September 19, 2012


The NAVSTA Newport Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) gathered at the Constellation Room in the Officers Club at Naval Station Newport, Newport, RI for their bimonthly meeting on Wednesday, September 19, 2012. The meeting started at 6:40 p.m. See enclosure (1) for the meeting agenda and enclosure (2) for the attendance list.

David Dorocz, the Navy Co-Chair, opened the meeting and welcomed the group.


The meeting minutes from the July 18, 2012 meeting was approved by vote, though it was clarified that such approval is for the version of the minutes with all the attachments provided by D. Dorocz on September 17, 2012.


Steve Parker (Tetra Tech) presented on the Document Review Status (enclosures 3 and 4). This table shows the current progress of each of the draft documents. This table is more detailed than the Site Summary Chart (enclosure 4) which just provides a general overview of site progress. During this discussion, the following clarifications were made:

  • Tank Farm 1 is a part of the BRAC property disposal, there is only one part that is being investigated under CERCLA.
  • Although the NUSC ROD is being signed this month, significant construction must begin within 15 months of the ROD signature date. There is no similar requirement for completion, this depends on the remedy.
  • Regarding Old Fire Fighting Training Area, the parking area construction is on-going as a part of the new fitness center, and although there are “rain gardens” included in the design, that design also allows for overflow runoff to be discharged though storm drains to Coasters Harbor.
  • Regarding Carr Point, although the Action Memorandum for soil removal (described below) does not require EPA signature to implement, the Navy needs this document to memorialize the decision to reduce risk at the site through soil removals.


    Steve Parker (Tetra Tech) presented the Action Memorandum for Soil Removal at the Recreational Vehicle Camping Park portion of MRP Site 1 (Carr Point) (enclosure 5).


    M. Marques asked if the Carr Point project was issued for public bid. M. Montegross stated that it is a “Seed Project” for the EMAC contract. Contractors wishing to be qualified for EMAC provide submittals for evaluation, and the lowest qualified bid is chosen for the work. Once qualified, these contractors will be able to competitively bid for other projects that are issued under this contracting pathway.

    D. Brown asked if these contractors have time to orient themselves to the site and Naval Station. M. Montegross indicated that the projects for EMAC are clearly defined, and as such bids are fixed price, it is on the contractor to make themselves familiar with the work and the site.

    D. Dorocz noted that contrary to the old Foster-Wheeler contract which was a cost-plus contract, these projects are fixed price so the Navy saves a lot of money over time. There are small business requirements (Navy must hire a percentage of small businesses, depending on type of work) but despite that requirement, the bidding entity must perform a certain percentage of the work, so a small business cannot bid the job and pass the work onto a large one.

    M. Marques asked what the volume would be for removal and disposal. S. Parker noted that he was not sure of the exact amounts, and would put that information in the meeting minutes: Based on the Engineering/Evaluation and Cost Analysis (EECA), up to 2,500 cubic yards (in place volume) may be removed, and a similar amount of clean soils will be used for backfill to bring the area back to the current grade.

    M. Montegross clarified that this action memorandum does not get issued for public comment, although the EECA report was available for comment for a 30 day period.

    M. Marques asked where the material would be disposed. S. Parker stated that he was not sure, though it would probably be adequate for landfill daily cover, regardless he would put that information in the meeting minutes: The Action Memorandum does not specify a disposal location, instead allowing a step for the removal contractor to test the soil and develop a waste profile prior to selecting a properly permitted facility that is permitted to accept the material. FIELD WORK UPDATE

    Steve Parker stated that there is no field work planned for several months.


    Membership - Thurston Gray reported that 5 of 16 members were present at the meeting, and noted that 10 members were active. Three members were excused. He introduced Margaret Kirschner as a new member. Ms. Kirschner stated that she is from Newport and she thanked everyone for their continued work on the RAB, she also indicated that she is interested in Navy properties.


    D. Brown called attention to the Agenda Suggestion Sheet (enclosure 6) and asked if the agencies could have a noted place on the agenda to present information and news that might be relevant to the cleanup program. There was no discussion but there was no disagreement on this suggestion.

