The Tama County Conservation Board met in regular session on Wednesday, March 1, 2006, in the Nature Center Library, Otter Creek Park.


Chair Adolphs called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Members present were: Adolphs, Anderson, Benda, Little and Wiese. Also present: Scott Clarke (Clarke Designs), Etzel and Wise.

Minutes from the regular session of February 1, 2006, were read.  Moved by Little, seconded Wiese to approve the minutes as read, carried. (All voting aye)

The following bills were presented:











Amount of Bill

Category Total

0002-6100-113-22-013 Health Ins- Co Share




Health Ins Fund

 Etzel Family for March



0001-6100-260-22 Office Supplies




Staples Credit Plan

#5948631001, #17593, #523313001 misc supplies



0001-6100-412-22 Postage




Etzel, Robert

As per five receipts



0001-6100-414-22 Telephone




Iowa Telecom

17Feb06,  484-5314 (shop)




17Feb06, 484-2231 (office), 484-4157 (payphone)




16Feb06,  484-2231 (office)




19Feb06, 484-4157 (payphone)




16Feb06, 484-5314 (shop)







0001-6100-422-22 School of Instruction




Tama County Nature Center Trust

Registration- Etzel, Wise- Law Enforcement Training



0001-6110-101-22-223 Salary- Main Supervisor




Wise, Craig












0001-6110-101-22-226 Salary- Conservation Tech.




Dolash, Ron












0002-6110-113-22-013 Health Ins- Co Share




Health Ins Fund

Dolash family for March




Wise- Life Insurance for March







0001-6110-254-22-050 Mt Veh- Minor Repair




J&V Auto Parts

#350098 '95 Chev pickup, Reman ST, #350637



Z Line Tire & repair

#1-33299 cross links (10)







0001-6110-292-22-052 Main & Supplies




Fareway Stores

#43 snacks for NC brainstorming meeting (22Feb06)



Kroymann, Robert

ROW payment, period of Jun'04- 14Jun'06



New Century FS, Inc

#547621 4 qts Tordon RTU



Steffeny, Donald

ROW payment, period of Jun'089- 14Jun04



Tama Co. Highway Dept

4-3/4T salt



Tama Co. Solid Waste Disposal Commission

Landfill charges, Jan for OCP



Tama County Treasurer

re-imburse Treas. for bad check- camper



Tama Lawn & Timber

#004473 chains; #1713 repair Jonsered 2065



True Value Hardware

#167090 fasteners (92)



Ultimate Office

#P09013730101011 tier drop 2 wide organizer



Zack's Game Bag

#004603 two name plates for NC (Benda, Bazal)







0001-6110-430-22 LPGas




New Century FS, Inc

2Feb06, #32286 1175 gals LP per contract purchase




 $1.229/gal= $1,444.08




(Shop- 625, Trailer- 225, main residence- 3255)




Prev Bal $2,608.46 - 1,444.08 = $1,164.38 rem balance



0001-6110-431-22 Electricity




Grundy Co REC

OCP thru 2Feb06, 5,040 KWH- meter #1,




4,020 kwh- meter #2 (NC)




Security light charge




maintenance light charge







Total Bills Submitted, General Fund






0001-6120-292-22-072 Rec Supplies




Staples Credit Plan

#5232313001 name badges for Winterfest



Total Bills Submitted, Nature Ctr Trust


Total Bills Submitted



Moved by Anderson, seconded Benda to approve bills, carried. (All voting aye).


Reports and Correspondence. Staff, Work. Wise updated board members on February work including continue brush removal projects, complete tree/shrub trimming at TF Clark Park, deliver trash cans to North Tama and Dysart Elementary, service vehicles, rebuilding purple martin gourd racks for placement at Otter Creek this spring./ Important Dates Etzel relayed several important dates for the month of March/Fun Nite for the Nature Center The event is slated for April 1, auctions items are needed, tickets will be forthcoming in about one week, entertainment has not been tied down yet/Youth Fishing Seminar date of event slated for Tues., 20Jun06/Conservation Brochure Etzel attended at meeting of the Tama County Tourism Brochure Committee on 23feb and will be working with the group on developing the county-wide brochure/Fish Survey results A report on a fish survey conducted at Otter Creek Lake on 24Oct05 was shared with the board. The survey was done by the DNR Fisheries staff out of Lake MacBride Station. Etzel has been unable to make contact with Paul Sleeper, Fisheries Biologist,  regarding his opinion on the survey results.


