SBC To Probe Chino Airport Contamination From CIM

The state of California and its Department of Corrections have given the county permission to access  Chino Prison’s grounds in order to carry out the remediation of  groundwater contamination originating at Chino Airport.
On October 31, 1990 the California Regional Water Quality Control Board issued a clean-up and abatement order to the county of San Bernardino for suspected contamination of groundwater underneath Chino Airport. The groundwater is suspected to have been contaminated due to past usage of solvents, in particular, trichloroethylene and  perchloroethylene on the airport property.
According to James E. Jenkins, the director of the county department of airports, “The county has complied with and continues to comply with this order by conducting activities at the airport to identify all potential sources of contamination; characterize identified source areas; remediate discovered soil; characterize and identify the lateral and vertical extent of ground water contamination; monitor ground water contamination; and mitigate identified ground water contamination at the Chino Airport located at 7000 Merrill Avenue, Chino. The county received an updated clean-up and abatement order from the water board in June 2008. This order required the county to conduct investigation, containment and mitigation of volatile organic compounds in groundwater emanating from the Chino Airport. As part of this work, the county requires access to certain portions of the state’s property.”
This week, upon Jenkins’ recommendation, the county board of supervisors approved the form of a right-of-entry permit agreement between the county and the state of California, acting through its department of general services, for access to real property located at the California Institution for Men in Chino to facilitate the county’s continued compliance with the clean-up and abatement order.
“Execution of this right-of-entry permit agreement will facilitate the county’s continued groundwater characterization and investigation of the extent of the plume at the Chino Airport as referenced in the California Regional Water Quality Control Board Clean-up and Abatement Order Nos. 90-134 and R8-2008-0064,” Jenkins told the board of supervisors. “Test holes will be drilled on property owned by the Department of Corrections at the California Institute for Men in Chino, which is in close proximity to the Chino Airport, and water samples will be extracted for further analysis. The state’s permission to access the property terminates upon the earlier of the county’s completion of its work, termination by the state, or on October 18, 2013. The department of airports and the county’s consultant (TetraTech) are prepared to commence this work and to complete it within this time frame.”
Jenkins continued, “This action is time sensitive in that the agreement requires the Department of County Airports to provide the state with a 7 day written notice prior to entry on the property, with completion of its investigation work prior to October 18, 2013.”
Majestic Realty Company has entered into a 60-year lease for 150 acres of unused state-owned land near the Chino Institution for Men and south of the former Herman G. Stark Youth Correctional Facility and west of Euclid Avenue  on which it will initiate develop of the  property for industrial use on October 21, 2013.
“The [Majestic Realty] construction will begin with substantial excavation s and grading (earthwork),” Jenkins said. “Once the earthwork commences, the county’s access to the site will terminate, precluding any further site investigation. The county must complete this site investigation pursuant to the cleanup and abatement orders issued by the Regional Water Quality Control Board and the approved work plan.”

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