July 16, 2003


On Wednesday, July 16, 2003, the NAVSTA Newport Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) gathered at the Oliphant School Administration Building for their monthly meeting. The meeting began at 7:00 p.m. and ended at 8:45 p.m.

In attendance were John Vitkevich, Thomas McGrath, David Brown, Emmet Turley, Thurston Gray, Tom Reardon, Christopher Burnett, Howard Porter, Manuel Marques, Claudette Weissinger, Stephen Parker (TtNUS), Franco LaGreca (EFANE), David Barclift (EFANE), David McConaughy (NEHC), Stacey McFadden (TAG/AICAB), David Dorocz (NAVSTA), Cornelia Mueller (NAVSTA), Kathy Marley (NAVSTA), Gregg Kolhweiss (NAVSTA), Paul Kulpa (RIDEM), Kymberlee Keckler (USEPA), Pamela Harting-Barrat (USEPA), and David Peterson (USEPA).

Mr. David Dorocz opened the meeting and welcomed the group. Mr. David Brown announced that he would be resigning as the Public Information Committee chair to concentrate on his overseas career in international development. Mr. Brown told the group he plans to remain a member of the RAB.


There were no changes to the minutes of the June meeting. Mr. Dorocz asked for a motion to accept the minutes, which was seconded and then carried.


Mr. Stephen Parker began with an overview of the proposed removal action. A copy of the slide show presented during the discussion is included as enclosure (1). Enclosure (2) is the Fact Sheet for OFFTA. The Fact Sheet was presented at the Open House and provides further information on the Navy's proposal.

The remedial investigation for the site has been completed and the soil removal action is being performed to address the contaminants in the soil.

The OFFTA is presently being evaluated to calculate the risk by exposure to contaminants at the site. Mr. Parker stated the contaminants present at the site exceed the residential standards, to allow for an unrestricted use of the property.

Enclosure (2) includes a graphic that shows the various soil depths that exceed the removal action goals for recreational/residential use of the land. The Navy proposes to excavate soil and rubble at different depths up to the high tide line, but not below the top of the bedrock and only minimally below the water table.

The proposed soil removal action will improve the recent conditions at the site and placement of quarried stone along the shoreline will protect the soil from erosion. Mr. Parker stated the rocky shoreline will also provide a natural habitat substrate.

Mr. Emmet Turley asked how much of an increase in traffic is anticipated. Mr. Parker stated there is an approximate estimate of 20 trucks a day for a period of six months.

Ms. Claudette Weissinger asked how many cubic yards of soil would be removed. Mr. Parker stated that the draft feasibility study currently estimates 58,000 cubic yards of soil for removal.

Ms. Weissinger asked if performing the clean up of both the onshore and offshore at the same time would be more economical. Mr. Parker stated the exact cause of the risk associated with the site will continue to be evaluated. He further stated the Navy, EPA, and RIDEM will need to concur on any permanent solution identified in the future.

Ms. Weissinger asked if performing the onshore and offshore clean up at the same time would prevent the movement of the contaminants. Mr. Parker stated that the proposed onshore clean up would be an effective action which would not directly affect the clean up of the offshore area.

Mr. John Vitkevich asked if performing the onshore and offshore clean up at the same time would extend the construction time. Steve Parker stated that with an increase in volume, the construction time frame would need to be extended.

Ms. Stacey McFadden asked what the Navy planned to do with the storm water lines located at the site. Steve Parker stated the storm lines would need to be removed and replaced. Mr. Parker further stated a vortex system has been installed to one of the primary storm line outfalls to reduce the discharge of contaminants.

Ms. McFadden stated that eliminating any potential sources of contamination would be helpful in identifying the source of contamination.

Mr. Thomas McGrath stated it was discussed in a past RAB meeting that last year was very dry and there was not as much parking lot run off. He asked if there was an improvement in the monitoring data. Mr. Parker stated that the data collected last year did show the highest concentration of contamination along the shoreline to be in the outfall area.

Steve Parker told the RAB that the Navy has requested feedback from the RAB and the general public on the proposed removal action. Enclosure (2) includes a comment form. Comments will be accepted until August 15, 2003.


Project Committee - Emmet Turley

Mr. Emmet Turley gave an update to the Providence River and Harbor Dredging Project. Mr. Turley discussed a recent article published by the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council (RICRMC). Enclosure (3) is a Project Committee report with the updated article from RICRMC.

Planning Committee - Thomas McGrath

Mr. Thomas McGrath announced that Mr. Thomas Reardon will also be part of the Planning Committee. Mr. Reardon will act as committee chairman in the event of Mr. McGrath's absence.

Mr. McGrath provided the RAB with a copy of an updated planning schedule for the next six months. Mr. Franco LaGreca proposed changes be made to the planning schedule. Enclosure (4) is a copy of the final planning schedule.

As noted on enclosure (4) there is no schedule for the month of August. Mr. John Vitkevich asked for a motion to cancel the meeting for the month of August, which was seconded and then carried.

Ms. Stacey McFadden was introduced to the RAB. Ms. McFadden from LFR Levine Fricke has been contracted by the Aquidneck Island Citizens Advisory Board to serve as their technical advisor under their Technical Assistance Grants (TAG) Program from EPA.

Ms. Kymberlee Keckler explained to the group that the TAG program is an EPA grant program to provide technical assistance to the communities. Ms. Keckler further stated that TAG members may be invited to do a presentation at an upcoming RAB meeting.

Membership Committee - Thurston Gray

Mr. Gray stated the revised Mission Statement has been changed to include two types of membership: active and inactive. Mr. Gray further stated that six members have been removed from the active status of the mission statement and have been placed into inactive membership.

Mr. Gray announced Ms. Susan Hester has formally submitted her resignation as a member of the RAB. Mr. Gray asked for a motion to accept the resignation, which was seconded and then carried.

Mr. Thurston Gray announced there are presently 12 community members. There were nine community members present at the meeting.

Mr. Vitkevich introduced Mr. Christopher Burnett who was attending the meeting as a prospective new member.

Mr. Gray announced a community based website has recently been established. The Navy has recently purchased the website for the RAB to administer. The new RAB website address is www.rabnewportri.org.


Naval Station Newport hosted an Open House to present plans for removing the soil at the OFFTA located on Coasters Harbor Island. Individuals from the Navy were on hand to answer questions and provide information.

In an effort to inform the general public of the Navy's clean up proposal, the Open House announcement was published three days in the Newport Daily News and the Providence Journal East Bay Edition. The announcement was also published twice in the Sakonnet Times weekly newspaper.

Ms. Cornela Mueller stated a media announcement was made on the local radio station WADK, and on the Rhode Island subsidiaries of ABC, NBC, and CBS television.

Additionally, 750 flyers were sent via mail, and the Providence Journal East Bay Edition did a front-page story on the site, Open House and the soil removal action.


There will be no meeting in the month of August.

The next meeting of the Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) will held on September 17, 2003, at 7:00 p.m. at the Officers' Club.


(1) Soil Removal Action OFFTA - Presentation Slides (3522 KB)
(2) Fact Sheet for the Soil Clean up at OFFTA (653 KB)
(3) Project Committee report dated July 16, 2003 and an RICRMC news article (633 KB)
(4) Planning Committee - six month Planning Schedule (32 KB)