RAB MEETING MINUTES
NAVAL STATION (NAVSTA) NEWPORT
CALL TO ORDER
The NAVSTA Newport Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) gathered at the Officers' Club for their monthly meeting on Wednesday, July 20, 2005. The meeting started at 7:00 p.m. and adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
See enclosure (1) for the attendance list.
Mr. Marques opened the meeting and welcomed the group.
APPROVAL OF PREVIOUS MINUTES
The minutes from the March and May meetings were approved.
Mr. Curtis Frye and Ms. Lisa Yeutter of EFA (Engineering Field Activity) Northeast, as well as Mr. Steve Parker of TetraTech NUS, Inc., presented information on the status of Naval Station's Installation Restoration (IR) Program. The presentation is provided as enclosure (2). It presentation included information on each of the 13 IR sites. New information since the last status report presented at the May 2005 meeting included the most recent activities at the McAllister Point Landfill, the NUSC Disposal Area, and Gould Island.
The update for McAllister Point Landfill included a report on the status of the eelgrass restoration efforts and the upcoming eelgrass mitigation project. Recent activities at the Landfill include the annual inspection and monitoring, gas vent monitoring, and survey work. Approximately 0.3 acres of eelgrass was lost during the dredging project. Monitoring completed in 2004 indicated that the eelgrass bed was re-colonizing the dredged area. The Navy intends to finish the work plan to transplant an additional 0.5 acres of eelgrass within this area, likely using the TERFs (Transplanting Eelgrass Remotely with Frame Systems) method, in December of 2005.
Recent activities at the NUSC Disposal Area include removal of drums and paint cans at two locations. The Navy has increased the budget for the project after discovering that the distribution of drums and cans is wider than was expected.
Soil borings, groundwater wells, and test pits were installed on Gould Island to determine if contamination is present in soils and groundwater. Geology at Gould Island includes an extensive till layers and deep bedrock. Drawings discovered recently indicated sewer upgrades, completed in 1959, that required additional investigation.
Agreement With Fishers And Lobstermen For Use Of Coddington Cove - Several community members indicated at the May 2005 meeting that a commercial fisher sets traps in Coddington Cove, possibly within the offshore portion of Derecktor Shipyard. Ms. Mueller reported that Naval Station does have an agreement with the Lobsterman's Association and the Fisherman's Association that allows members of these organizations and the Narragansett Indian Tribe to have access to restricted areas in the vicinity of Naval Station Newport for the purpose of placing and retrieving lobster traps and related fishing equipment. Ms. Mueller will determine if traps and equipment are placed within the footprint of the offshore area of Derecktor Shipyard. If so, Ms. Mueller will discuss appropriate action with her chain of command.
Tank Farm Property Update Excess Navy Property - Several community members expressed concern at the May 2005 meeting over rumors that the Navy intends to excess the tank farm properties. Ms. Mueller verified with her chain of command that there are no plans to excess the tank farm properties at this time.
Species Survey at McAllister Point Landfill - Mr. David Brown would like a species survey of the landfill surface completed.
Budget for Fiscal Year 2006 - Mr. Frye indicated that the IR budget for next year for Naval Station was approximately $2M. He explained that funding for BRAC cleanups would not impact our budget but that two other projects )in New York and Philadelphia) would impact the total budget his command has available for cleanup work.
Golf Course - Ms. Claudette Weissinger asked about the status of the golf course. Ms. Mueller reported that Naval Station is considering several proposals for the Tank Farm property but that no decisions will be made until the BRAC process is complete.
General Progress - Several of the members were concerned that progress appears slow; Ms. Kymberlee Keckler of the US Environmental Protection Agency and Mr. Paul Kulpa of the State Department of Environmental Management both agreed that while most sites are still in investigative phases, work is underway and progress is being made. Ms. Keckler indicated that her priorities are Gould Island, the Old Fire Fighting Training Area, and Derecktor Shipyard. Mr. Kulpa reported that his office was pleased with the removal action work the Navy has undertaken at the Tank Farms.
Boat Tour - Ms. Mueller indicated that, as with other RAB meetings, the boat tour in September is open to the public. However, space is limited to 25 people. Non-RAB members interested in attending the tour should call 841-3538.
Army Corps Update for RI - Updates were available at the meeting and are provided as enclosure (3).
NUSC Disposal Area Soil Removal Action Work Plan - CDs were available for members who are interested in reviewing this work plan.
Meeting Ad for the Newport Daily News - Ms. Mueller will present proposed announcement for member comments at the September meeting. The design is intended to provide an updated look based on comments from Ms. Keckler.
Meetings for FY (Fiscal Year) 2006 - Meeting schedule for the upcoming FY 2006 (that starts in October of 2005) will be discussed at the meeting on October 19.
Mr. Thurston Gray reported that we currently have 12 community members; 10 were present.
Mr. Emmet Turley provide information on the effects of marinas and boating on tidal waterways. The information is provided as enclosure (4).
The next meeting of the RAB will be on September 21, 2005, at 5:00 p.m. The group will meet outside of the Officers' Club.
Enclosures:(1) Attendance List
(2) Program Update
(3) USACE Update of July 2005 for Rhode Island (1,287 Kb)
(4) Report from the Program Committee Chair