2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: 12 Dec 2003 19:32:41 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] FUDS liability?
From: Citizens for Safe Water Around Badger <cswab@merr.com>


CSWAB recently requested that the Wisconsin Department of Natural
Resources (WDNR) review the data from the formerly used defense sites
(FUDS) located along the east/southeast side of the Badger Army
Ammunition Plant. The report titled "Badger Army Ammunition Plant
(Formerly Used Defense Site), Sauk County, Wisconsin; Contamination
Investigation, Final Report” was prepared by the U .S. Army Corps of
Engineers Buffalo District, Buffalo, New York, September 1994.

The report summarized the results of soil, groundwater and surface water
sampling that was completed on these four FUDS.  At the time the report
was published, the WDNR, U.S. EPA, and Wisconsin Division of Health all
issued letters sharply criticizing the report because the study failed
to meet all standard protocol for quality control/quality assurance. 
Since then, CSWAB has asked for additional data collection that would
meet QA/QC.  The Army’s recent request to close these sites prompted
CSWAB to again raise the issue of the validity of conclusions based on
questionable data.

The WDNR agreed only to review existing data and in a November 17 letter
to CSWAB concluded that “there is no reason for these sites to undergo
further investigation.  The data indicate background levels of metals in
soil and groundwater. No significant volatile organic compounds were
found. The concentration levels aren't high enough to warrant additional
investigations at these sites. I see no reason to send the current
property owner a responsible party letter requiring them to complete an

In this case, the State of Wisconsin has concluded that the CURRENT
OWNERS (not the military) are responsible for any further investigation
and presumably remediation of contamination found during the original
FUDS investigation by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers because “after
all, they've owned it for more than 50 years” (per telephone
conversation with WDNR staff, November 2003).   


What are other communities’ experiences in this regard?  

Does anyone have an example of an owner of a FUDS property that has been
cited by regulators as a responsible party subsequent to a FUDS
investigation by the military?  If so, has such a scenario ever gone to court?


Laura Olah, Executive Director
Citizens for Safe Water Around Badger
E12629 Weigands Bay S
Merrimac, WI 53561
phone: (608)643-3124
fax: (608)643-0005
email: info@cswab.org
website: www.cswab.org

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