Winter of 2019
A video short of heavy commercial operations along Colorado State Highway 93 (CO-93) and much of the western border of the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge in early February 2019.
Pat Mellen Law LLC
for further information, contact:
Attorney Pat Mellen (720) 593-3593
or Bob Schaeffer (239) 395-6773
for release at 11:30am MST, Thursday, January 10, 2019
LEGAL PETITION FILED TO UNSEAL ROCKY FLATS GRAND JURY RECORDS; DOCUMENTS DESCRIBING BURIED CONTAMINATION
MAY HELP RESOLVE CURRENT PUBLIC POLICY DEBATES
Leaders of Rocky Flats community groups filed a legal Petition in U.S. District Court today calling on the government to unseal records from the 1989 -1992 Special Federal Grand Jury investigation into criminal actions at the former Denver-area nuclear weapons plant. The petitioners argue that the documents may provide evidence of unreported and unaddressed residual plutonium contamination and other ongoing environmental dangers at Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge and the adjoining Superfund site. They say this information is critical to resolving policy controversies, such as construction of the Rocky Flats Refuge trails and visitor center, Jefferson Parkway, Rocky Mountain Greenway, and fracking permits.
According to the petition, “The documents gathered by the Grand Jury and now under seal are a unique resource that provides the detailed evidence of whether specific locations or hot spots of unremediated or undiscovered hazardous substances must outweigh a site-wide ‘safe’ determination made for other purposes. While theoretically statistically defensible, that site-wide “safe” determination will be small comfort should an unfortunate construction worker put a backhoe shovel into a buried 55-gallon barrel of plutonium-laced transuranic waste that eluded the collection of the five (5) samples in that 30-acre quadrant.”
The Grand Jury records, sealed by federal court rules, were gathered as part of an investigation into Rocky Flat’s managing contractor Rockwell International. Rockwell pled guilty to ten federal environmental law violations and eventually paid a $18.5 million fine. Grand Jury records can be unsealed when the information is relevant to pending or potential litigation.
Jon Lipsky, the former Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent who led the raid that shut down Rocky Flats for environmental crimes explained, “The documents could assist Rocky Flats nuclear workers with their unique compensation claims and the concerns of residents living downwind of Rocky Flats.”
Environmental attorney Pat Mellen, who represents the petitioners, added, “The Grand Jury documents offer a unique opportunity to evaluate the cleanup and bridge the gap between concerned community groups and advocates for aggressive economic development. We look forward to ending the current standoff over Rocky Flats’ future and moving this conversation forward in a more productive, evidence-driven way.”
Petitioners include: Alliance of Nuclear Workers Advocacy Groups, Rocky Flats Downwinders, Candelas Glows/Rocky Flats Glows, Environmental Information Network, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association, Rocky Flats Right to Know and Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center.
Click to read the Petition for Disclosure
Click to read Exhibit 1 – Table of Disposal Sites
Click to read Exhibit 2 – Grand Jury Subpoenas
Fall of 2018
By November 15, 2018 Highlands Natural Resources Corporation withdrew all its Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) spacing and permit applications associated with Rocky Flats, Standley Lake and the dog park on 5,200 acres of leasehold in Jefferson County, as reported by the Patch news service. However the oil and gas leases remain viable necessitating vigilance regarding Round 2. The Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge and offsite lands were not subjected to remediation and the properties were delisted by the US EPA in 2007.
Round 2 because Scott Surovchak, US DOE Legacy Management Manager for Rocky Flats, stated on KDVR camera that fracking under Rocky Flats would be “safe.”
The Rocky Flats Superfund site, approximately 1300 acres in the middle of the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge, was not completely remediated. Undocumented waste burial sites contaminated with radiation and certain contaminated infrastructure were not remediated and left in place. Please note the following two (2) US DOE diagrams of 2013:
Rocky Flats Site Operations Guide – Subsurface Features – Pits, Trenches and Closed Landfills.
Rocky Flats Site Operations Guide – Subsurface Features Remaining Infrastructure.
Rocky Flats Superfund site and Refuge fracking update (virtual view of the proposed 31 horizontal wells):
SHAKE – RATTLE – ROLL the Original Landfill (OLF), among other contaminants , at Rocky Flats into Woman Creek?
