2023 January PCEA-EC Minutes

Minutes: Piscataquis County Extension Association Executive Committee Meeting January 9, 2023, at 3 p.m. by Zoom


Members: Kim, Joe, Rick, and Beth

Staff: Donna, Anette, Laurie and Sheila

  • The meeting was facilitated by Rick as Beth was having internet issues.
  • Sheila took notes and the meeting was recorded.
  • Secretary’s Report, Beth moved to accept both sets of minutes. Joe seconded. Motion passed.
  • Treasurer’s Report, Joe moved and Kim seconded to accept the treasurer’s report as presented. Motion passed.
  • Transactions
  • Cash Flow, Sheila will check to see when her computer will be delivered.

Program Updates from staff:

Laurie Bowen –

Laurie requested help in finding a location for her Cooking for Crowds program in Greenville. The event at Thompson Free Library on microgreens went very well.

November Programming:

○ Cooking for Crowds Training in Greenville November 10th 5-8 pm- canceled due to no enrollment. Working on scheduling one in Greenville

again. Looking for contacts and a location
○ Master Gardener training: 3 enrollees. Zoom meetings with enrollees doing a “tech check” with all enrollees very proficient in zoom and computer technology
○ In-person training with Master Gardener volunteers set for Law Farm on May 13th. Soils and irrigation.
○ Pollinator Review Committee approved 9 more applications for Certified Pollinator-friendly
○ Cooking for Crowds in Washington County as Seacoast Missions

● December Programming:
○ Pollinator certification course online learning underway
○ Thompson Free Library Donna & Laurie Microgreens and new to Maine gardening program with 13 attendees

Donna Coffin –

  1. Past Activities
    a. Maine Beef Producers Association Meeting – Nov. 10 & Dec. 1 (6 & 7 people)
    b. Master Gardener Volunteer Q & A moderator – Nov. 15
    c. Maine Harvest Festival – Nov. 19 and 20, Cross Center in Bangor (240 people)
    d. Pork Quality Assurance – canceled
    e. Piscataquis County Budget Public Hearing – Nov. 28 (30+ people)
    f. Ag Price Reporting Group – Dec. 8 (4 people)
    g. New Garden in Piscataquis County – Dec. 15 (13 people)
  • Staff Activities
    a. Interview Committees for Piscataquis 4-H CEA and Extension
    b. Nov. 1 – 3 All Organization Meeting, Orono
    c. Planning Committee for Ag Price Reporting working group and the Maine New Farmers Program (aka: Equipping Farmers with Practical Skills Grant implementation).
    d. Continue to serve on Maine Farm Resource Network, Home Horticulture and Livestock Program Teams
    e. Submitted data to the Maine Planning and Reporting System including results of the gardening and farming newsletters impact surveys.

Sheila Norman 

  1. The process for filling the 4-H Community Education Assistant position is continuing. As of this writing, applications are being accepted, and screening of those applications will begin on January 3. Four people have expressed interest in the position informally. 
  2. Piscataquis County 4-H has made a commitment to move forward with a pilot program, along with three other counties (Penobscot, Waldo, and Somerset). Headed by Extension workforce development specialist Andrew Hudacs, the counties will offer 4-H clubs focused on maple sugaring. Extension sugaring professional Jason Lilly will provide instruction to all clubs on topics such as tree identification. Bob Moore (from Bob’s Sugar House) has agreed to lead the hands-on portion of the experience. Youth will tap trees offered by the Soil and Water Conservation District at the Law Farm. Bob will teach the youth to gather the sap, boil it, and prepare the syrup for marketing. Please share this information with any youth who might be interested. Contact Anette to register.
  3. 4-H will offer a Choose Health Food Fun and Fitness Special Interest club to 4th graders participating in the 21st Century grant afterschool program at Sedomocha. The first of six lessons will be offered on January 4th

Old Business:


  • Executive Committee Constitution and By-Laws

Rick is reviewing EC policies 

Rick reported that we are not in violation of any by-laws. He would like to point out some issues, such as that we do not have all offices filled. We could look at appointments to committees and

  • the EC terms to serve. We do not have the full 8 to 10 members and we should continue to recruit. There should be an annual planning committee. These by-laws are in effect until there is a vote to make changes. 
  • Beth asked who wrote these by-laws. Walter Boomsma wrote these some time ago. 
  • There was a discussion about changing the wording regarding the number of people on the EC from “shall be” to “recommended” 8-10 members. 
  • To change by-laws the change must be published and voted on at the next meeting.
  • Beth suggested not making changes until the next major policy review.
  • A member really should fill the secretary’s position. 
  • We need to continue to get our name out.

4H CEA Position update

The hiring committee will meet on Friday. Rick is impressed with the quality of the applicants. 

School Garden opportunities

  • Laurie is on the board of the Maine School Garden Network.
  • Mr. Murray has changed positions in the school. The person who is interested in working with us has had a concussion. Laurie would like to expand the program from just second grade to K-2. 
  • Laurie will reach out to the new Master Gardeners to see if they will help. 

Next meeting: The meeting will be by Zoom only on March 13. 

We will be meeting every other month (odd months) in 2023 at 3:00 pm by Zoom.