Saturday, February 13, 2016
Public Hearing on Marinwood Plaza Toxic Waste Cleanup
Damon Connolly, Marin County Supervisor, Regional Water Quality Control Board, Geologica and the Clean up Marinwood Plaza Now Oversight Committee.
Held at Mary Silveira Gym, Marinwood, CA 2/10/2016
Editor's Note: this is the unedited version for historical record. It may be hard to watch in some sections because I had to leave my camera position during the citizens presentations. I will edit sections to make it more accessible in the coming days.
Friday, February 12, 2016
BELLING THE CATTHE MICE once called a meeting to decide on a plan to free themselves of their enemy, the Cat. At least they wished to find some way of knowing when she was coming, so they might have time to run away. Indeed, something had to be done, for they lived in such constant fear of her claws that they hardly dared stir f rom their dens by night or day.
Many plans were discussed, but none of there was thought good enough. At last a very young Mouse got up and said:
"I have a plan that seems very simple, but I know it will be successful. All we have to do is to hang a bell about the Cat's neck. When we hear the bell ringing we will know immediately that our enemy is coming."
All the Mice were much surprised that they had not thought of such a plan before. But in the midst of the rejoicing over their good fortune, an old Mouse arose and said:
"I will say that the plan of the young Mouse is very good. But let me ask one question Who will bell the Cat?"
It is one thing to say that something should be done,
but quite a different matter to do it.
Part one of the February 9, 2016 Marinwood CSD meeting discussing the ban of the last remaining "leash optional" section in Marinwood.
Justin Kai, Leah Kleinman-Green, Izabela Perry voted to ban off leash walking. Bill Shea and Jeff Naylor opposed. The crowd was overwhelmingly in support of keeping the sixty year policy.
Pandering to fears is wrong. Jeff Naylor, Marinwood CSD Director and long time residents knows that dogs have been allowed to be walked "leash optional" for all the years he has lived here. Jeff, like so many residents has compassion to those who have been hurt or even intimidated by dogs but understands that our community can easily accommodate all residents . Puppies for Jeff Naylor!
Bill Shea, Marinwood CSD director supports the sixty year tradition of allowing the last "leash optional" portion of the park remain. Over 99% of the community is leash mandatory for people who don't want to be around off leash dogs. Over 36,000 dog walks happen in this area with virtually ZERO incidents. Isolated incidents and hyped fears should not be the basis for policy.
Bill Shea gets it!
Thursday, February 11, 2016
Justin Kai, Marinwood CSD director ignores a roomful of citizens who support keeping the area in Marinwood which has been "leash optional" for dogs for sixty years. He cites fears for safety and legal liability, yet cannot find any supporting statistics to support his claim. The area has an estimated 36,000 dog walks a year but almost ZERO incidents. This is how freedom dies.
Izabela Perry, Marinwood CSD director informs the packed audience of dog owners why she must vote for a ban on the last "leash optional" in Marinwood Park. It is being done for "safety" despite the fact that 36,000 dog walks happen each year with almost ZERO incidents. Fear is not a good basis for making laws.
We do not need to be "saved" from our own park. We want our park back.
Leah Kleinman-Green , Marinwood CSD director expresses her support for the elimination of a "leash optional" area of the park due to her "terror". Listen as she lists her fears of off leash dogs, the danger to the park, the danger to children, danger from strangers and lawyers with lawsuits. This park has been "leash optional" for sixty years with almost ZERO incidents. The room was packed with responsible dog owners who want to maintain their freedom. Justin Kai and Izabela Perry also voted for the ban.
By Stephanie Weldy, Marin Independent Journal
Marinwood community leaders tightened the district’s leash law this week, saying liability concerns inspired the new requirement on multiuse trails.
Marinwood Community Services District directors voted 3-2 Tuesday to extend the leash requirement to multiuse pathways such as the popular Panhandle Trail south of Quietwood Drive, along Miller Creek. Board members Jeff Naylor and William Shea were opposed.
The ordinance can now be enforced by the Marin Humane Society on the Panhandle, the only multiuse trail in the district. Off leash violators are subject to citation and a $76 fine.
Board member Izabela Perry said she understood the ordinance may come as a shock for those who have walked their dogs unleashed for years on the trail, but safety was key in her decision to approve the restriction.
“My decision was influenced mostly by the concern for the safety of our residents and children in the community,” Perry said. “There were reports of adults and dogs being intimidated and attacked. Some of these incidences resulted in the necessity for medical treatment. That’s concerning.”
Perry, along with board member Leah Kleinman-Green and board president Justin Kai said they wanted to insulate the district from lawsuits.