On October 12, 2018 Highlands Natural Resources Corp., applied for up to 31 horizontal wells in excess of 2500 feet in depth at the Rocky Flats Superfund site and Refuge. The below image was generated from the COGCC web site at https://cogccmap.state.co.us/cogcc_gis_online/.
The blue lines represent the proposed horizontal (fracking) wells. The Rocky Flats Superfund site monochrome footprint is in the middle of the image along with remaining contaminated landfills, pits, trenches and unseen subsurface infrastructure (as much as 80 feet below the surface).
On Sunday, November 4, 2018 NBC NIghtly News reported on the pending lawsuits at the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant. The report includes interviews with Elizabeth Panzer and Dr. Mark Johnson, MD, MPH.
for Immediate Release: 10/31/2018
ROCKY FLATS SUPERFUND SITE AND STANDLEY LAKE ARE UNDER CONSIDERATION FOR FRACKING
Contact: Gina Hardin, President, 350 Colorado, email@example.com (303) 525-3076
Denver, Colorado – On Friday, interested parties received a copy of an Application to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC), by an English and Scottish Company, Highlands Natural Resources Corporation, to horizontally drill four sections of the former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, including the superfund site where the plutonium triggers were manufactured. The Application requests authority to drill four pads and up to 31 wells in unspecified locations throughout the four sections. (Attachment 1, Application, including map). The 1989 FBI raid of this site was the first time in history that the FBI has raided another federal agency. Some 5000 barrels of plutonium contaminated oil were stored out in the open, unprotected, corroding and leaking into the soil.
According to a Jefferson County map dated 10/30/2018, it is now clear that there are applications pending to frack the whole of Rocky Flats, as well as two sections overlying Standley Lake, and two sections connecting the two locations. (Attachment 2, Jefferson County map, dated 10/30/2018 & Attachment 3, same map but with explanations inserted by author). The map indicates that 109 wells on 16 pads have been applied for. The COGCC has never, in its history, denied a permit. These areas are adjacent to numerous West Metro communities, including Superior, Broomfield, Westminster and Arvada. There has been on-going concern from these communities that any activities that could release radioactive particles in the superfund site and other areas in Rocky Flats could endanger anyone who is exposed to such.
Now, the surrounding communities, will be exposed to increased risk of radioactive exposure and contamination from fracking, and potential oil and gas explosions in these areas, as well as the numerous health, environmental and safety risks associated with fracking that that have been well documented by scientists and health professionals. See e.g., Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking, https://www.psr.org/blog/resource/compendium-of-scientific-medical-and-media-findings-demonstrating-risks-and-harms-of-fracking/ (the Nobel Prize winning Physicians for Social Responsibility’s March 2018 update of the rapidly expanding evidence indicating harm to health from fracking and methane infrastructure).
Gina Hardin, President of non-profit 350 Colorado, warns that this is clear evidence that the oil and gas industry is completely unwilling to regulate itself. It will aggressively seek profit like an amoral machine, destroying without conscience, anyone and anything in its path. Coloradans must vote and take other actions with the knowledge that they, and their loved ones, may be next.
for immediate release, Monday, September 24, 2018
ROCKY FLATS REFUGE PLAINTIFFS SEEK ADDITIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS;
CLAIM FEDS RELIED ON OLD DATA, IGNORED EROSION AND PLUTONIUM
IN DECIDING TO OPEN PUBLIC TRAILS; JUDGE’S RULING EXPECTED SOON
In a final reply brief filed in U.S. District Court, organizations seeking to keep the public from walking and riding on trails at the Rocky Flats Wildlife Refuge claim that the federal government failed to adhere to requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) in opening the site. Plaintiffs charge that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) did not analyze the impact of opening trails through the previously off-limits “Wind-Blown” area, where there may be residual Plutonium or the use of the “Section 16 parcel,” which had not been acquired at the time of the most recent environmental review.
