November 20, 2017 
 Monday 
 
 

Forum
Topic:
Water and Arsenic: which came first?

       

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 By Michael Miller

08/12/2013  12:34PM

Your theories have merit. Many informed or casually curious people are confused about the nature of the legal problem we face. Who is driving this corrupt legal claim for $2 million in damages to Californians? What groups maintain, advocate and see social progress by shutting down our resource industries?

The issue is not arsenic pollution and degradation to the environment of Kanaka Creek. Kanaka Creek is as healthy as most high Sierra Nevada Mountain water courses. Those polluted are due to human waste from too much poop or industrial toxic waste unnatural to the surroundings. So what are the issues driving our Sacramento government employees to sue Original Sixteen to One Mine, Inc. for $2,000,000?

I believe it was driven by angry or jealous or guilty or ignorant or malicious or arrogant individuals both working at the water agencies or not. Their actions are in the past and date back to 1993. But this is 2013, and the claims of legal misbehavior were filed in Sierra County Superior Court May of 2009.

My theory has merit. There is a serious problem in California’s execution of the law. I am sure that some individuals now employed in Sacramento realize that pursuing this claim for $2 million is not right, not good behavior or even beneficial to Californians. But they may suffer job relate economic consequences if expressing this view.

They should be saying, “Wow, something is wrong here. Yes, thirteen monthly reports were not filed, but this defendant should not have been required to perform those 1,400 tests per year. The reason for the initial requirement was due to the milling of ore, which produced a waste product. Once the mill ceased operation in 1998, the testing requirements should have been reduced to meet the actual circumstances at the mine site. Not only did my fellow water bureaucrats fail to adjust the testing in 1998, but they failed to adjust the requirement in the following two permit renewals (2003 and 2008). They fucked up and now I am asked to protect their errors.”

So the problem is: how can a poorly reasoned lawsuit be set aside if you work as a governmental public servant. For this result, I visited Governor Jerry Brown and met with one of his chief advisers. I also made myself available to the Chairman of the Water Board and staff. I do not suggest that all public servants realize the mistake and want to settle this aggression. I feel that those I spoke with sensed the inequity of the law, its definition and more, but nothing has changed!

Those angry or jealous or guilty or ignorant or malicious or arrogant individuals smell the blood of a wounded wolf. So I am asking you to find the mechanism to stop these predators and aid those who know this lawsuit is wrong. Will the wolf survive? Ask Los Lobos. Let's address the causes and call them out. Let’s expose this inane behavior and allow them to say, “Well, a mistake was made. I for one want to correct it. Set aside this lawsuit right now.”
 By LostSierra

08/10/2013  2:44PM

The use of a Sono filter will take all the arsenic out. They are cheap to build. See the net for info on them. Used in Bangladesh to remove arsenic from domestic water.
 By Big Al

08/09/2013  5:28PM

Matt Emrick, Mining Lawyer in Roseville

http://mlelaw.com/home
 By fredmcain

08/09/2013  9:15AM

Michael,

I have my own idea and theory as to what is driving a lot of this stuff. First of all, I want to say that I agree with everything you posted on this but it's just that I suspect there is something deeper cooking down below the surface.

It is simply this: Environmental groups such as the Sierra Club and the National Resources Defense Council, both of which are very powerful in California, subscribe to a strong ideology that there should be *NO* mining or logging in the National Forests. Period. They want all extraction businesses terminated in the National Forests.

Therefore, I strongly suspect that this whole thing over arsenic in the waste water is nothing more than a guise or an excuse to close the mine. That is their objective in my opinion. Shut the Original Sixteen To One Mine down along with any other mines still operating in the National Forest.

This might also explain the fine over the lack of reports. It appears crazy on the surface but when you think of their deeper logic (end mining in the Forest) then it all begins to make sense, doesn't it?

Would a class action lawsuit on our part make a difference? Beats me. I can't answer that but I tend to be pessimistic about it. Part of the problem is that these environmental groups have a good chunk of popular public opinion on their side and they know it.

So, what to do? I think we need to get our word out and educate the public more and you have already done that quite a bit with some of your YouTube videos. Still, it would be nice if we could do more. I think there are some editors at the Wall Street Journal that might be interested in your story.