“My decision was based on airing on the side of caution and working toward limiting the district’s liability if instances of any tragic incidents of attack were ever to occur in an area made known to us as having issues,” Kai said. See the full story HERE
Ezra Rapport, Executive Director of the Association of Bay Area Governments speaks to Regional Planning Directors at a special conference held on November 13, 2015. Mr. Rapport urges allegiance to the goals of ABAG and dismisses local politics as a roadblock to their plans to raise taxes.
He even calls the California constitution as "anti-government". Does he even know the purpose of a constitution is to define the limits of government?
Mr. Rapport and his cohorts at MTC believe their mission is to govern us through a technocratic central authority of appointees that is largely insulated from the capricious public. It is the exact philosophy of fascists and socialists.
Regionalism is merely about the consolidation of power and resources in the hands of a few and flies in the face of our U.S. Constitution and Republic. The Constitution recognizes State and Federal power. No where is "Regional Authority" a legitimate form of government except as a tool for local governments to coordinate functions. We live in a dangerous age for democracy. According to Transparent California Ezra Rapport earned $298,388.80 in 2014.
See the full meeting at https://youtu.be/T3RxQUtAwlY
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
This groundwater model shows soil conditions very near the the Toxic Plume.
Note the speed, toxic waste spreads in the layer of the confined aquifer. This is analogous to the Franciscan Plate of the Miller Creek Streambed where the PCE toxic waste has spread.
From the Geologica Remedial Action Plan page 9-10:
2 SURFACE AND SUBSURFACE CONDITIONS
Sections below describe topography and surface water near the Site, soil lithology, groundwater occurrence, and flow conditions.
2.1 TOPOGRAPHY AND SURFACE WATER
The subject property is located in the Gallinas Valley at an elevation of approximately 40 feet above Mean Sea Level (MSL). Surface topography slopes gently to the east. The Site is located approximately 500 feet north of Miller Creek, which flows in a generally easterly direction towards San Francisco Bay. San Francisco Bay is located approximately 2 miles east of the Site.
2.2 SOIL LITHOLOGY
The site and vicinity are underlain by Quaternary Alluvium consisting of unconsolidated deposits of silt, clay, sand and gravel. Franciscan bedrock comprised of sandstone and shale reportedly outcrops in highland areas north, west, and south of the site. Borings have been advanced to maximum depths of 52 feet (ft) below ground surface (bgs) on the property and 78 feet bgs on the Silveira Ranch property to the east across Highway 101. The Site and vicinity are underlain by up to 50 to 60 feet of silt, sand, and gravel deposited by a meandering ancestral Miller Creek over fractured bedrock of the Franciscan Complex. Borings advanced at and near the Site indicate that these stream deposits are variable in texture both laterally and vertically and generally become coarser with depth. Key lithologic boring locations are shown on Figure 2. Schematic subsurface cross sections are presented on Figures 3, 4, and 5. Soils encountered at the Site generally consist of a surficial sandy clay horizon overlying as many as three horizons of clayey sand separated by grading to clayey medium sand as depicted on Cross Section A-A’ (Figure 3A). The upper silt and clay horizon was encountered to depths of approximately 15 to 25 feet bgs. Varying thicknesses of more permeable sand horizons and less permeable silt and clay horizons were encountered below that depth. However, many of the permeable sand layers may have limited lateral continuity.
2.3 GROUNDWATER OCCURRENCE AND FLOW
Groundwater is encountered under semi-confined to unconfined conditions in the uppermost permeable soil horizon beneath the Site; groundwater present in deeper permeable strata appears to be semi-confined or confined by overlying finer-grained strata. As evidence of these conditions, groundwater is typically first encountered at depths of 16 to 20 feet bgs during drilling, and rises following boring completion. Groundwater levels in monitoring wells completed at the Site fluctuate seasonally, ranging from 6 to 12 feet bgs in late winter and several feet lower in late fall (see Figure 6). Generally easterly to southeasterly horizontal groundwater gradients have been identified at the property and off-site on the Silveira Ranch to Remedial Action Plan Page 5 Former Prosperity Cleaners San Rafael, CA the east. Figure 7 presents a groundwater elevation contour map for the most recent quarterly monitoring event, which was conducted in November 2015. Based on off-site investigations, groundwater north and east of Miller Creek was encountered below the upper silt and clay horizon under partially confined conditions. South of Miller Creek on the Silveira property, groundwater was encountered in a shallow sand horizon overlying the upper silt and clay horizon as well as in deeper confined units underlying the upper silt and clay horizon (See Schematic Cross Sections B-B’ and C-C’, Figures 4 and 5). Offsite investigation completed in August/September 2015 estimated groundwater elevation ranging between approximately 18 and 31 feet MSL, which is consistently above the water level in Miller Creek, indicating that the creek gains water from the underlying groundwater-bearing zone as it crosses the Silveira Ranch property.