    D. Dorocz passed on a request from Winoma Johnson to reduce the frequency of the RAB meetings from six annually to four annually, and asked Maritza Montegross to follow up on that.

    M. Montegross stated that the technical team is looking into increasing duration and frequency of their meetings to two days once every six weeks, and if that change was made, those meetings would be held at different locations so as to be fair with travel requirements. If there was a RAB meeting held the same week of every other technical meeting, this would work out to a RAB meeting every three months, or four times per year. Holding a RAB meeting four times a year would provide for more information delivered at each RAB instead of having only a few things on each agenda. She also clarified that the technical meetings are being expanded (in part) so as to allow for a formalized partnering process between the agencies which has proven to streamline the work and improve progress across the program at other Navy and DOD facilities.

    The following questions and comments were posed (this section is summarized for clarity):

  • Would the frequency of the RAB meetings affect the decision making process? - No, progress is dictated by the management and program schedules, and affected by site-specific complications. Decision documents and “proposed plans” are always brought to the public separately as part of public meetings. The RAB receives other information that is compiled into the proposed plans later.
  • Why would the technical meetings not always be held at Newport? - Part of the partnering process is to be more fair with travel requirements. Many meetings are already held by phone, and we have held a couple meetings in Boston and Providence. Currently EPA and RIDEM travel to Newport for the six annual RPM/RAB meetings.
  • Cutting out the information flow to the public is not appropriate only to allow for some people to drive further for technical meetings. It is the job of the RPM to go to meetings, the members of the RAB are volunteers.
  • Is there a regulation that sets this guideline (frequency of RAB meetings). D. Dorocz stated that it is a joint decision: the Navy is a partner in the RAB, and is not above the community. Thus the decision is left to the group. Some RABs only meet once a year.
  • It was stated that the meetings are held every two months now because the Navy did not want to hold them every month. The suggestion to reduce frequency as a 2014 deadline draws close is suspicious and seems like the result of poor planning. As that 2014 deadline draws closer, the Navy should keep the information flowing to the public more frequently, not less.
  • Although it seems that the frequency of meetings is not going to affect speed of remediation (which has to be the primary goal), the frequency of RAB meetings should not be based on the frequency of technical meetings, or a matter of convenience for the Navy.
  • K. Abbass stated that enabling legislation for this program expires in 2014, and looking at the site summary chart, and understanding it has taken over 15 years to get to this point, it is evident that to meet a 2014 deadline you will need to rush a lot of these sites to decision over the next 24 months. She asked how the Navy can justify reducing flow of information to the public given these constraints.
  • M. Montegross and R. Pagtalunan (NAVFAC) both stated that despite former concerns raised about the enabling legislation for CERCLA, the Newport IR projects are funded and planned well past 2014, and they see no indication of loss of funding after 2014. Their milestone for closing out legacy sites by September 2014 is a management goal for their command at NAVFAC, but other sites identified recently will continue well past that year. These are all indications that funding for the program as a whole will continue as needed.

    D. Brown reminded everyone of the ground rules for the RAB, and D. Dorocz summarized by stating that the back and forth was informative and comments made would be taken into consideration.


    M. Kirschner requested a presentation of the program budget and milestones at the next meeting. The Navy agreed to provide this information.


    The next meeting of the RAB will be held on November 28, 2012 at 6:30 PM at the Officers Club at Naval Station Newport.

    Meeting adjourned at 8:10.

    D. D. Dorocz

    (1) Agenda (22 Kb)
    (2) Attendance List (42 Kb)
    (3) Document Review Status (40 Kb)
    (4) Site Summary Chart (68 Kb)
    (5) Presentation on Action Memorandum For Soil Removal Action, MRP Site 1- Carr Point (843 Kb)
    (6) Agenda Sheet Suggestion from Dave Brown (16 Kb)
    (7) RI Arsenic Standards Weakened For Development (provided by D. Brown, not discussed) (37 Kb)

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