Scott Clarke, Clarke Design, of Lincoln, NE, spoke to the Board regarding development of displays at the Tama County Nature Center. He gave what could be described as a primer on planning and design of displays, associated fees and cost of display design and fabrication, and services his firm can provide. Board members asked many questions regarding displays for the Nature Center. Clarke estimated that from starting Phase 1 (Proposal Development and Design Contract) through to successfully installing the displays would take nine months to one year if all funding mechanisms are in place, etc..

After Clarke departed, the board discussed design and construction of displays. Anderson pointed out the importance of determining how to pay for this size of project while acknowledging that designs are needed to allow writing of grants for funding support of the fabrication and installation phases of the project. Little and Adolphs spoke to the commitment and promise that has been made to the supporters of the Nature Center to develop the environmental education aspect of the project. They both reiterated that the display component was an important aspect of that promise. Motion by Adolphs, seconded Anderson that Etzel submit a grant application to the Tama County Community Foundation seeking funding to help fund the design phase of the project.

A report was given regarding the meeting at the Nature Center on February 22 to brainstorm ideas to help make the environmental education efforts of the Conservation Board more effective. The group discussed the special events and programming needs but didn’t have time to discuss the display and library component of the environmental education effort. Future meetings will be scheduled to discuss these aspects and start formulating a plan of attack. Etzel did point out that the group discussed the challenges of addressing the needs without a naturalist in the county conservation program. (Find report attached.)

The Board considered two bids received to crop the 18.5 acres at the Reinig Wildlife Refuge and Nature Study Area located in Section 16, Toledo Township. The crop lease will be for the 2006, 2007, and 2008 crop years with a crop rotation of narrow row beans, corn and narrow row beans. Bids received were: Rod Richardson, Tama, of $2,150 per year for a total of $6,450; and Gerald and Bob Husak, both of Toledo, a mixed bid for a total of $7,566.31. After short discussion it was moved by Little, seconded Anderson that the Board enter into a crop lease with Gerald and Robert Husak for a total of $7,566.31, carried. (all voting aye)

Camp fees for 2006 were discussed. The board compared the current camp fee rates with the DNR camp fees. Etzel recommended to the Board to maintain the current camp fee rates as in 2005 with the exception being the rate for the twenty-one day camping coupon book. He recommended that when the board instituted the seven day coupon book in 2005 no one purchased any twenty-one day books. To encourage additional sales of the twenty-one day package it was suggested the Board consider reducing the rate of that package to $12 per night or $252. After short discussion it was moved by Anderson, seconded Benda that the camp fees for 2006 remain the same as 2005 except the twenty-one day camp coupon book price be decreased from $265 ($12.62/night) to $252 ($12/night), carried. (All voting aye)

Discussion centered around Nature Center rental fees. Etzel reviewed with the board current fees and how long they have been in effect. Even though the rental is quite reasonable the board felt that any decision be tabled at this time.

There is a nation-wide effort to re-establish the “Teaming with Wildlife Coalition” which was originally organized in 2000 to secure federal funding for wildlife diversity programs through State DNR or Conservation agencies. That effort was successful in providing over $400 million dollars around the country. The Board discussed endorsing the coalition effort. After discussion it was moved by Anderson, seconded Wiese to endorse the “Teaming with Wildlife Coalition”, carried. (All voting aye)

Etzel presented a Cooperative Agreement- Fish Habitat Stamp Fund between the Iowa DNR and the Tama County Conservation Board for consideration. The agreement pertains to a grant award under Administrative Rule 571, Chapter 35, in the amount of $8,292 to help with shoreline armoring work at Otter Creek Lake. After short discussion it was moved by Benda, seconded Wiese to enter into Fish Habitat Agreement #06-04 as presented and that Etzel can sign the agreement as an agent of the board, carried. (All voting aye)

After discussion of conservation topics of interest it was moved by Anderson, seconded Wiese to adjourn, carried (All voting aye). Adjourned 9:25 p.m.