The sad and bitter ironic fact is that underground gold mining – especially the kind of traditional mining you're doing with cars and tracks – is remarkably "environmentally friendly". By pushing for their damned wind turbines, the environmental groups themselves are probably contributing to far greater environmental damage than the Original Sixteen To One could ever do. Yes, ironic indeed.

Regards,
Fred M. Cain
 By Michael Miller

08/08/2013  10:35AM

Thanks David for the suggestion. While numerous misguided enforcements of environmental situations occur, ours has single issues important to address. Joining an effort in progress, seems not the best way for the Sixteen to One to redirect the enforcement levied against us. My wish is: gain power for change with a cross section of groups and individuals, who realize that problems exist and have yet to get involved in solutions.

One single issue is the uncontestable fact that those responsible for issuing a permit failed to follow the law and its procedures for determining the level of testing required. The mine quit running the mill in 1998, but for three permit renewals the water staff did not take that into determining the number of tests it required. Another single issue is that the lawsuit’s bitch is for not filing 13 monthly reports. There has been zero harm to Kanaka Creek or the People of California, who are the Plaintiffs!

Ideas welcomed.
 By David I

08/06/2013  10:16PM

Hello Mike,I recommend P.L.P., an you may want to get a hold of Dave Mc Cracken of the new 49ers. He has a good attorney group out of Portland, Oregon fighting the Fish and Wildlife Department over new dredge prohibition regulations. You might look up the Pebble Project in Alaska. They are fighting the E.P.A. over water.
Also Congress is investigating the E.P.A. for settling cases out of court from law suits filed by Environmental groups, with out judicial review. Causing the environmental laws to be more restrictive.
 By Michael Miller

08/06/2013  5:56PM

Most entries under this topic offer fact, thought and opinion about specific properties of water and its qualities. Water has become the buzz word for speculations. The time for reality dialog about naturally occurring minerals and elements is past due. Precious wealth of time and money continues to chase phantom claims propagated by difficult groups and individuals to define their motives. The obvious is for money but many are just plain ignorant people of the subject. It is troublesome because most of the people are intelligent. But, it must end. The arsenic levels in the water traveling through our property harms nothing. A much more logical agreement supports that it is healthy!

I write today after reading “Clips from Alleghany” on August 5 by fredmcain. I agree that one place to make a difference is to stop the aiding and abetting by California’s water/public servants who support water nonsense. The issues are grander than saving the Sixteen to One. There is an endangered species larger than our miners. It is all those in our domestic, natural resource industries and the ethics of extraction. America, you are getting screwed! Americans are paying more for the use of our natural necessities than necessary and the overcharges are going to nonproductive people. It is easy to broaden these observations, but I prefer to work on solutions. So, let’s go.

At the June Annual Shareholder Meeting I presented an idea that challenges the legality of a willful, negligent and non-legal filing for monetary damages exceeding $2 million. Those individuals who initiated this lawsuit were encouraged by nonprofit organizations or individuals who have no clue about the specific issues at the Sixteen to One; however, the employees, public servants, working under control of the Central Regional Water Quality Control Board cannot hide behind ignorance. Neither can the Board. Water is their job!

Here is how all Americans can affect change. It is called a class action suit. Following is information to consider:

As with so many other issues, California is on the cutting edge of the class-action boom. The Supreme Court, like its predecessors, has shown no hesitation in developing its own class-action jurisprudence incorporating principles of federal class action law in some cases and departing markedly from federal practice in other respects.
Statutory and common law foundations of California class action law: Federal rule of Civil Procedure 23
The primary statutory authority for class actions in California is Code of Civil Procedure 382. It provides that: “When the question is one of a common or general interest, of many persons, or when the parties are numerous and it is impracticable to bring them all in before the court, one or more may sue or defend for the benefit of all.”
California Rules of Court, Rules 3760.3771 governs motion practice, class notice, the settlement approval process and discovery against class members, among other topics. In California, class certification requirements are found in the case law. Sav-On Drug Stores v. Superior Court, 34 Cal. 4th 319, 326 (2004). The plaintiff must establish the existence of “an ascertainable class” and a “well defined community of interest among class members.”
Requirements: (1) Predominant common questions of law or fact; (2) class representatives with claims or defenses typical of class; and (3) class representatives who can adequately represent the class. Id.
Plaintiffs are required to show that class treatment would “provide substantial benefits” to both the courts and the litigants.
Trial courts are permitted to look to federal class action law in the absence of a relevant state law precedent; Rule 23(b) has often been used as that guide.
Consumer class actions in California are governs by their own statute, the Consumer Legal Remedies Act, Cal. Civil Code 1781. The CLRA includes specific certification requirements… as well as detailed provisions about the method and content of the class notice.
There are several areas where California law differs from federal law. These differences suggest that California is a somewhat more hospitable forum for class actions than federal court.
1. Public Policy Favoring Class Actions – California law has “a public policy which encourages the use of the class actions device.” Sav-On Drug Stores v. Superior Court, 34 Cal. 4th 319, 326 (2004). To effectuate that public policy, trial courts have “an obligation to consider the use of… innovation procedural tools proposed by a party to certify a manageable class” and are urged to be “procedurally innovative.” Id. At 339. Federal law carries no similar imprimatur for the class action.
2. No Dispositive Motions Prior to Class Certification.
3. No Merits Review As Part of Certification – California courts “view the question of certification as essentially a procedural one that does not ask whether an action is legally or factually meritorious.” Linder v. Thrifty Oil Co., 23 Cal, 4th 429 (200)
4. Opt-In Procedure Prohibited
5. Interlocutory Appeals from Class Certification Orders
6. Depositions of Unnamed Class Members
7. Injunctive Relief Prior to Certification
8. Tolling of Individual Claims
9. Costs of Class Notice – Under California law, the court may direct either party to pay for the costs of the notice. Cal. Rule of Court 3.766(c). While a plaintiff ordinarily bears the cost and burden of providing notice, the court may shift the costs if the defendants conduct has complicated the identification and notice process. Hypertouch, Inc. v. Superior Court, 128 Cal. App. 4th 1527, 1553 (2005)
10. Availability of Attorney’s Fees – the California high court reaffirmed that a party may be entitled to attorney’s fees where the lawsuit has been a “catalyst in motivating the defendants to provide… the relief sought,” even if the prevailing party has not yet obtained any affirmative relief in litigation.
The availability of fees bases upon a “catalyst” theory is particularly important in injunctive relief class actions, such as environmental or governmental reform cases. California has also taken a different approach to the calculation of statutory attorneys’ fees based upon the lodestar method, permitting enhancements for risk, while the federal law prohibits the use of risk multipliers.


Questions for your thoughts and responses:
What are common or general interests to meet the standard of California Code of Civil Procedure #382 as defined above?
Who qualifies and how broad can qualification be considered to meet “the existence of an ascertainable class and a well-defined community of interest among class members?”
How will plaintiffs show that class treatment would “provide substantial benefits” to both the court and the litigants?
My initial look into the success of a class action lawsuit is positive. The above questions are open for your creative ideas. Send no money. Like the mining operation, we are exploring right now.
I am certain the loss of utilizing our country’s natural resources is a loss experienced by all Americans. Whether the activity is in Tennessee, Pennsylvania, Florida Arkansas or Missouri, all are losing quality of life and suffering economic losses due to the out of control abuses in the execution of environmental laws. I want to join a class action suit but cannot be its leader.
MMM
_____________________________________________________________________________
 By Michael Miller

10/18/2012  2:10PM

Only a small number of the public have been exposed to elemental science as it relates to arsenic, mercury and the earth’s mineral composition. Most only read or hear about toxicity of arsenic and mercury. America’s tax revenue (in short supply) is regularly consumed from fear mongering. The public should be outraged by a gross infringement of morality or decency from the academic, journalistic, political and business predators that grovel in self-serving deceit about these natural elements. For years both found a medical usefulness. Maybe their use was over dosed (read in this subject about HORMESIS dosage and duration). What seems to be lacking throughout our 21st century society is common sense.

