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Posts published in “Day: October 20, 2016”

EPA to hold Waste Pits Meeting Thursday Public comments sought

HIGHLANDS – After 8 years of posting on the National Priorities List of Superfund sites, the EPA will finally announce the details of their Proposed Plan for dealing with the toxic wastes in the storage pits in the San Jacinto River.

Officials from the Dallas office of the EPA, or federal Environmental Protection Agency, will be on hand at a meeting on Thursday evening, Oct. 20 at 6:30 p.m. in the Highlands Community Center building.

The press announcement released last month stated that they had determined that all toxic waste, which is deadly diozins and furans, should be removed from the north and south impoundments which straddle the I-10 bridge over the San Jacinto River.

The Superfund Process is a slow and methodical step by step regulations that end up with a “Record of Decision” which will be announced by the EPA at the end of December. Theoretically this will end the study process, and allow negotiations and removal work to proceed.

However, We are now entering a 60 day public comment period, which will end on November 28. The public is urged to express their views on the problem and the proposed solution, at this meeting or directly to the EPA on their website or by email. Each comment will be answered, according to EPA, and entered into the public record. It is possible, but not likely, that the Proposed Plan could change after this process.

PROPONENTS & OPPONENTS CONTINUE DISAGREEMENTS

Jackie Young, the most vocal of the proponents that want the toxic wastes removed, has called for the public to attend this meeting, and then submit their comments or opinions supporting the complete removal. Young claims that opponents have been circulating false and misleading information regarding the clean-up process.

Young stated that “I look forward to the EPA clearing up misinformation regarding the Pits and the ability for the clean-up to be safely executed.”

The EPA said that Thursday’s meeting is “to inform residents of the proposed cleanup strategy and obtain comments on the Proposed Plan and EPA’s preferred remedy.

If you are unable to attend, or do not submit comments at the meeting, you can still send your opinion to the EPA before November 28.

The Online address is:

www.epa.gov/tx/forms/sjrwp-comments

The email address is:

R6_San_Jacinto_Waste_ Pits_Comments@epa.gov.

A group of opponents to the clean-up, known as San Jacinto Citizens Against Pollution, with the website keepitcapped.com have just issued another position paper, from an environmental expert. Dr. Tim Barber, who works for the Environmental Resource Management firm, a private consulting company, has stated in a press release that “perhaps the most significant issue associated with dredging’s potential effectiveness is the extent of residual contamination following dreding. No dredging operation can remove every particle of contaminated sediment, and field results to date for completed environmental dredging projects suggest that post-dredging residual levels, expressed as contaminant concentration in surface sediments, have often been greater than the cleanup levels.

Highlands welcomes Marine back from the War on Terror

HIGHLANDS–From Camp Pendelton in California Drew Greer was looking forward to a relaxing homecoming to his Grace Lane residence, but his family and community had another idea, a welcome worthy of the dedication and service he had completed as a Marine.

His father, Stebo Greer, related how Drew had worked as the Chick-Fil-A cow mascot before putting on his Marine uniform. “Highlands has been very supportive of my family. I would like to thank them for turning out to welcome home my son and I hope that this will be a start of many more welcome homes for our service people.”

As he rounded the corner of Main St. to Wallisville out to Highlands Elementary, where he had attended as a pupil, he first saw a man pointing a camera at him and asked his brother and mother, Dr. Kim Rawlinson, “What is he taking pictures of out here?”

Then to his notable shock he saw a double line of flags backed by Highlands Volunteer Fire Dept. trucks with a team of motorcycles in the lead and ahead of that Miss Highlands and Highlands Junior Miss holding a banner that saying “Welcome Home.”

After being joined by the Chick-Fil-A Cow in his mother’s convertible a procession went north to his residence where more ceremonies commenced.

Initially, old stories of Drew before his service were told to rib him and show their notice. The kids bestowed small cows to him from Chick-Fil-A as an honoring. Some of his experiences during the service were relayed, he learned to cook an iguana lizard for example.

Drew’s response to the events are, “I thought it was awesome, I was fully surprised. It was amazing. It meant a lot to me to have all these people come out. My brother took me out to eat breakfast and play a little pool and then said I said are we going home, he said, ‘Naugh come on we need to go somewhere else.’”

Corky Hamilton Senior Ride Captain of the Southeast Texas Patriot Guard Riders said, “Anytime someone has a son or daughter come back from the military all they have to do is contact the Southeast Texas PGR or Corky Hamilton, we do all the work all they have to do is show up.”

The number for the Hamilton’s is (832) 385-3070.