You can’t see the Special Presentation by Attorney Haynes Studstill on Opioid Litigation (Work Session) because Gretchen was not there with the LAKE video camera yesterday morning, and the agenda says it’s only in the Work Session. Lowndes County does video its own County Commission meetings, but they haven’t posted the video of that yet. Meanwhile, the City of Valdosta did decide to join a lawsuit against big pharma about opioid addiction. Another county legal item for tonight is FY2019 Juvenile Justice Incentive Grant Program Request for Proposals (RFP).
Road Map, 2009 Lowndes County Thoroughfare Plan.
HISTORY, FACTS AND ISSUES: The Lowndes County Board of Commissioners first adopted the Thoroughfare Plan in 1983. Since then, the Thoroughfare Plan has been revised numerous times Continue reading
They started with some words about Deputy Chris Butler and a moment of silence (see VDT Obituary. Then they plowed through agenda. Commissioner Demarcus Marshall did introduce a little levity by asking if the drug testing for the MIDS bus service was just for the drivers. Answer: yes.
On the dozen Sheriff pursuit vehicles bid, Commissioner Marshall also noted that a few years ago (they voted 25 March 2014 there was a similar bid of Cass Burch vs. Langdale Ford for which they had additional testimony. The excuse for picking Cass Burch even though once again not the low bid was that it was that the Burch price was still less than the state contract price, and maintenance would cost less. It’s refreshing to see them actually discussing bids. It’s curious they only ever seem to choose a bid that is not the lowest when it’s from Cass Burch.
The County Manager had no additional report to his no report of the previous morning.
There was one citizen wishing to be heard: Leslie Jacobs of Jacobs Ladder on 5866 Bradford Road North, in Continue reading
Why do they bother having Work Sessions at all, if they’re not going to discuss anything? Chairman Bill Slaughter, who at the recent planning session said, “Lowndes County is as transparent as we could possibly be,” was absent. Commissioner Demarcus Marshall, who argued at the planning session for moving the Work Session to a time when citizens are not working, also was not at the Work Session as usual, I hear because he works during the day. I don’t know why Commissioner Mark Wisenbaker was not there. Other than Vice-Chair Joyce Evans, who didn’t read the agenda item numbers, only Commissioners Scottie Orenstein and Clay Griner were there this morning. They asked no questions, as Griner had said at the planning meeting there was no need to, because staff supplied them with everything they needed to know.
To her credit, Joyce Evans asked the only question, whether the Rural Transportation Drug and Alcohol Testing Program was new (It’s not new, answered County Engineer Mike Fletcher.)
The only two citizens there were Gretchen Quarterman and Jody Hall, each of whom had hour-long round-trips to attend this three-minute non-meeting.
The Valdosta Daily Times reporter arrived after the meeting was adjourned. He at least got the packet provided at each meeting to the “Legal Organ”. You, the citizens and taxpayers did not get that courtesy from the county.
You can see for yourself the lack of information in the links below to each of the LAKE videos, followed by a LAKE video playlist. I didn’t bother with notes on the items this time. See also the agenda, which I spent more time posting than they did holding the meeting. Continue reading
Back on the agenda this morning, the Old Quitman Road Bridge replacement over the CSX RR has been discussed since at least 2011 when it was on the T-SPLOST list, and in September 2016 it came up for discussion again, and the Commission approved surveying and engineering. Last month they discussed the plans, drawings, etc., and approved those. See this playlist of LAKE videos of this item in previous meetings.
This morning’s item for voting tomorrow evening is Continue reading
CSX stock went up 29% in January on rumors of a corporate takeover. The same CSX that let a plume of toxic chemicals leak below its Rice Rail Yard in Waycross, including into the upper Suwannee River watershed. It’s not clear a corporate takeover would do anything to stop that, or other possible contamination in for example Valdosta.
John Burr, WJCT, 6 February 2017, Business Brief: CSX Board To Consider Possible Takeover Friday, Continue reading
Yet another fireball, water supply turned off, state of emergency, from an oil train. When did you last hear of a solar farm explosion? Do we expect hastily-built and unnecessary fracked methane pipelines to be any safer than these shoddy exploding shale oil train tank cars? How long must fossil fuel fireballs rain down before we all get on with clean sun, wind, and water to power the world?
People are still sick and dying in Waycross, and answers are still few, but now there’s increasing help, and organization at a meeting next Tuesday. Remember wastewater from the Waycross SevenOut SuperFund site was sent to the Pecan Row Landfill in Valdosta, and we could have similar sites here, too. Helping Waycross is helping everyone deal with toxic chemicals. -jsq
Facebook event, Meeting Announcement – Tuesday Evening, January 6, 2014, Continue reading
At the EPA meeting in Waycross about the Seven Out Superfund site, EPA, GA EPD, and state health officials also had information about crossover contamination in Lowndes County.
Matthew J. Huyser, On-Scene Coordinator for U.S. EPA, told me that before EPA shipped those 196,500 gallons of wastewater from Seven Out to the Pecan Row Landfill in Lowndes County they had applied procedures that were supposed to ensure those liquids were no longer toxic and had tested them to be sure. He said he would send me the specifics on that. I didn’t ask him whether CSX toxic wastes were shipped to Lowndes County.
Huyser also said EPA had checked the record of that receiving landfill before sending anything there, and it had a good record. He seemed surprised to learn Continue reading
CSX was involved directly in the Seven Out contamination, storing hazardous water that leaked: and then that water was apparently shipped to the Pecan Row Landfill in Lowndes County. This is in addition to the the CSX trichloroethylene groundwater contamination dating back to 2000 and earlier.
According to a letter from Georgia Department of Natural Resources to BCX, Inc. of 20 July 2004, EPA Identification Number: GAR000030007,
- Twenty-seven tanks of wastewater were stored at the facility. Four portable tanks were storing the excess capacity of wastewater next door on property owned by CSX Transportation. These portable 10,000-gallon tanks were not labeled to indicate their contents;
- According to a BCX representative, one of the portable 10,000-gallon tanks had a gasket failure on the forward manhole which caused the release of an unknown substance onto the ground at the site owned by CSX Transportation;
- Dead vegetation was observed in a 15 feet by 30 feet area downgradient of the tank that caused the release;
- A yellowish-green substance was observed on the ground between the portable tank that had the release and another portable tank adjacent to it. There was also dead vegetation observed between these two tanks; and
And GA EPD tested the soil and found something the document doesn’t specify, but whatever it was was enough that: Continue reading