Today we posted an article in the NEWS section of this site written by Bob Shoemaker, who lives in our area. Science has disciplines or it would not be called science. Bob is in his 80’s and a person with the background, training and experience to teach us some real stuff about arsenic. I encourage you to click into the NEWS and read about arsenic.
 By martin newkom

10/04/2012  2:56PM

When my grandfather and his
brother operated the Eldorado
Mine according to the family
they used Silver Nitrate on the
separating tables to separate
the gold from the gravel. I guess
nodays that is a sure no-no.
 By Michael Miller

10/04/2012  12:08PM

Rarely have I repeated submitted a document or message on our web site. I break this after listening to the debate between two men, one of which will be our president. Both seem to realize that the American society needs regulations. I agree. Both recognized the federal regulations have gone beyond value and actually stunt improving our country and its people. I agree. What the federal EPA does or not does must stop when the action, inaction or results are politically driven. Natural resource producers exist in the infantry trenches of EPA battles. While the Sixteen to One has no impact on federal commerce, it impacts our depressed rural environment. I will venture into speculation and say that a successful Sixteen to One will positively impact California in economic ways (without hurting non-human life).

Following is an article posted in this topic on December2, 2010. I have some additional information to add after you read the article.


Toxicologist Edward Calabrese finds that what does not kill you can make you stronger.
All things are poison and nothing is without poison. It is the dose that makes a thing a poison," declared the wandering Renaissance physician-surgeon Paracelsus. University of Massachusetts toxicologist Edward Calabrese has a possible amendment to Paracelsus' dictum: Low doses of poisons may be good for you.

Calabrese speculates that evolution has given our bodies and cells the ability to repair them. Low exposures to toxins stimulate these biological repair mechanisms and lead them to fix the damage caused by the toxin—and even to repair some of the normal background damage as well. In other words, exposure to low levels of toxins provides "a very modest overcompensation to a little damage.". Hormesis is an effect where a toxic substance acts like a stimulant in small doses.

There is even a forthcoming study that shows that exposure to low levels of arsenic protects against cancer. Calabrese’s arguments are more than just a scientific curiosity. They have political relevance as well. Modern toxicology has generally assumed that there is no safe dose for carcinogens. The regulations based on this belief assume a linear dose/response relationship for toxins—that is, if a lot of something is bad for you, even a little bit is bad for you.

This faith in a linear dose/response relationship has been codified in various federal regulations such as those promulgated by the EPA. The result has been a relentless and costly effort to reduce our exposure to even the smallest quantities of allegedly toxic molecules in the hopes of reducing rates of cancer and birth defects.

"The real significance of the hormetic model in the conflict over threshold versus linear response models is of course that if hormesis could be unequivocally demonstrated as universal then it would establish a bona fide threshold for carcinogenic effects," writes Calabrese in the journal Mutation Research. "This would immediately discredit the many uses of linearity models to estimate cancer risk." In other words, it would mean that federal regulations are wasting lots of money trying to solve a non-existent problem—and even stifling possible positive effects.

Calabrese believes that is time for the EPA and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to commission the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and/or the Institute of Medicine to evaluate hormesis and its application to regulatory science. If the NAS agrees that hormesis is a universal effect, incorporating it into EPA and FDA standards would improve how cancer risk assessment is done and reduce the costs of regulation.

Who knows? Perhaps one day you'll be popping an arsenic pill to ward off skin cancer. End article.

Late September of 2011, the Santa Cruz Sentinel published an article by Marilynn Marchione, Associated Press, titled in bold print: FDA disputed TV doc’s warning on apple juice risk. Dr. Mehmet Oz said “that trace amounts of arsenic in many apple juice products pose a health concern.” Dr. Richard Besser, a pediatrician and former acting head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention scolded Oz on Thursday on ABC’s “Good Morning America” show for scaring consumers with what Besser called an “extremely irresponsible” report, like “yelling ‘FIRE!’ in a movie theater.”
“Organic arsenic is essentially harmless,” the FDA agency says, and it passes through the body quickly. The issue: arsenic is naturally present in water, air, food, and soil in organic and inorganic forms, according to the FDA. Inorganic arsenic is the type found in pesticides and consuming it at high levels or over a long period can cause concern. Kelp, a health store supplement, is high is arsenic.
“There is no evidence of any public health risk from drinking these juices. And FDA has been testing them for years.” An independent lab agreed with the FDA’s contention that the form of arsenic matters. End Sentinel article.



