Viewpoint: Caruso Project Hazardous Materials Report Request Sent to Councilman Bonin

By Donna Vaccarino

(Editor’s note: The following was sent to Debbie Dyner-Harris in Councilman Mike Bonin’s Office and to the Palisades News.)

You stated at the March 23, 2017 Pacific Palisades Community Council meeting, your willingness on behalf of the council office to help with any community issues . . . “All you have to do is ask.”

So, as a resident of Pacific Palisades, I would like to ask for your help and that of Councilmember Bonin’s in retrieving a public document that by law should be easily available to the public.

I would like the Hazardous Material Reports and the Certificates of Abatement from the recent demolition of existing buildings for the [Caruso] Village Project be made public.

This is a routine request for public information regarding the discovery, abatement and handling of any hazardous material found at the above sites prior to demolition. It should be quite simple to provide the Hazardous Materials Reports and Certificates of Abatement for the public record; they are required for a demolition permit. These documents should be readily available just as the toxic soils reports for the property were made available in 2015.

Per the Letter of Determination on May 12, 2016:

“Due to the age of the buildings being demolished, toxic and/or hazardous construction materials may be locked in the structures existing on the Project Site. Exposure to such materials during demolition or construction activities could potentially be hazardous to the health of the demolition and/or construction workers, as well as area residents, employees and future occupants.

“However, these impacts can be mitigated to a less than significant level by the following measures:

“1. ASBESTOS—Prior to the issuance of any permit for the demolition or alteration of the existing structure(s), the Applicant shall provide a letter to the Department of Building and Safety from a qualified asbestos abatement consultant indicating that no Asbestos-Containing Materials (ACMs) are present in the building. If ACMs are found to be present, it will need to be abated in compliance with the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s Rule 1403 as well as all other applicable State and Federal rules and regulations.

“2. LEAD PAINT—Prior to the issuance of any permit for the demolition or alteration of the existing structures (s), a lead-based paint survey shall be performed to the written satisfaction of the Department of Building and Safety. Should lead-based materials be identified, standard handling and disposal practices shall be implemented pursuant to OSHA regulations.”

Although I have tried many times to obtain a copy of the Report from Caruso Affiliated, the Planning Department and the Department of Building and Safety, the reports were unavailable. I would appreciate if Councilmember Bonin would address this request and demand that the Hazardous Materials Report for the Village Project be released. Such documents will have to be certified as original by the project’s Environmental Consultant, Clark Seif Clark.

This is a Federal, State and CEQA requirement and a public health issue; the community has a right to see the reports and certification.

(Vaccarino is a local architect and a member of the Palisades Design Review Board.)

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