Leo Asuncion welcomes members and takes a roll call.

Board Members present: Leo Asuncion (HI); Steve Couture (NH); Jill Andrews (GA); Kathleen Leyden (ME); Mike Friis (WI); Ronda Wuycheck (MI); Patty Snow (OR)

CSO Members: Hank Burch (AL); Matt Nixon (ME); Edwin Reyes (Guam)

CSO staff present: Bradley Watson; Grant Williams; Norma Longhi; John Ryan-Henry; Mike Molnar; Bridget Cotti-Rausch; Jake Thickman

Approval of minutes from February 14, 2018

Steve Couture moves to approve the February minutes; Jill Andrews seconds the motion; minutes are approved unanimously.

Review of Meeting Agenda, Objectives, Action Items

Mr. Asuncion reviews the Winter Meeting Agenda in detail and reminds members that a separate agenda for the joint meeting with NERRA’s Executive Committee was also included in the meeting materials.

Mr. Asuncion discusses the Blue Economy Whitepaper and shares its main purpose. He asks members to send examples of success stories from the field and adds that there is still a need for a range of different types of stories to help improve CSO’s message for the coastal programs.

Mr. Asuncion provides a brief background on guest speakers and states that the new presentation format will allow for better member interaction with a speaker.

Bradley Watson discusses CSO/NERRA joint meeting agenda and states that the meeting will focus on appropriations outreach and messaging.

Jill Andrews asks for additional information about the re-introduction of CZMA reauthorization bill.

Grant Williams states the bill was introduced to demonstrate congressional support and to refute any efforts to end funding for the CZM and NERRS programs.

Treasurer Report

Mr. Couture reviews the FY17 Profit v. Loss report and states that due to some shortfalls under income the current carry forward from 2017 is now $73,000. As for FY 18, Mr. Couture states that income and expenses are on track. Mr. Couture reviews CSO’s Ameriprise investment account and the SunTrust money market account, and shares that CSO will switch its current money market account to other higher yield accounts in the near future.

Hill Report and Strategy

Mr. Williams discusses the current CSO appropriations strategy and reminds members that this approach was discussed and decided during the last Fall meeting and subsequent calls with members. Mr. Williams talks about the FY 2019 Programmatic Request and explains the report language, where a clear and positive message is used to express the organization’s funding priorities while not being prescriptive about how any additional funding would be spent.

Mr. Williams discusses the FY18 Friends Letter and its importance. Mr. Williams shares that the signatory numbers are lower than expected, and asks members to continue to their efforts on gathering signatures in support of CZM programs.


Mr. Asuncion thanks the Executive Committee and adjourns the meeting at 12:30 pm.  The next EC meeting is scheduled for April 11, 2018.