Californians are in a battle for scientific respect from many regulatory agencies. Air and water are the most prevalent policing agencies. I say police because they can write citations, levy penalties and establish tax schedules. And they have the power to allege criminal behavior as misdemeanors and felonies. They have done much to improve the quality of life in California. They have done much to harm the quality of life for Californians. Water agencies are doing much harm to Sixteen to One and an important Californian industry...gold mining. Californians should file a class action lawsuit against the California Regional Water Quality Control Board Central Valley Region and Does 1 through 50. It is not difficult to find applicable causes of action from its behavior. Legal relief is not merely a frivolous attempt to extort money from a hapless defendant.
Hormesis (dosage and duration/ cellular response) is a scientific theorem capable of rising from the ashes in popular recognition as did the Phoenix. Phi Alpha.
 By Rick

12/27/2011  5:50PM

Let's embrace the positive! (Yes, I know, often I write with a commentary directed toward the "crap" element trying to, well, eff with us.)

Yet, and STILL, any opportunity to embrace the positive enhances the spirit within us to succeed.

I was struck by the last positive ruling, allowing us to defend ourselves.

It is difficult to find a positive spin; a ruling that "allows us to defend ourselves" from a non-elected Board of accusers with an agenda to turn rhetoric into gold....here's my optimism:

We actually have a Judge with knowledge and justice behind the decision.

Contemplate this: in an age where appointed czars and non-elected cronies seize every chance to "rule" from above their conceited noses, we've actually just been handed a decision that ALLOWS US TO DEFEND OURSELVES.

Where and when was an un-elected, politically appointed group of snobs given their directive to RULE against our Constitutional rights?

Positive spin: TRUTH WORKS EVERY TIME.

Let's see who blinks next. We won't.
 By 2cmorau

12/24/2011  5:56AM

i just got back from doing a overnighter NF Yuba on my claim, and picked up a copy of the Mountain Messenger and learned of your fight with the envirotrash, Glad to see you have back step that green trash.
and like the other posts that water bosrd is out of control and it's not just about fish, our dairys and ranchers are being threnten by this corrupt water board as well
congrats guys
 By martin newkom

12/20/2011  10:45AM

I have a cousin who for 18 years
was a district Court Judge in
Reno Nevada. After he retired he
was a visiting judge and there-
after a trial master for a while.
He played it square and did not
go back into private practice and
hence did not subject himself to
scrutiny on issues as we have
learned about the recent jurist
who is now an attorney for a
certain large water district.
 By Rick

12/18/2011  5:41PM

Who here is aware of the ongoing Water-Board corrupt issues surrounding their salmon vs striper straw-dog demegogue and the current battle waged in the delta??

Also in Colfax??

This appointed Water-Board would be best suited being water-boarded to bring the truth forward.

There is potential energy here: parallel issues are facing many factions of the private sector in California, and main-stage is water:
A recently-former judge who just ruled on a corrupt decision regarding central valley water rights is working (as attourney!!!) for the entity in question during his ruling.

HEY WATER BOARD: you are on notice as being corrupt.
 By martin newkom

12/16/2011  9:58AM

Again, congrats.!! The water board
has had their budget trimmed and
needs the difference and they do
not care how they get it. They
also don't know that they are
dealing with very competent legal
provider and a very realistic
jurist.
 By Michael Miller

12/15/2011  3:51PM

Just received word about the lawsuit decision. The judge ruled against the water staff so the company won. Following is the notice sent to me this morning by our attorney:

“Hi Mike – I received the Court’s ruling on the summary judgment – summary judgment denied, without reaching the due process issues. Judge Kennelly apparently tried to interpret the statute in a way that avoids the constitutional challenges, by suggesting that the Water Board was required to do an analysis of the violations and penalties despite the mandatory penalty language. I will scan a copy of the decision to you, in case you haven’t received a copy yet.”

Judge Kennelly wrote a very thoughtful opinion. Instead of ruling on the due process issue we raised he recognized that the water agency staff took portions of a detailed statute to justify the merits of the lawsuit. His decision thusly avoids a constitutional challenge, one we are prepared to argue.

