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Environmental Rip Off????

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  • shes
    Ed Campbell WWP Email Member (shes@seanet.com) The Port of Tacoma since about 1993 has been building a number of Environmental Habitat renewal
    Message 1 of 2 , Dec 28, 2012
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      Ed Campbell WWP Email Member (shes@...) The Port of Tacoma since about 1993 has been building a
      number of Environmental Habitat renewal projects in the Tacoma Tide
      Flats involving about 77 Acres of land. For example see
      www.portoftacoma/Page.aspx7cid=3829 and
      http://www.portoftacoma/hylebos-creek. Since about 1900 the tide
      flats and marsh have been completely covered by fill, most of which
      remains. One of the latest is a building project started in 2009 and
      completed in 2010 known as Circling Waters involving 26 acres of the
      land purchased in 2006 from Marne View, Inc. Marine View Inc
      purchased the property in over ten years before in 1996, and my
      client, a Trust, had a secured interest in the property for the
      balance of the purchase price, much as a bank or mortgage company
      would have on a home or commercial land loan. Pay was slow on the
      note so when the property was sold to the Port, the Trust entered a
      separate guarantee contract guaranteeing to reimburse the Port for
      any Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA) remediation found before May 26,
      2011, provided the Trust was given 21 days prior notice of the plans
      to remediate and furnished cost estimates and if possible firm bids.

      On May 26, 2011, the Port, through a local Plaintiff's Attorney,
      delivered a notice to the Port that it had in fact already done its
      remediation and that it cost over $500,000 and it was claiming all of
      the guaranteed funds. The fiduciaries felt they had to resist this
      late claim as it did not even comply with the notice agreements made
      by the Port. So what, just another law suit. The trial court in
      Pierce County, the home of the Port, agreed with the Port and awarded
      it the balance left in the guarantee escrow account along with
      $144,479.37 in attorney fees by way of a summary judgment (without
      trial). An appeal has been filed, and the Trust's appeal brief has
      been filed and is available from me if ordered before the first of
      the year. Case is C.P.B. & L Trust v. Port of Tacoma No, 439409,
      Div., 2, Washington State Court of Appeals

      The Port appeared to take the position, affirmed by the
      trial court, that secured creditors could be liable for the hazardous
      waste and MTCA substances found on the property, and beczuse it would
      have been entitled to the funds under the act, the notice
      requirements under the escrow and purchase and sale agreements, were
      immaterial. This clever reasoning threatens the future availability
      of secured loans in the State of Washington, the case uncovered other
      interesting facts. Who wants to loan in a state that will make the
      lender liable for the remediation costs under a MTCA? The area of
      the Port of Tacoma is considered one of the largest superfund sights
      in the nation. The Port and others in the area have been involved in
      clean ups since 1993 and are getting ready to declare victory and go
      on as if all has been cleaned up. However, as evidence that the
      Asarco Slag found on the property was not being released until the
      Port released it in 2009 or 2010, and thus not a source of arsenic
      claimed to be MTCA contaminants, we presented a map completed by a
      former owner of the property who died in 1991.

      The map maker would know as he was in the business. His map
      shows some 600 + acres of Asarco Slag Waste deposits in the Port
      area. As deposits date from 1910 or so, this may be only 10% of the
      total waste deposits made. There could be five to six thousand or
      more acred of Asarco slag in the area to depths perhaps 12 feet and
      beyond. According to our investigations only about 50 acres have
      been "remediated." and the rest has not even been specifically
      identified. Our point is that if the Port did not have to
      remediate the other acres, it then admits that the slag was stable
      and was not releasing any MTCA and thus the slag on the Trust's
      property, which had been there from at least 1971, was also stable
      and did not present a threat of being MTCA contaminants. The Trial
      Court did not consider our arguments or the map evidence, part of the
      business records of a former owner..