           ______________________                                               ______________________

                         CHAIR                                                                            VICE-CHAIR



A report presented at the 1Mar06 regular board meeting:

22Feb06, 7 p.m., Tama County Nature Center

Meeting to brainstorm ideas for environmental education efforts of NC and TCCB


Those present:  John Adams (Toledo), Kay Lowry (Gladbrook), Nathan Wrage (Gladbrook), Jeff Shaw (Toledo), Mark McFate (Tama), Ginny Elliott (Tama), Karen Etzel (Toledo), Craig Wise (Chelsea), and Bob Etzel (Toledo). Note: Cathy Wieck (Dysart) had auto accident enroute to meeting (hit deer)....unable to attend


Adult education

-          Provider programming through IVCE (classes, programs)

-          Basketmaking, woodcarving, chainsaw operation

-          Host workshops such as Fish Iowa, Boating Safety, Ice fishing, Outdoor cooking, fishing tips, geocaching.etc.

-          Storm spotter training

-          Elder hostel events

-          Promote fishing activities for Seniors

-          Institute programs like Polk County OWLS (Older, Wiser, Livelier Seniors)

-          Chris Bair- History of the Land workshop

-          Establish an adult environmental education club or society- Where for an annual fee you can attend various programs offered throughout the year


Family Programming

-          Chad Pregracke, Mississippi River cleanup

-          Saturday Family activities- one/month

-          Campfire programs

-          Promote wellness activities

-          Indian culture programming- Jonathan Buffalo, Chris Atkins, Univ of Iowa

-          Plant ID Hike

-          Star watching event

-          Geo-caching workshop and scavenger hunt

-          Issue based programming- global warming, recycling, etc.

-          Geology/Geography of Tama County (possibly bus tour)

-          Programs based on use of natural resources (willow furniture making, wood working, basket making, maple syrup)


Youth Programming

-          Become more involved in Hunter Safety

-          Archaeology program at NC for kids in fall (in conjunction with Iowa Archaeology Month)

-          Youth Overnight Environmental Education Camp (Three days, two nights)

-          Continue current efforts.... utilize Y Camp staff for special invitation programs

-          For youth (school groups)

o      Discipline specific programming (math, language arts, history, writing workshop)

o      Or integrated discipline (multi) programming


Special Events

-          County- wide Natural Resource bus tour

-          Holiday or seasonal activities- maple syrup making, Halloween hike, hay rack ride/guided tour

-          human powered watercraft day

-          fall festival

-          kayak rodeo

-          archery shoot (fun or competition)

-          field trial/Search & Rescue demonstrations (dogs)

-          triathlon

-          x-country run

-          adventure race

-          bicycle race

-          Host Wild Fair BBQ Contest (not only game but wild plants- cat-tails, mushrooms, etc.)

-          Archaeology Road Show

-          Possible tie-ins to local festivals- fun runs, etc.


Use of Facilities

-          Utilize different areas of the park for different activities.... bird feeders and bird feeding, bird watching, flower gardens, timber, prairie, etc.

-          Off-site or activities at other county facilities

-          Place target range at Otter Creek Park

-          Provide equipment rental for outdoor activities: skis, snow shoes, fishing poles, kayaks, canoes

-          Develop self-interpretive trails

-          Develop amphitheatre adjacent to NC


Environmental Educator Development

-          Weekend educational retreats for teacher recertifications- Photography, Project Wet or Wild


Providing Environmental education

-          Hire a Naturalist

-          Utilize a naturalist intern

-          Recruit Senior Citizens as volunteers

-          Develop a Volunteer Naturalist Program- tie in to folks with local interests and knowledge (once per month)

-          Volunteer Environmental Education Corps-  Volunteer naturalists that will donate their time to assist in environmental education efforts


Promotion of programs and events

-          Promote teacher in-service use of facility develop brochure to distribute to schools (admin)

-          Promote events through e-newsletter, press releases, etc.

-          Develop outdoor cooking cook book