Now the central valley water board and the Governor have the chance to look into just how the water agency staff is using statutes and regulations to levy fines, delays and causing unnecessary expenses. The water board preempted the laws as intended by the legislature. The outcome of this failed motion goes beyond our case. A challenge to Sacramento to correct draconian decisions that have hurt California, especially in the blue collar workforce is at hand.
 By Rick

12/11/2011  4:39PM

Is it only "case law" that can be cited in appeals?

I'm not suggesting the need for an appeal, since I am a pragmatic realistic optimist with justice and reality on my side, when considering the pending decision facing our mine. BUT in the event one is needed, the testimony text below is damning to the crooks cause in any event.

The fact that such blatant hypocrisy even escapes the same entity's voices speaks volumes:

Grounds for appeal, I'd say.

And while a $3K fine is still aggregious, perhaps send the check now.

When we finally get these un-elected effers out of there, we'll find a bunch-o-gold.
 By Michael Miller

12/09/2011  12:23PM

The Grass Valley newspaper (The Union) front page article titled, “Victims or Culprits? Colfax hurt by regulation or irresponsible stewards?” contains quotes by Congressman Tom McClintock said from the House floor on December 1. The Assemblyman said, “Over the past several years, this little town has been utterly plundered by regulatory and litigatory excesses that have pushed the town to the edge of bankruptcy and ravaged families already struggling to make ends meet.” He called the practices a “unconscionable”. HELLO out there! Everyone familiar with the Sixteen to One knows this to be true. But read the following written by the Central Valley Water Board staff and presented to the full board at its December 1 public meeting. It is the staff’s exact words.

Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board
30 November, 1-2 December 2011 Board Meeting
Prosecution Team’s Response to Comments
Tentative Administrative Civil Liability Order for the City of Colfax Wastewater Treatment Plant Placer County


“The following are Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (Central Valley Water Board) Prosecution Team responses to comments submitted interested parties regarding the tentative Administrative Civil Liability Order (ACLO) for the City of Colfax Wastewater Treatment Plant. The Advisory Team extended the public comment deadline from 6 October 2011 to 13 October 2011.

“Issue No. 4: Failure to conduct receiving water monitoring or report results
Background: MMPs do not apply to the failure to conduct monitoring or to report results. These actions are considered deficient monitoring violations or deficient reporting violations and are only subject to discretionary enforcement actions. In general, when Board staff reviews monitoring reports and discovers these types of violations, it responds by issuing an NOV. The NOV will require the discharger to describe the actions it will take to stop the violations identified by staff.

“Issue No. 5: Failure to monitor the ponds
MMPs do not apply to the failure to conduct monitoring or to report results. These actions are considered deficient monitoring violations or deficient reporting violations and are only subject to discretionary enforcement actions. In general, when Board staff reviews monitoring reports and discovers these types of violations, it responded by issuing an NOV. The NOV will require the discharger to describe the actions it will take to stop the violations identified by staff.
Prosecution Team Response: Although the MRP requires that dissolved oxygen be monitored in the groundwater, the Prosecution Team will recommend that the Permitting group remove this constituent when the permit is updated in 2012. Some consultants measure dissolved oxygen while they purge a monitoring well because it is one of several parameters which can be used to determine when formation water is being recovered. It can also be used as a surrogate for petroleum hydrocarbon contamination, but that is not a concern at this facility. It is very unusual to require that dissolved oxygen be measured in the groundwater at wastewater treatment facilities, and it is not a “waste constituent” as described in the Groundwater Limitations. Prosecution staff disagree that there was any violation to report regarding dissolved oxygen.

“Issue No. 8: Failure to monitor the groundwater
Background: MMPs do not apply to the failure to conduct monitoring. These actions are considered deficient monitoring violations and are only subject to discretionary enforcement actions. In general, when Board staff reviews monitoring reports and discovers these types of violations, it responded by issuing an NOV. The NOV will require the discharger to describe the actions it will take to stop the violations identified by staff.
Prosecution Team Response: The monthly monitoring reports indicate that wells G-001 and G-002 were dry and did not have enough groundwater to sample for the above months. There is no violation if a discharger is physically unable to collect a sample.

