July 2016 Newsletter

We had our usual great turnout at the Annual Meeting Monday night, July 11, 2016. We thanked the retiring members, Hap Storer, Geoff Hotz and Vining Bigelow, for their years of service.
Our recommended slate for a three year term was elected: Bob Dahill, Joe Thomas, Matt Moran and Niall Fergusson.

Immediately after the meeting, as is our usual practice, the Executive Board met to elect the officers for the coming year, Pat Kaplan as President, Robin Sandler as Vice President, Niall Fergusson as Treasurer and Margaret Haering as Clerk.

April 2016 Newsletter

To:  Members of the Pine Orchard Community
From:  Pat Kaplan, President of the Pine Orchard Association

Welcome to spring – hopefully!

Information about the use of golf carts in Pine Orchard was presented to us at a Board Meeting several months ago.  I wanted to wait until closer to
spring to present it to all of you.  Below is the content of an email I received from Lieutenant Hormuth.  I am also attaching Branford golf cart procedures.


Attached you will find the Golf Cart Ordinance.  I have also included the
Connecticut General Statute that includes requirements for golf carts. We
will inspect the golf carts so that they comply with the statute because
the Town Ordinance has not been updated. For the convenience of the
residents, we can make individual appointments once these requirements are 

Connecticut General Statutes 14-300g – Operation of golf carts. Equipment. Insurance – current as of 2014

(a) The traffic authority of any city, town or borough is authorized to permit the operation of golf carts, during daylight hours only, on any street or highway within the limits of, and under the jurisdiction of, such traffic authority, provided: (1) Each such golf cart shall be equipped with an operable horn in accordance with the requirements of subsection (e) of section 14-80; (2) each such golf cart shall be equipped with a flag that is positioned to assist operators of motor vehicles in observing the location and operation of such golf cart; (3) no such authorization shall be granted for operation on any street or highway the posted speed limit of which is more than twenty-five miles per hour; and (4) the operator of any such golf cart shall carry a valid Connecticut motor vehicle operator’s license while operating such golf cart. Any person who operates a golf cart in violation of any provision of this subsection, any insurance requirement established in accordance with subsection (b) of this section, or any other conditions or limitations established by the traffic authority for the operation of golf carts shall have committed an infraction.

(b) The Commissioner of Motor Vehicles may establish, by regulations adopted in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, insurance requirements for the operation of golf carts in accordance with subsection (a) of this section.

Golf Cart Procedure

January 2016 Newsletter

To: Members of the Pine Orchard Community

From: Pat Kaplan President of the POA

Re: Meeting of the Executive Board on January 11, 2016

The board was informed of the Tally Sepot memorial sundial that was placed on the Branford right of way at the end of Spring Rock Road December 21st followed by a lovely dinner at the Pine Orchard Chapel. The friends and neighbors who contributed to the memorial had requested in November that the POA determine the proper procedure to follow to allow the memorial to be placed there. Thanks to Bill Aniskovich, Branford town counsel and Pine Orchard neighbor, the procedure was determined and the permission granted very expeditiously. Thanks also to Bernadette and Greg Stak who were the primary organizers of the collection and the placement.

In reviewing the by-laws, it was found that a typographical error had been made leaving out the words Planning and from the description of the Zoning committee. Therefore, the correct description of that committee is the Planning and Zoning Committee.

Due to family illnesses, the website has not yet been updated and it is still difficult to find things such as the current by-laws, minutes and financials. Hopefully in the next couple of months, Kate Frank, our website consultant, Janet Ryan, our office manager, and Colleen Accunzo, our content manager/board liaison, will have completed their work.

The board discussed the zoning ordinance to specify timing of notice to abutting neighbors. Laura Magaraci, our Zoning Enforcement Officer, and Jon Schlessinger, our Planning and Zoning Committee Chair, will convent a meeting with the ZBA board and bring proposed language to the March meeting.

The Executive Summary on the Beach Access points that was done by Attorney Peter Berdon in 2012 was reviewed and discussed. It was decided to invite Dan Burns, our current Association attorney, to the March meeting to provide us with an update. The Executive Summary is available on the website under the News heading.

Our next meeting is March 7, 2016.

Hope you are all enjoying the arrival of winter!

September 2015 Newsletter

To the Members of the Pine Orchard Community

We had a very productive meeting on September 21st.  The first item of business was to introduce the new members: Colleen Accunzo, Linda Giordano and Robin Sandler.  We next reviewed the minutes of the July 6, 2015 Annual Meeting to make sure that all the issues that had been raised were addressed.  The rebar on the Spring Rock Road beach was removed; the railing leading down to the beach at Crescent Bluff was repaired; the by-laws were amended; an Open House will be planned for the Museum; there was a brief discussion of the fact that neither Branford nor Pine Orchard has “blight” ordinances.

The Committee officers and chairs for the year are:

Pat Kaplan – President
Robin Sandler – Vice-President and Co-Chair of Nominating Committee
Hap Storer – Clerk
Niall Fergusson – Treasurer
Rick Ross – Tax Collector
Susan Davis – By-Laws
Linda Giordano – Co-Chair of Nominating Committee
Vining Bigelow – Shoreline Maintenance
Jon Schlessinger – Zoning
Colleen Acunzo – Public Relations
Geoff Hotz – Municipal Liaison
Seth Chaucer – Building Maintenance

Each of the committees has the ability to have non- board members so if interested in being on any one or more of the committees, please let Janet Ryan, our office manager know, and she will pass your contact information on to the appropriate chair.  Or just contact the chair. The website will have all the up to date contact information.

We discussed and approved updating the website and that process will begin soon.  We also discovered, much to the surprise of most of us, that there are not one but two Facebook pages that are named the Pine Orchard Association.  They are great pages but not anything the Association created or update so we are going to try to figure out how to combine the two and make it an official POA website. If anyone has any information about who set them up please let Janet Ryan know. She will be working with our website designer to try to make it a more official POA FB page.

We reviewed the proposed by-laws and discussed all the suggested changes by community members. There were no substantive changes, just clarification of language, grammar and correction of typos. A redrafting will be sent out by e-mail in the next week or so.

The rest of the details of the meeting will be in the minutes which will be posted on the website as soon as they are completed.

Again, I urge you all to share this newsletter with neighbors and ask folks to send us their e-mail addresses. We still do not have as many as we would like.   And please contact me with any questions, concerns or comments.

Pat Kaplan
203 589-7476