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Hazard Summary-Created in April 1992; Revised in December 2012
Tetrachloroethylene is widely used for dry-cleaning fabrics and metal degreasing operations. Effects resulting from acute (short term) high-level inhalation exposure of humans to tetrachloroethylene include irritation of the upper respiratory tract and eyes, kidney dysfunction, and neurological effects such as reversible mood and behavioral changes, impairment of coordination, dizziness, headache, sleepiness, and unconsciousness. The primary effects from chronic (long term) inhalation exposure are neurological, including impaired cognitive and motor neurobehavioral performance. Tetrachloroethylene exposure may also cause adverse effects in the kidney, liver, immune system and hematologic system, and on development and reproduction. Studies of people exposed in the workplace have found associations with several types of cancer including bladder cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma. EPA has classified tetrachloroethylene as likely to be carcinogenic to humans.
For a complete report see the EPA Website HERE
|Children are especially vulnerable to health effects of PCE.|
Monday, February 8, 2016
Important Community Event!
Public Hearing on
Marinwood Toxic Waste Cleanup
"Get the facts" with: Damon Connolly, Marin County Supervisor, Regional Water Quality Control Board, Geologica and the Clean up Marinwood Plaza Now Oversight Committee.
Learn: What is PCE, TCE and its dangers ?
What are risks to our community if it goes untreated?
How this will affect my property values and our future?
You'll see the latest test reports, current maps of the toxic plume and other exhibits. Experts available to answer your questions.
Don't Miss it! One Night Only!
Wed. Feb 10th at 7:30 PM.
Mary Silveira School
375 Blackstone Dr.
AS A CATHOLIC SECOND-GRADER, first confession meant entering a small, dark closet- like room and waiting for the priest to hear our sins. Eighth-graders started the rumor that child-eating mummies were hiding in a secret passage behind the wall of the confessionals. Fear and pandemonium ensued, making it almost impossible for the good sisters to control the chaos.
I am reminded of this as I read the blogs, Lucas Valley and Marinwood doorway leaflets and letters to the editor about the horrors that will supposedly befall us if we allow workforce housing into our communities.
According to these literary works, education will deteriorate, property values will crash, high-rise Dubai-style apartment complexes will sprout up in Lucas Valley and thugs will terrorize our neighborhoods.
Misinformation and half-truths are being purported as fact. SPAM email petitions disappear in county SPAM filters and don't allow the opportunity for responses to concerned constituents.
Fear No. 1: Gangs and thugs equate with affordable housing. "Those people" increase crime and don't pay taxes."
Examples of affordable, high-quality, high-density housing exist in our county. Non-profit housing projects which are run by organizations such as EAH and BRIDGE exist in West Marin, Larkspur, Corte Madera, San Rafael and Novato and rent to low-income seniors, child care and home support workers, retailers, teachers, nurses and others making less than $65,000 per year who contribute to the fabric of our communities.
Properties are typically well managed. Anyone can drive down Lucas Valley Road and see what a high-density housing project with a three-year waiting list looks like for low-income seniors at Rotary Village.
The 80 units are clustered, small, one-story and well- maintained with residents engaged in the community.
Fear No. 2: The quality of public school education will deteriorate. There are already too many children and no capacity.
Established in 1864, Dixie is one of the oldest districts in Marin. It started as a small one-room school house serving the local farming and ranching families.
During the development surge of 1955-69, two junior high schools and eight elementary schools peaked at 4,900 students.
The lowest enrollment of 1,000 in 1985-86 left only Miller Creek Middle School, Dixie and Vallecito operational. As older people leave the district and new families arrive, another expansion is underway. In Basic Aid schools, property owners pay taxes regardless of whether they have children in school.
District taxpayers consistently vote for parcel assessments because it's good for our kids and our property values. Those without children in school continue to subsidize the educations of those with children.
While non-profit housing is exempt from ad valorem taxes, they are not exempt from the extra school parcel assessments and taxes.
Fear No. 3: Affordable workforce housing will ruin property values. A derelict strip mall with a toxic plume, drug dealing and vandalism ruins property values.
The Marinwood/Lucas Valley community and the property owner worked together over the past eight years to create a redevelopment concept for the Marinwood Plaza.
There have been many meetings over the years.
The concept of a mixed-use village has been in the works for quite a while and was memorialized at a board meeting about the general plan Sept. 26, 2006, which is archived on the county web for viewing.
Phase 1 brought our wonderful grocery store and farmers market. An eyesore has been transformed, the toxic waste remediated and a vibrancy is returning.
The county website is a great resource.
My door is always open and I welcome the opportunity to discuss your concerns and suggestions. Together, we can work through the challenges.
Susan Adams of Marinwood represents District 1 on the Marin Board of Supervisors. She has served on the county board since 2003.