“Issue No. 12: Additional Enforcement should be considered
Comment No. 1: The City of Colfax has committed many violations over a period of several years: however, the Central Valley Water Board has been forgiving to a fault in the face of the numerous effluent violations with the reasons given being the small size of the City and the financial hardships it faces to deal with a complex and potentially expensive situation. (SARA) The proposed waiver of penalties is inadequate and excessive (FONF).
Prosecution Team Response: The Central valley Water Board’s ultimate goal is the prosecution of water quality and beneficial uses of water of the State. To this end, the Board uses a number of regulatory approaches to ensure compliance at hundreds of wastewater treatment plants we regulate. Board staff acknowledged that the City of Colfax has had a long history of violations; however, this has also been the case for a number of other facilities because of the Board’s limited resources and need to prioritize. Prior to 2001, the Board addressed the problems at Colfax through requirement in its NPDES permits. In 2001, the Board renewed Colfax’s NPDES permit and issued a companion CDO to bring Colfax’s discharge into compliance. Subsequent CDOs issued in 2007 and 2010 were intended to keep the City under a regulatory structure to keep it on a path to compliance in light of the unique factors and circumstances that have kept the City from achieving compliance.
In 2000, the CWC was amended to include MMPs for effluent violations. The CWC also authorized the Board to require publically owned treatment works serving a small community with financial hardship to apply MMPs towards a compliance project designed to correct violations in lieu of assessing MMPs. In 2003, the Board issued an ACLO which required Colfax to spend a total of $351,000 on a compliance project in lieu of assessing MMPs. In 2008, the Board issued an ACLO for additional effluent violations and required Colfax to spend a total of $234,000 on a compliance project. Recognizing that Colfax is a small community with financial hardship, and allowing the MMPs to be applied to the compliance projects is a practical approach taken by the Board and is specifically authorized by the Legislature.
The wastewater treatment plant did not have an effluent flow meter from 1 January 2009 through 28 July 2010. Effluent flows were estimated bases on a flow meter within the treatment plant. This was a permit violation, but is not subject to MMPs. The City is now in compliance and Prosecution staff does not recommend further discretionary enforcement actions.”


I sincerely ask that you read the staff report to the same board that seeks $2.245,000 from the mining company due to its failure to file 13 reports, which by de4finition were not required according to the actual water situation on our property. We have no effluent. The water is surface or ground water. We are small and broke. We did “fail to conduct monitoring or to report results” as the staff comments about at “Issue No. 4”. Also we had serious weather related issues to even get to Kanaka Creek. What do you get from these contradictions? What else can we do to stop this regulatory and litigatory overzealous and predatory treatment?

NOTES OF IMPORTANCE from the same report:
1. Page 2. MMPs are also assessed for failure to file a monitoring report. However MMPs are not assessed if a monitoring report is submitted but is incomplete. Our reports are filed after notice of this clause.
2. Page 2. MMPs only apply to effluent limit violations of any limit defined in the NPDES permit, including surface water, groundwater, operational, or toxicity limitations. MMM declaration states that water is groundwater or surface water and nothing is added by operator.
3. Last paragraph recognizes small and financial hardship.
4. Senate Bill No 2165 February 25, 2000, Section 1(f): For purposes of this section, a single operational upset that leads to simultaneous violations of more than one pollutant parameter shall be treated as a single violation. In other words, $3,000.
 By cw3343

10/10/2011  4:08PM

Thank you for the timely updates, and all of the hard work.

Good luck to all!
 By Michael Miller

10/08/2011  2:25PM

In early 2011, the State Water Resources Control Board ("SWRCB") released three draft statewide NPDES permits for public review and comment. To say that these permits were not well received by the regulated community (i.e., small municipalities, CalTrans and industrial business owners) is an understatement. In a rare intervention by members of the state legislature into the realm of state agencies, the Senate Select Committee on California Job Creation and Retention held an informational hearing on the draft permits on October 6, 2011. The message from the hearing came across loud and clear: time for a do-over.

The State Water Board received an overwhelming number of comments, most opposing the new permits. It comes down to dollars and sense. The proposed new limits have no foundatio0n in science, would cost water districts and industrial users (which will be passed on the public). Best management practices (BMP’s) must be the guidelines for regulating water in California. Science does not support numeric limitations, especially in natural storm water runoff. Also since these limitations are artificially created years ago (without science support) the Sixteen to One must be relieved from the claims alleged in the water initiated lawsuit.

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