To promote livable, sustainable communities through partnerships that maintain and enhance the
unique quality of life and environment found in Eastern Connecticut communities.
To promote regional cooperation in economic development and resource conservation to preserve the
unique quality of life that makes Eastern Connecticut a place where people want to live and work.
Landscape Stewardship Goal:
Assist in creating healthy, attractive and ecological landscapes at the regional, municipal and
landowner scale. Ecological landscaping practices can help to conserve water quality and quantity,
provide habitat for birds and other animals, increase porous surfaces for rainwater infiltration, create
functional and attractive landscapes and require fewer fossil fuels and less energy for maintenance.
Objective 1: Educate citizens, town commissions, landscape professionals and others on the
importance of installing ecological landscaping practices.
1. Place information on the ecological landscaping initiative on the RC& D website.
2. Work with the Tolland Agricultural Center (TAC) Grounds Management Committee to obtain
funding for ecological landscaping projects at the TAC.
3. Provide outreach support for ecological landscaping workshops.
Objective 2: Promote the importance of invasive plant control and the importance of encouraging
native plant populations.
1. Partner with CT Invasive Plant Working Group (CIPWG) to co‐sponsor the biennial invasive
plant symposium October 25, 2012.
2. Provide workshop sponsorship.
Objective 3: Help educate the public on home‐scale organic vegetable production and support the
production and donation of organic vegetables to local communities in need.
1. Support organic gardening initiatives in Eastern Connecticut.
Objective 4: Assist with outreach and education pertaining to the distribution of the CT Lakes
Shoreline Protection Manual.
1. Post information on the RC&D website about the new guide.
2. Work with DEEP, UCONN Extension and the CT Federation of Lakes to educate municipalities
and lake shore owners.
Objective 5: Assist in the improvement of impaired waterways in Eastern CT on a project basis.
1. Pursue independently or with partners 319 funding.
Farm to School Goal:
Assist the CT Department of Agriculture Farm‐to‐School Program (FTS) in growing and reenergizing
respect and interest in farming support the resurgence in buying local and the reinvestments of good
fresh food for kids at their schools and to grow and expand the markets for farmers in Connecticut.
Objective 1: Educate citizens, school boards, School Wellness Committees, PTO/PTA’s and farmers
on the CT Farm to School Program.
1. Place Farm to School brochures and program information on the RC&D website.
2. Provide Farm to School Program information to statewide agricultural organizations.
3. Attend state, regional and national meetings concerning Farm to School.
Objective 2: Assist the CT Department of Agriculture Farm to School Program.
1. Post the Farm to School Baseline data
report on the RC&D website.
2. Work with the Governor’s Council on
Agricultural Development to increase
spending on CT grown in schools and
3. Investigate ways to promote CT ground
beef and other proteins for use in CT
schools and institutions.
4. Investigate ways to encourage farmers
to bring more land into farm production.
5. Assist the CT Department of Agriculture, CT Department of Education and
UCONN Extension with nutrition and agriculture education relating to FTS.
To assist the communities of Eastern Connecticut in understanding the challenges and opportunities
with remediating and redeveloping environmentally impacted sites.
Objective 1: Foster intermunicipal brownfields initiatives involving multiple communities.
1. Continue coordination efforts with BANC (Brownfields Alliance of Northeast
Connecticut) to seek joint project funding and promote revitalization of mill properties.
Objective 2: Conduct outreach and education to brownfields property owners and municipalities.
1. Convene one informational workshop on changes to CT regulations on brownfields redevelopment.
2. Assist municipal economic/community development staff with informational mailings to
Support urban forestry initiatives that include community tree inventories, educational programs, rain
water management programs, tree warden programs, and tree plantings.
Objective 1: Promote successful America the Beautiful grant recipient’s projects.
1. Highlight with stories and photos successful projects in Eastern CT on the RC&D
Objective 2: Support and promote the CT Tree Warden’s Association and their training.
1. Provide funding and/or support for scholarships for tree warden certification training
to the CT Tree Warden’s Association for municipalities in Eastern CT.
Objective 3: Educate municipal agencies on the importance of including tree review in the site
review and permitting process as part of any Connecticut land use training program.
1. Partner with UCONN Community and Natural Resource Planning Program to
Incorporate tree review during site reviews and
BMP standards during construction phase of
Objective 4: Promote and support municipal tree planting and inventory
programs and projects.
1. Annually support or fund (1) municipal tree planting project
Objective 5: Support the State Vegetation Management Task Force.
1. Keep track of recommendations as they
2. Help disseminate the recommendations
throughout the Eastern CT RC&D Area.
Sustainable Communities Updates: News & Events
ELA's 19th Annual Conference on Feb. 27 & 28. From healthy soil to happy pollinators, edible gardens to managed meadow, Conference sessions offer the gamut of information for anyone interested in ecological land care. If your paper copy of the brochure has gone missing, you can go directly to the website for the brochure, schedule, and registration.
Task Force Makes Recommendations about Roadside Trees
The State Vegetation Management Task Force has recommended steps the state, municipalities,
utilities, and property owners can take to improve the resiliency of roadside
and forests against future catastrophic weather events while ensuring the reliability of the state's power grid. The Task Force was formed in April in response to Governor
Malloy's Two Storm Panel, which had been convened to study the state's response to Tropical Storm Irene and the October 2011 snowstorm. Members of the Task Force believe that if municipalities and the state increase their investment in roadside forest management over time, Connecticut could reduce economic losses, enhance
public safety, and have healthier trees along its roadsides. DEEP is currently reviewing the final report to decide what recommendations to pursue. The Final Report
including all recommendations, may be found on the Task Force webpage.
2012 CT Farm to School Survey Results
are now available. The Eastern Connecticut RC&D Area and the CT Department of Agriculture Farm to School (FTS) Program Baseline Survey Report 2012 is now available. Three surveys were developed and sent to farmers, school food service directors and wholesalers/distributors to better understand participation and interest in Farm to School and to identify the best opportunities to increase sales of CT Grown products to K-12 schools. The project was funded through a grant from the USDA and the regional group Farm to Institution New England (FINE). Survey Results
2012 Farm to School Tour of Mapleleaf Farm, Hebron, CT
The SNACT (School Nutrition Association of CT) summer conference was held June 28th and 29th in Rocky Hill, CT. Elaine Sych participated as a guest of Jane Slupecki, the CT DoAg Farm to School coordinator on a tour of Mapleleaf Farm owned by Ed Ellis. Mapleleaf Farm is one of 6 dairy farms that make up The Farmers Cow.
Ecological Landscaping Network
The Ecological Landscaping Network has been focusing on the Tolland Agricultural Center (TAC) demonstration site. At TAC, a new committee called the TAC Grounds Management Committee has formed and they coordinate everything that goes on at the TAC grounds. New installations and any proposals for changes to the grounds are presented to this committee for approval.
Vivian Felton from NRCS created a flyer for a recent tree and shrub identification workshop held at TAC. One of the pages listed the practices on the ground and the other page describes the shrub rain garden at the main building. Brochure (pdf)
New projects may include the creation of a website that would help to increase the education value of the existing demonstration sites and place to consolidate historical and current information about TAC. The Tolland Ag Board of Trustees is committed to supporting the development and maintenance of a website.
The ELN did not receive the grant for an ethno-botanical buffer, but they plan on reapplying.
The organic vegetable garden will get a re-design this coming year. The entire TAC parcel is considered a People’s Garden and the produce that was grown was donated to a local food bank. They plan on promoting the People’s Garden Initiative in the coming year through video and the website.