This piece is breathtakingly deaf to the real concerns of accommodating 71% of all affordable housing for unincorporated Marin in Marinwood-Lucas Valley.
We would rather have productive communication and practical solutions.
P.S. State regulators confirm that the toxic waste spill at Marinwood Plaza is still not fully remediated. Although there is a slow process underway to clean it, the major removal of soil on the property and under the 101 Freeway on ramp has not begun. Even Bridge Housing acknowledges that only a portion of the clean up has begun. We cannot understand why Susan Adams claims it is complete. Perhaps she will be willing to speak to the subject in full detail. To accuse the public of "spreading misinformation" when there is lack of transparency and misinformation given to the public is misleading at best. Susan Adams lobbied to DELAY TOXIC WASTE clean up in February 2014 despite the health risk to the community. See this shocking video.
One thing we can thank former Supervisor Adams for is building community in Marinwood-Lucas Valley. We have met hundreds of our neighbors since this controversy arose.
Lisa Grady of Bridge Housing to RWQCB: "We want protection from liability after we buy Marinwood Plaza"
Renee Silveira was shocked to learn that Bridge Housing wants a guarantee after purchasing Marinwood Plaza that they will not be liable for the toxic waste.* It seems no one wants to be the responsible party to clean up all of the residual toxins that could find its way to the Silveira Ranch water source, poisoning the dairy herd, the residents and potentially thousands of people that drink milk.
Supervisor Susan Adams called multiple times and Assemblymen Mark Levine called on behalf of the developers and landowners to vacate the toxic waste clean up order and extend the final clean up date so they may have additional time to get financing and permits.
Why didn't they consider the risks to PUBLIC HEALTH first?
|Lisa Grady, Marinwood Village, Former Senior Project Manager|
See full Board Packet with the Geologica Report responses from Marinwood Plaza, LLC, Bridge Housing and Silveira Ranches HERE
Email sent to the RWQCB on January 8, 2014.
From: Lisa Grady
To: Aue, Kent@Waterboards
Cc: Tom Graf (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Subject: Water Board Order Regarding the Marinwood Plaza site
Date: Wednesday, January 08, 2014 4:47:12 PM
As you know, BRIDGE intends to develop the site post-remediation and we have assumed
that vapor mitigation in the form of sub-slab ventilation or ventilated flooring will be
necessary for some period of time in the areas currently showing vapors exceeding
allowable concentrations. We want to make sure this is taken into account with regard to
Additionally, without understanding the constraints and regulations governing the
Waterboard, it would be ideal if staff were able to modify the order with regard to timing.
While we hope this won’t be the case, the entitlements and environmental approvals may be litigated. We were anticipating that the completion of the soil removal would occur once BRIDGE has secured the necessary financing to begin construction. We anticipate that the entitlement and environmental approvals will be secured in 12 to 18 months from today. Once that occurs, and assuming there is no litigation, we would proceed with the completion of the construction documents, financing and building permitting. Typically, that takes about a year’s time. So, the earliest construction start date isn’t likely to be until June of 2016.
The other item I would like to discuss at some point is the Prospective Purchaser document
we need to protect us from liability once we take title. You indicated that the Water Board
no longer issues these but I’d like to understand how we get to an equivalent level of
protection absent that document.
Please give me a call if you have questions. Thanks and Happy New Year.
Lisa Grady | Senior Project Manager
BRIDGE Housing Corporation | 345 Spear Street, Suite 700, San Francisco, Ca., 94105
p. 415.989.1111 ext 7514
|Pregnant women and children are particularly vulnerable to toxins in the environment.|
Postscript: Lisa Grady left employment with Bridge Housing shortly after this letter was discovered and made public.
Sunday, February 7, 2016
THE NORTH WIND AND THE SUNTHE NORTH WIND and the Sun had a quarrel about which of them was the stronger. While they were disputing with much heat and bluster, a Traveler passed along the road wrapped in a cloak.
"Let us agree," said the Sun, "that he is the stronger who can strip that Traveler of his cloak."
"Very well," growled the North Wind, and at once sent a cold, howling blast against the Traveler.
With the first gust of wind the ends of the cloak whipped about the Traveler's body. But he immediately wrapped it closely around him, and the harder the Wind blew, the tighter he held it to him. The North Wind tore angrily at the cloak, but all his efforts were in vain.
Then the Sun began shine. At first his beams were gentle, and in the pleasant warmth. after the bitter cold of the North Wind, the Traveler unfastened his cloak and let it hang loosely from his shoulders. The Sun's rays grew warmer and warmer. The man took off his cap and mopped his brow. At last he became so heated that he pulled off his cloak, and, to escape the blazing sunshine, threw himself down in the welcome shade of a tree by the roadside.
Gentleness and kind persuasion win where force and bluster fail.