MAY 17, 2006 MEETING


The NAVSTA Newport Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) gathered at the Officers' Club for their monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 17, 2006. The meeting started at 7:00 p.m. and adjourned at 8:10 p.m.

See enclosure (1) for the attendance list.

Ms. Cornelia Mueller opened the meeting and welcomed the group.


The minutes from the March meeting were not approved. Mr. Emmett Turley did not have an opportunity to review the March minutes. Ms. Cornelia Mueller stated that she would resend the minutes to Mr. Turley and that the approval of the March minutes would be postponed until the July meeting.


Mr. Steve Parker, of Tetra Tech NUS, Inc., presented the program's status report (see enclosure (2)). RIDEM (Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management) concurrence on the schedule for the groundwater monitoring at the Melville North Landfill has not been obtained. The Coddington Cove Rubble Fill Area (CCRFA) is considered a low priority site since contaminant levels are low. An independent team reviewed the Old Fire Fighting Training Area (OFFTA) and made recommendations to excavate soil, complete the feasibility study, and the record of decision. Tank Farms 1, 2, and 3 are still undergoing cleanup work by the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). Once complete, cleanup for CERCLA (Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act) contaminants will be addressed. Upcoming work forecasted for the remainder of this fiscal year includes the eelgrass restoration project at the McAllister Point Landfill, the remedial investigation at the Naval Underwater Systems Center (NUSC) Disposal Area, development of the risk assessments and possibly feasibility studies for Tank Farms 4 and 5, and completion of the remedial investigation report for Gould Island.


Mr. Chuck Collet, of Tetra Tech EC, Inc., presented the information on the work at the former BLDG 70 cleanup site. The full presentation is included as enclosure (3). A booster pump house, boiler house, and underground storage tanks, once located at the site, have been removed. Limited soil removal was completed in 2000. A sewage pumping station (BLDG 694), constructed in 1972, remains on the southern end of the site. Removal of remaining contaminated soil is nearly complete.


Update to RAB Website - The drawing of the restoration sites on the RAB website has been updated. Mr. Daniel Sullivan suggested that the next update include two additional rows of information to summarize the estimated costs and dates to complete the cleanup at each site. In addition, Mr. Sullivan suggested that we add a financial balance sheet to the website to illustrate annual funding on a site-by-site basis.

Background Soil Investigation Report for the NUSC Disposal Area - CD copies were made available at the meeting. Comments can be submitted to Ms. Cornelia Mueller at cornelia.mueller@navy.mil.

Focused Site Investigation Report for the Surface Warfare Officers School (SWOS) - CD copies were made available at the meeting. Comments can be submitted to Ms. Mueller at cornelia.mueller@navy.mil.

Remedial Investigation for BLDG 32, Gould Island - CD copies were made available at the meeting. Comments can be submitted to Ms. Mueller at cornelia.mueller@navy.mil.

Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project (RIMAP) - Dr. Kathy Abbass provided highlights from the recent presentation to the Honorable Don Carcieri, Governor of the State of Rhode Island, on RIMAP's findings in Narragansett Bay. Dr. Abbass and others of RIMAP discovered four Revolutionary War shipwrecks north of Goat Island, Newport, RI.

Status of Inactive Ships - Mr. Thomas McGrath asked about the status of the inactive ships at Pier 1. Ms. Mueller indicated that, to her knowledge, the retired aircraft carrier, the USS Forrestal, was undergoing cleanup that would allow the Navy to sink the vessel for use as an artificial reef. However, while the cleanup was fully funded, there are currently no plans or funding to actually move the Forrestal from Pier 1. With regards to the retired USS Saratoga, efforts are underway, by the Saratoga Museum Foundation, Inc., to raise money to move the vessel to Quonset on the other side of Narragansett Bay. The Navy's NAVSEA Inactive Ship Maintenance Offices (NISMO) recently completed a hydrographic survey of the bay floor under and around the ships.

USS Oriskany - Mr. McGrath provided an article from The News-Press of Southwest Florida on the USS Oriskany. It is provided as enclosure (4). The retired aircraft carrier was sunk in the Gulf of Mexico off Pensacola's coast to serve as an artificial reef and dive site.


Oral History - Dr. Kathy Abbass indicated that she intended to proceed with the oral history project discussed at the March meeting. Dr. Abbass mentioned that she hoped to work with Mr. Leonard Panaggio of The Newport Daily News and with WADK radio as part of her effort to contact former military and civilian employees of Naval Station Newport. As discussed at the March meeting, Dr. Abbass also intends to prepare materials for posting to the RAB website.

Mr. Emmet Turley reiterated his disapproval of the project. Mr. Turley is concerned that individuals who come forward will be punished or persecuted as whistleblowers for the information they provide.

Presentation to the Portsmouth Rotary - Dr. Abbass and Ms. Cornelia Mueller presented information on the Installation Restoration Program and the Restoration Advisory Board to the Portsmouth Rotary on April 25. Approximately 15 Rotary members were in attendance, as well as Mr. Manual Marques, Jr. and Mr. Thurston Gray.


Membership Committee - Mr. Thurston Gray reported that we currently have 13 community members; 10 were present.

Planning Committee - Mr. Thomas McGrath requested that other members of the RAB join him on the Planning Committee.

Project Committee - Mr. Emmet Turley provided enclosure (5) on dredging.


The next meeting of the RAB will be on July 19, 2006, at 7:00 p.m.


(1) Attendance List
(2) Installation Restoration Program Technical and Financial Update
(3) Cleanup Project at Midway Pier
(4) Article from Mr. Thomas McGrath (80Kb)
(5) Project Committee Report

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