LATAG Meeting Minutes

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August 9th, 2011

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Regular Board Meeting

Libby Area Technical Assistance Group, Inc.

PO Box 53 • Libby, MT 59923

August 9th, 2011 • Regular Board Meeting Minutes

(Note: bold items within paragraphs are motions made and voted on as well as action items agreed upon.)

Board Member Attendees:

  • Eileen Carney
  • LeRoy Thom
  • Mike Noble
  • Karen Horton
  • Phillip Erquiaga
  • Brad Black
Contractor/Employee Attendees:
  • Tracy McNew, Grant Administrator
Guest Attendees:
  • Deborah McKean, EPA
  • John Podolinsky, MT DEQ
  • Victor Ketellapper, EPA
  • Mike Cirian, EPA
  • Mel Parker
  • Geoff McKenzie, CDM
  • Rebecca Thomas, EPA
  • Robert Goltz, CDM
  • Christina Progess, EPA
  • Steve Wharton, EPA

1.       Meeting began at approximately 6:00pm. 

2.       Introductions were made around the room. 

3.       EPA Report

a) Mike C. gave a construction update. 18 ERS cleanups have been completed this year. 47,800 cubic yards of soil have been taken to the amphitheatre at the mine site. A fence is up at Riverfront Park and construction is to start around September 1 after a finished plan is received from the City’s designer.  

b) Neighborhoods are being identified and approached including Post Trailer court and Northwood as per the Neighborhood approach to cleanup. Additional sampling is being conducted in neighborhoods where visible vermiculite was left in past cleanups activities. A refusal letter is also being written to let residents know that there is not cost to property owners for participating. LeRoy asked if there is any liability risk related to cross contamination if EPA is not granted access to properties. Mike C. answered that this is being reviewed internally. Karen asked what the difference between the older 5 point and more recent 30 point composite means for soil sampling. Mike C. explained that it is the number of points in an area that soil is collected from.

c) Mel P. asked if there is a date which residents need to allow access to their properties by. Mike C. answered no. Mel also asked what EPA would do if one trailer in a park would not move. Mike C. stated that EPA could clean around a trailer, it is just preferred that they are moved and cleaned underneath. ERS or a future program like it, would be responsible if further cleanup was needed after EPA is gone. Phillip asked if ERS costs anything and Mike C. answered no. Brad asked what most ERS calls are. Mike answered that they are usually homeowners doing demolitions or remodels.

d) Mike C. reported that EPA is doing yard call backs for re-vegetation. About 40 yards have been redone, and EPA is working to continue improving the process. Mel P. asked where soils are obtained from. Mike C. answered that there are two sites, one outside of Libby about 14 miles and the other around Kalispell.

e) Victor K. announced that a report would be issued on 8/19 regarding the review of draft toxicity values since inter-agency review has been completed. There will then be a 60 day public comment period and a tentative listening session on 10/6/11 which will be available in Libby via conference call.

f) Victor also stated that the nominees for the Scientific Advisory Board will be announced any day. Brad commented that he just got an email with this announcement before the meeting and that he will forward it to the board. Public comments will be accepted and conflicts of interest checked prior to the announcement of the board members.   

g) Mike C. let us know that the long term A&E contract was awarded to CDM and the long term construction contract will be awarded soon.

h) Victor announced that ABS has started for residential scenarios and will continue throughout the summer.

i) A fact sheet is available at the EPA and DEQ offices regarding the woodchips that have been in the news recently.

j) The Assistant Regional Administrator, Carol Campbell is tentatively planning a visit to Libby on 9/12/11. The Regional Administrator, Jim Martin is tentatively planning a visit from 10/12- 14.

k) Rebecca T. reported briefly by OU number, starting with OU2. TAG will receive a letter next week with answers to Terry S’s questions on OU2. She states that remediation is complete. ABS collecting and post risk assessment will still be conducted. An RI will begin being prepared by CDM on the railroad corridor. BNSF presented to EPA and the possibility of entering in to a formal agreement is being explored. On the highway corridor, OU8, the RI report is being worked on. Mel asked Rebecca about his property regarding ABS. Rebecca stated that she would be happy to meet with him to discuss the issue.

l) Christina P reported on OU3. Forest Service meetings are being conducted to discuss exposures based on new risk values. At the meetings risks are being explained and procedures to help protect employees are being shared.  

4.       DEQ Report- John Popolinsky

·         DEQ is working with TetraTec to begin dry season ABS sampling in Troy.

·         DEQ is also participating in Forrest Service meetings.

·         John stated that he is investigating a complaint logged in June regarding pollution in Rainy Creek. He and Mel P. discussed the specific area of Rainy Creek in question to some extent. 

5.       W.R. Grace Report (No Report) 

6.       Special Presentations

a) Technical Advisor Report (No Report)

b) Mel Parker- Mel created a portfolio report in 3 ring binder format with photographs, articles and comments which was submitted to EPA’s administrative record by Bonnie Lavelle. He would like to discuss the issues brought up in his portfolio report and agreed to bring up the topic at a later meeting so that both the TAG board and EPA had an opportunity to review the materials. 

7.       Meeting minutes from July 2011 were reviewed and unanimously approved. 

8.       Treasurer’s Report –No Report

  • Balance remains $37,680.86 as previously in July.

9.       Sub-Committee Reports

a) Communications Committee- Phillip Erquiaga (Chairperson) – The website is up to date.

b) Nomination Committee- LeRoy Thom (Chairperson) – No Report

c) O&M Attendance Rotation Committee- Mike N./LeRoy T. (Co-chairs) – No Report

d) Technical Advisor Committee- Dr. Brad Black (Chairperson) – Brad voiced concern over effective characterization of risk in the community and suggested that it will be important for Terry S. to review the ABS plan which is supposed to become available soon. He made a motion which was unanimously passed to have Terry review the document when it becomes available

10.   Old Business

a) Newsletter- Phillip will complete this.

b) Draft letter to senators were reviewed and it was unanimously approved to send them in support of Dr. Black’s nomination to EPA scientific advisory board.     

c) CAG/ TAG sponsorship of the Public Health Symposium was discussed. CAG will further discuss the topic at their Thursday meeting. 

11.   New Business

a) It was unanimously approved to move TAG’s September meeting date to 9/13. 

12.   Open Discussion-

a) Whether to have Terry S. review the draft toxicity value document was discussed extensively. Karen made a motion that he review it and provide a written report. Phillip seconded the motion and it passed unanimously. 

13.   Action items were reviewed and agreed upon. 

14.   In kind hours were submitted. 

15.   E-board meeting was scheduled for Friday 8/19/11 at Noon to take place at the Venture Inn. 

16.   The next regular board meeting will be Tuesday September, 13th 2011 at the College.  

17.   The meeting was ended with unanimous approval at approximately 8:05PM


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