      So we believe the Port has proved that it is sitting on at
      least 550 acres or slag on the Tacoma Tide Flats that are MTCA
      contaminants and in need of remediation, and perhaps much more. One
      Port supporter tried to claim to me that all of these properties had
      been remediated. But it just does not hold up. Where are the
      literally thousands of trip tickets? She did not get back to me
      after I raised this point. If they were remediated, it would have
      had to be in the last twenty years and there would be a truck load
      ticket for every load taken, and since the areas is now all filled
      in, for every load of new fill deposited. That could be enough truck
      tickets to perhaps fill the Tacoma library. Or perhaps it could have
      been removed during dredging of the tidal waterways, but I saw no
      evidence of that between 1994 and present when I visited the
      area. Furthermore all of the gravel pits in the area could have made
      a fortune on selling the clean fill and deposits, and that would have
      included 54 acres of the property that was sold to Marine View. It
      never happened, and if it had the Trust would have been substantially
      paid off and Marine View would have been sitting on a fortune in
      property value that it would have been highly unlikely to have sold
      to the Port..

      My devious conclusions. The Port has been playing a shell game,
      cleaning up a few places, making a few environmental show pieces, yet
      hiding the true nature of the problem that much of the Tacoma Tide
      Flats are filled with Asarco smelted slag. This slag has been
      deposited around the area simce about 1900 and it might bankrupt the
      Port if it tried to correct the problem, or shut the Port down, or
      both. The Port got out ahead of the problem and, possibly with local
      and national media and environmental groups looking the other way, or
      collaborating, it might be about to hood wink the public and say all
      is well, we cleaned up the superfund site. Would any government go
      along with that. Would the EPA be complicite? Could this be done
      without some of the highest cooperation? Well the map is of public
      record, part of the court file. Is there really anyone who thinks
      this is newsworthy, any real journalist who would risk covering this
      matter. So far I am a loan voice crying in the wilderness and about
      to be silenced., as I also try to make the Port responsible for its
      own contract promises.
    • J. Keen Holland
      J. Keen Holland WWP Email Member and Construction Equipment Owner (OldPolitico@cs.com) Sounds a bit like the Borough of Hamburg, PA. This was once a center of
      Message 2 of 2 , Dec 28, 2012
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        J. Keen Holland WWP Email Member and Construction Equipment Owner (OldPolitico@...) Sounds a bit like the Borough of Hamburg, PA. This was once a center of the battery breaking industry - breaking automotive battery cases to remove the lead for recycling into new batteries produced at other locations in Berks County. The broken cases, contaminated with lead and battery acid, were used as fill all around the borough. A few sites that don't have buildings on them have been subject to remediation, but no one really wants to know how much of this stuff is still around.


        Ed Campbell WWP Email Member (shes@...) The Port of Tacoma since about 1993 has been building a
        number of Environmental Habitat renewal projects in the Tacoma Tide
        Flats involving about 77 Acres of land. For example see
        www.portoftacoma/Page.aspx7cid=3829 and
        http://www.portoftacoma/hylebos-creek. Since about 1900 the tide
        flats and marsh have been completely covered by fill, most of which
        remains. One of the latest is a building project started in 2009 and
        completed in 2010 known as Circling Waters involving 26 acres of the
        land purchased in 2006 from Marne View, Inc. Marine View Inc
        purchased the property in over ten years before in 1996, and my
        client, a Trust, had a secured interest in the property for the
        balance of the purchase price, much as a bank or mortgage company
        would have on a home or commercial land loan. Pay was slow on the
        note so when the property was sold to the Port, the Trust entered a
        separate guarantee contract guaranteeing to reimburse the Port for
        any Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA) remediation found before May 26,
        2011, provided the Trust was given 21 days prior notice of the plans
        to remediate and furnished cost estimates and if possible firm bids.

