This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 6, 2010 10:12 AM. The previous post in this blog was Fish begins to spoil. The next post in this blog is Wyden's running scared. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Saturday, March 6, 2010

County doc not so sure about reservoir covers

Stephanie Stewart, the land use chair of the Mount Tabor neighborhood association and one of the opponents of disconnecting Portland's open drinking water reservoirs, writes:

I went to the PURB (Portland Utility Review Board) hearing on the reservoirs Wednesday night. Speakers unanimously opposed the PURB recommendation to "expeditiously close" the reservoirs.

Most notable was the testimony given by Dr. Gary Oxman (Multnomah County/City of Portland Health Officer), declaring there isn't any sound science linking open reservoirs to any public health risk/problem. So, it seems there is no public health justification for spending $400 million to build new tanks. As I see it that leaves two arguments for burial: "closed storage is the industry standard," and "rule of law requires burial." Arguably, both the industry standard and the law have been heavily influenced by industry lobbyists.

A local filmmaker (Brad Yazzolino) captured the meeting on video, and plans to post it online by Monday/Tuesday. As the mood in the room was more like an old-time Southern church than a board meeting, it might be good viewing. I don't think I heard an actual "amen," but I might have heard a "sing-it-sister" or two.

Reportedly, the city will eventually make the transcript available online along with all of the "for the record" written comments that were submitted before the meeting. I submitted a 34-page packet on behalf of the MTNA land use committee. The cover letter is posted here.

PURB members cast their votes either for or against this recommendation March 18.

Comments (15)

Stephanie's excellent comments illustrate a growing community understanding of the science that echos Dr. Oxman's position. We do not need to cover our open reservoirs.

We just found Stephanie's blog this morning. "From the Co-Chair" is filled with well researched and easy to understand information about these water issues, and benefits of our current drinking water system.

Occams Razor...all things being equal the simplest solution is the one preferred

I hear some truth-tellers were at the PURB meeting March 3rd. Too bad the rest of the citizens didn't hear them. Do these truth telling citizens know more than the new PURB Board? Who selected these people to serve on the PURB? The Public Utility Review Board should be an independent board serving the public's interest, are they and if not, who are they?

Please do not insult us anymore with the mantra that you have to do this because EPA said so. Hundreds of Environmental Protection Agency scientists state they have been victims of political interference and pressure from superiors to skew their findings.
The LT2 regulation was based on politics not science and lobbied for by those who stand to benefit financially. Our community should not have to pay over a billion dollars including debt service for a public health problem that does not exist.

The boys down there at city hall need to start to line up with the truth. A light is being shined on "their plan".

Toxic chemicals will be added to our drinking water and radon will be backed into our homes, schools and work places if we do not stop this. A huge reason the citizens should be up in arms over this!!!

Leonard, Shaff, Council and whoever else is promoting this “bull” rather than fighting for our Bull Run Water System and Reservoirs should be shunned from our community. Shame on all of those who expect us to swallow this!!

Now if you can just convince the EPA. PWB has been boosting fees in anticipation of doing something, but they haven't reached any conclusion on doing something.

In 2005 we exceeded the proposed EPA guideline of less than 1 in 10,000 incident of cryptosp. related disease, so, they changed the formula and are now the consultants are doing the sampling to see if we need to run up a $1.2 billion debt to meet a standard we met before it was even written. It's up to the public to defend their water which has served us well for over 100 years. If they aren't up to the challenge then they will be exploited just like the water.

Okay liberals - time to unite against a Bush-era ignorant EPA rule that sells our water system to corporations. If you would get off your lazy asses and contribute your time and dollars to protecting our water system, we may be able to dodge a bullet here. If you are too busy lobbying for bike boulevards, and we wind up paying 3X for water, it's your own damn fault. Act now to save our water system.

Frank, I'm not taking any political sides, but what does the recent EPA ruling in regards to Portland's water have anything to do with Bush? The ruling is under Obama's watch, right?

Another example of using science and regulation for profit.

If our City Leaders had any strength of character they would fight this like our founders fought unfair taxation from the Brits.

The EPA ruling came in 2006, under W.

With the elections coming soon, it's time to hold some feet to the fire. The community needs to let the candidates (and Council) know we are here too. It's party time.

Thanks Stephanie.

We could just call this fiasco Reservior Dogs and find a film maker. A simple rip-off of the tax payers going really wrong (to rip-off a synopsis of the movie).

If the leaders of the 1770's had been the types we have now, we still would be under British rule.

The obscene actions and intentions of the current city council with respect to fiduciary responsibility lends great urgency to looking for replacements, even recalling the entire lot!

I's been done before.

It's been done before!

I's been abused too long by these people!

Big Kahuna, you didn't read my question clearly. I wrote "...what does the recent EPA ruling in regards to Portland's water have anything to do with Bush.". I was writing about the present ruling and not 06.

The recent ruling by the EPA occurred under Obama and all of his appointees within EPA. As you know the regulations are only as good as the interpreters and enforcers.


The recent EPA statement was not a ruling, but a communication from EPA restating the ruling from 2006. Just like Salazar's recent Interior statements about wildlife are not a ruling, but communications from "W" era.

It is not about "sound science" anymore. Just keep repeating "the science is settled". Maybe a movie would help.

The widely publicized PURB meeting held last Wednesday on the open reservoirs can be viewed from link below. Many thanks to independent film maker Brad Yazzolino for his past and ongoing efforts to protect the Bull Run system, including the open reservoirs, from our unscrupulous city leaders. His films are already priceless.

One part consists of the official presentations. The other part is public comment, unanimously in favor of keeping our Bull Run system as is....no treatment plant, no open reservoir destruction. Well worth watching some very intelligent and thoughful comments by an array of citizens.

At the end of the official presentations, one member of the PURB asked if anyone in the audience was from the City Council or representing the Mayor and City Council. Not a one was there!


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