September 27, 2005

Dear Mid-Atlantic Partnership Committee members and alternates,

Please find, enclosed, a copy of the proposed agenda for our upcoming meeting in October 15 th. We hope you’ll be able to attend, since your contributions to the committee will be extremely important in helping to set the course for our group, and for our participation in the newly reorganized Appalachian Trail Conservancy.

We have a lot on the table, and our agenda will try to tackle as much as possible in a one-day format. While we have some specific issues to discuss (three members have submitted suggestions for the agenda), we will also need to address some important organizational aspects of our committee, e.g., the mechanisms for identifying and addressing emergent threats to the trail, our sub-committee structure, our involvement with budget planning for the Mid-Atlantic Region and project prioritization, our protocols for reporting back to our maintaining clubs, our relationship to the new ATC Stewardship Council, etc. Because our agenda is so full, we’ve decided to delay discussions with our Agency partners until our meeting in the spring.

On October 15 th, we plan to use the morning to discuss the regional perspective that we’ll need to develop, as a committee, in order to handle issues and problems that may be larger than those with which we’ve been familiar. The early afternoon will extend that discussion, with explanations of the ATC budget cycle, project planning calendar, assessment data, and the role of the MARPC in coordinating and contributing to these activities. We’ll wrap up the day with a discussion of specific issues that have been identified by Committee members, and with the identification of the specific sub-committees that we feel will be necessary to address those issues and others.

The reorganization of the ATC has set the stage for the vigorous participation of volunteers in the planning and management of the Appalachian Trail at the highest levels. The Regional Partnership Committees are envisioned, in that reorganization, as the essential elements in the communication and partnership of our maintaining clubs, our Agency partners, the ATC Board of Directors and the ATC professional staff. As the Conservancy expands its outreach and conservation missions, our role will likewise expand. We are extremely fortunate that the AT maintaining clubs, in our Mid-Atlantic region, have chosen you to tackle these challenges.

Dinner at the Scott Farm will be provided to anyone who would like to stay and socialize with other RPC members. The Mid-Atlantic trail crew would like to extend an invitation to join them as they work on the Conodoguinet wetlands boardwalk project (a mini-Pochuck using helical piers). Please RSVP.

Thank you for your hard work on behalf of the Appalachian Trail. We look forward to seeing you on the 15 th, and to working with you over the next several years.

Sincerely,

Karen Lutz
ATC Mid-Atlantic Regional Director

Kerry Snow
MARPC, Chair