        On May 26, 2011, the Port, through a local Plaintiff's Attorney,
        delivered a notice to the Port that it had in fact already done its
        remediation and that it cost over $500,000 and it was claiming all of
        the guaranteed funds. The fiduciaries felt they had to resist this
        late claim as it did not even comply with the notice agreements made
        by the Port. So what, just another law suit. The trial court in
        Pierce County, the home of the Port, agreed with the Port and awarded
        it the balance left in the guarantee escrow account along with
        $144,479.37 in attorney fees by way of a summary judgment (without
        trial). An appeal has been filed, and the Trust's appeal brief has
        been filed and is available from me if ordered before the first of
        the year. Case is C.P.B. & L Trust v. Port of Tacoma No, 439409,
        Div., 2, Washington State Court of Appeals

        The Port appeared to take the position, affirmed by the
        trial court, that secured creditors could be liable for the hazardous
        waste and MTCA substances found on the property, and beczuse it would
        have been entitled to the funds under the act, the notice
        requirements under the escrow and purchase and sale agreements, were
        immaterial. This clever reasoning threatens the future availability
        of secured loans in the State of Washington, the case uncovered other
        interesting facts. Who wants to loan in a state that will make the
        lender liable for the remediation costs under a MTCA? The area of
        the Port of Tacoma is considered one of the largest superfund sights
        in the nation. The Port and others in the area have been involved in
        clean ups since 1993 and are getting ready to declare victory and go
        on as if all has been cleaned up. However, as evidence that the
        Asarco Slag found on the property was not being released until the
        Port released it in 2009 or 2010, and thus not a source of arsenic
        claimed to be MTCA contaminants, we presented a map completed by a
        former owner of the property who died in 1991.

        The map maker would know as he was in the business. His map
        shows some 600 + acres of Asarco Slag Waste deposits in the Port
        area. As deposits date from 1910 or so, this may be only 10% of the
        total waste deposits made. There could be five to six thousand or
        more acred of Asarco slag in the area to depths perhaps 12 feet and
        beyond. According to our investigations only about 50 acres have
        been "remediated." and the rest has not even been specifically
        identified. Our point is that if the Port did not have to
        remediate the other acres, it then admits that the slag was stable
        and was not releasing any MTCA and thus the slag on the Trust's
        property, which had been there from at least 1971, was also stable
        and did not present a threat of being MTCA contaminants. The Trial
        Court did not consider our arguments or the map evidence, part of the
        business records of a former owner..

        So we believe the Port has proved that it is sitting on at
        least 550 acres or slag on the Tacoma Tide Flats that are MTCA
        contaminants and in need of remediation, and perhaps much more. One
        Port supporter tried to claim to me that all of these properties had
        been remediated. But it just does not hold up. Where are the
        literally thousands of trip tickets? She did not get back to me
        after I raised this point. If they were remediated, it would have
        had to be in the last twenty years and there would be a truck load
        ticket for every load taken, and since the areas is now all filled
        in, for every load of new fill deposited. That could be enough truck
        tickets to perhaps fill the Tacoma library. Or perhaps it could have
        been removed during dredging of the tidal waterways, but I saw no
        evidence of that between 1994 and present when I visited the
        area. Furthermore all of the gravel pits in the area could have made
        a fortune on selling the clean fill and deposits, and that would have
        included 54 acres of the property that was sold to Marine View. It
        never happened, and if it had the Trust would have been substantially
        paid off and Marine View would have been sitting on a fortune in
        property value that it would have been highly unlikely to have sold
        to the Port..

        My devious conclusions. The Port has been playing a shell game,
        cleaning up a few places, making a few environmental show pieces, yet
        hiding the true nature of the problem that much of the Tacoma Tide
        Flats are filled with Asarco smelted slag. This slag has been
        deposited around the area simce about 1900 and it might bankrupt the
        Port if it tried to correct the problem, or shut the Port down, or
        both. The Port got out ahead of the problem and, possibly with local
        and national media and environmental groups looking the other way, or
        collaborating, it might be about to hood wink the public and say all
        is well, we cleaned up the superfund site. Would any government go
        along with that. Would the EPA be complicite? Could this be done
        without some of the highest cooperation? Well the map is of public
        record, part of the court file. Is there really anyone who thinks
        this is newsworthy, any real journalist who would risk covering this
        matter. So far I am a loan voice crying in the wilderness and about
        to be silenced., as I also try to make the Port responsible for its
        own contract promises.
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