Left Hand Watershed Task Force Update
The following information was provided by Mark Gershman, an area resident that is a member of the Task force. The Task force was formed in response to the mining pollution issues that impact both Jamestown and Ward water supplies, as well as downstream users, including the Left Hand Water District.
The Left Hand Watershed includes: Little James Creek and James Creek, which run through Jamestown, and Left Hand Creek which runs through Ward. James Creek meets Left Hand Creek approximately three miles below the town of Jamestown. The Left Hand Water District treatment plant is approximately six miles downstream from the confluence of James Creek and Left Hand Creek. There are approximately 14,000 downstream drinking water users served by the Left Hand Water District.
There are several mines in the vicinity of Jamestown and Ward that are impacting the water quality of Little James, James and Left Hand Creeks. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ranked the Left Hand Watershed on their hazard ranking system based upon limited assessment data, and sites within the Left Hand Watershed have scored high enough to propose a National Priorities Listing that could lead to Superfund designation.
The communities of Jamestown and Ward have requested a delay in listing and have asked Boulder County to form a task force to address some of the unresolved concerns. A great deal of misinformation is being circulated about the available data, and there seems to be a lack of information available to the community. The towns of Jamestown and Ward have asked that a task force be formed to address these concerns and look at options for cleanup.
Purposes and Duties
The task force shall act under the authority of the Boulder County Board of Health to assess existing environmental and health data related to the Left Hand Watershed. Based upon the assessment, the task force will determine if a cleanup action is necessary, evaluate cleanup options, and recommend a preferred cleanup option to the Boulder County Board of Health.
The task force will also collect and disseminate to all stakeholders, any pertinent information related to the watershed. The task force shall meet regularly two times per month, or more as deemed necessary, for the term of the task force. The term is from August 1 through November 1, 2001. All meetings will be publicly advertised, and each meeting shall include a public comment period of not less than 15 minutes.
Task Force Members include Sarah DiGiacomo (future generations-mountain resident); Steve Edelstein (Jamestown resident); Ken Fucik (technical expert); Mark Gershman (future generations-plains resident); Pete Gleichman (Ward resident); Kathy Peterson (Left Hand Water District); and Sue Schauffler (technical expert/Rowena resident).
Meetings are held at 6:30 PM, locations TBD. The Sept. 13 meeting was held at the offices of the Left Hand Water District , 6800 Nimbus Road. Future meeting dates are as follows: September 27, October 16 and 30, and November 6 and 8.
Currently the web page, which has all this information and a bit more, is at http://www.users.qwest.net/~mdg/lh/framemain.htm Interested parties can review the agendas and minutes of meetings. The website will probably be moved sometime soon, but a link redirecting people to the new location will be provided.