Conservation & Trails Committee


  • 6:30 p.m.
  • 2nd Tuesday of every month
  • Town Offices
    81 Main Street
    Downstairs Conference Room
    Essex Junction, VT 05452
  • From a computer or mobile device, use the meeting link and choose the option for your web browser (Chrome recommended) or the Teams app (download from Microsoft). For general instructions on using Teams, see this document.
  • Call in with a phone to 802-377-3784 and use the conference ID 555 782 384#.
  • Public wifi is available at the Essex municipal offices, libraries, and at hotspots mapped by the VT Public Service Dept.

Agendas & Minutes

Agendas are available prior to the meetings. Minutes are available following approval.

View Most Recent Agendas and Minutes

Join Conservation and Trails Committee Meeting via Microsoft Teams

Videoconference option

Videoconference Opens in new window

Phone / audio-only option

Dial: +1 802-377-3784
Conference ID: 555 782 384#

Committee Members

Alan Botula, Chair
Mike Spaeder, Vice Chair
Arthur Brink
Casey Clark
Lauren Cohen
Betsy Dunn
Shannon Jackson

Darren Schibler, Staff Representative - 802-878-1343,

Mission, Powers, & Duties

The Town of Essex Conservation and Trails Committee is composed of seven residents of the Town who are appointed by the Selectboard for three-year terms. The mission of the committee is to inventory and study the natural, historic, educational, cultural, scientific, architectural, or archaeological resources of the town in which the public has an interest; and to preserve, develop and maintain a multi-use trail, sidewalk, and greenway system in the Town of Essex that will link residential neighborhoods to natural areas, schools, parks, businesses, recreational facilities, community centers, and neighboring towns.

The Committee also advises the Selectboard and Planning Commission on matters relating to the public understanding of local natural resources and conservation needs, development applications and acquisition of lands involving the above resources.

The Committee receives the staff support of the Community Development Department, as well as the Parks and Recreation Department and the Department of Public Works on an as needed and as available basis.

There are seven members of the Conservation and Trails Committee as appointed by the Town of Essex Selectboard to serve at the pleasure of the majority of the Selectboard.

The terms of the Committee members are three years, provided that in creating the first Committee, all members of the existing Conservation Committee and Trails Committee shall be appointed. Through natural attrition of the existing committee members, the number of members of the Conservation and Trails Committee shall be reduced to seven. Future members shall be appointed by the Town of Essex Selectboard to serve at the pleasure of the majority of the Selectboard. If a member has excessive unexcused absences, the Conservation and Trails Committee may, by majority vote, petition the Selectboard to remove that member.

In appointing Committee members, the Selectboard should select members from a cross-section of interests, including land owners, renters, agricultural, recreational, plant and animal resources, historic and education interests, as well as residents of various geographic areas of the Town.

The Committee shall not be a formal party or representative of the municipality at any court, commission, or board hearing without prior approval of the Unified Manager.

At its organization meeting, the Committee shall elect a chairperson, vice-chairperson and secretary and shall adopt such rules as it deems necessary for the performance of its functions. Officers shall be elected annually. The Committee shall keep a record of all transactions and meetings which shall be filed with the Town Clerk as a public record and notice shall be posted in the office of the Town Clerk of the times and places of meetings of the Committee. All meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Vermont’s Open Meeting Law.