will meet for three hours with the Commissioners. On the agenda is an update on previous work, the invasive species issue and 07-09 priorities. The Commission is expected to encourage the boards to work collaboratively on a few priorities in contrast to past years when the boards conducted mostly independent activities.
The main activity of the last cycle (2005-07) has been the urbanization priority and that will be a major part of the presentation. The WQB will focus on the Land and Lake Nutrient Workshop. Draft slides were available for review and comment. It was suggested that the presentation on the workshop be targeted on the Agreement
Action Item: Carey to send slides to Gannon that include implementation goals under the Agreement.
Action Item: Members provide comments to Gannon on draft slide deck of the WQB Co-chairs presentation to the Commissioners by April 16, 2007.
5.3 2007-2009 Priorities – Discussion
IJC staff held a retreat in January to discuss the priorities process. The Commissioners have expressed interest in becoming more involved in the priorities process from the outset. A new process was developed that will allow for more dialogue between the Agreement boards Co-Chairs and the Commissioners. The Commissioners continue to desire the boards to work collaboratively whenever feasible and work on fewer priorities and make certain they are done well.
A list of 27 potential priorities was compiled from all of the boards. The WQB and its secretary contributed items 4-13 on this so-called "long list". Subsequently, the board Co-Chairs held a conference call on April 5th to discuss the list.
Action Item: Members to provide comments and suggestions to assist the WQB Co-chairs with engagement with the Commissioners on the 2007-09 priorities by April 16, 2007.
7.0 Next Meeting
The next WQB meeting is in Chicago on Wednesday, June 6, 1:00 – 5:30 pm in advance of the IJC Biennial Meeting at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
Board members expressed disappointment that they can't get together in a face-to-face meetings on a more regular basis. It was suggested to set up the next face-to-face meeting in early September in advance of the IJC executive meeting when the Commissioners are expected to approve 2007-2009 priorities, workplans and budget.
Action Item: Gannon, Gulezian and VanHavre to identify date and place for the September meeting.