The brief cites federal regulations requiring supplemental analyses, if an agency “makes substantial changes in the proposed action that are relevant to environmental concerns,” or if “significant new circumstances or information relevant to environmental concerns and bearing on the proposed action or its impacts” arise. Among specific legal claims in the plaintiffs’ brief:
– The most recent Environmental Impact Statement, completed in 2004, is out of date
– No analysis of the location of trails on Section 16, which includes 617 acres, was ever done
– The impact of erosion from heavy rain-induced flooding in September 2013 was never examined
– Less than one surface soil sample per 6.5 acres was tested for residual plutonium contamination
U.S. District Court Judge Philip A. Brimmer is expected to issue a ruling in the near future.
Rocky Flats manufactured triggers for nuclear weapons from plutonium, a highly radioactive, long-lived metal. The Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the site for environmental violations in 1989, and it never reopened. Plaintiffs in the suit include: Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows/Rocky Flats Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association and Environmental Information Network. They are represented by the Law Offices of Randall M. Weiner.
Summer of 2018
Law Offices of Randall M. Weiner, P.C.
3100 Arapahoe Avenue, Suite 202
Boulder, CO 80303
for further information, contact:
Annmarie Cording/Randall Weiner 303 440-3321
or Bob Schaeffer 239 395-6773
for immediate release, Tuesday, September 4, 2018
NEW TRAIL-HEAD SIGN AT ROCKY FLATS REFUGE FAILS TO INCLUDE
LEGALLY MANDATED WARNING LANGUAGE;
REQUIRED TERMS “PLUTONIUM,” “DANGEROUS” AND “ACCIDENTS” OMITTED;
ADVOCATES DEMAND EXPLANATION FROM U.S. FISH & WILDLIFE SERVICE
A new sign erected at a Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge trail head after advocates complained about the absence of mandatory warning notices fails to comply with language required under the site’s Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP). A letter from the attorneys representing groups seeking to stop the United States Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) from opening trails and a visitors’ center at the former plutonium production facility called for the agency to heed its legal obligations for public notice.
The required CCP language for trail-head signs states, for example, “Weapon components production at the plant involved plutonium and hazardous materials. The work was dangerous and secret. Over the course of decades, there were accidents. Some accidents and some of the waste handling practices of the early decades resulted in releases of plutonium and other contaminants into the environment.”
However, the newly posted sign at the Woman Creek Loop trail head fails to even mention the terms “plutonium,” “hazardous materials,” “dangerous,” “accidents,” or “waste handling.”
The letter to FWS concludes, “At the very least, visitors to the Refuge have the right and expectation to an accurate summary of Rocky Flats history. . . Please explain immediately the authority upon which FWS relies for disregarding the publicly vetted language that was approved in 2007.”
Rocky Flats manufactured plutonium triggers for nuclear weapons. The Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the site for environmental violations in 1989, and it never reopened. Local groups are suing FWS claiming that the government failed to follow environmental requirements in deciding to open the site to the public. Plaintiffs in the suit include: Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association and Environmental Information Network. They are represented by Boulder environmental attorney Randall Weiner.
ROCKY FLATS REFUGE HAS FAILED TO POST REQUIRED WARNING SIGNS
AT TRAILHEAD WHERE PUBLIC CAN ACCESS SITE;
ADVOCATES AND ATTORNEYS CITE LEGAL VIOLATIONS
IN CALL FOR KEEPING SITE CLOSED
In a letter to Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge Manager David Lucas, a lawyer for groups seeking to keep trails and a visitors’ center at the site from opening to the public charged that at least one access point lacks legally required warning signs. Boulder environmental attorney Randall Weiner wrote, “The Woman Creek Loop Trail trailhead . . . a Refuge access point on the southern boundary . . . appears to be open to public use . . . but it omits the informational signage . . . related to the history of the site or residual contamination.” Specific language addressing those concerns is included in the Refuge’s final Comprehensive Conservation Plan.
The letter demanded that any open Refuge trailheads “be closed forthwith” until the legally required warning signs are posted.
Alesya Casse, co-founder of the group Candelas Glows, explained, “The federal government must post the required signs that address the area’s radioactive history. That information is necessary to warn potential visitors about the risk of exposure to plutonium and other contaminants. It is one of the only tools we have to protect our health and that of the community.”
The letter to Refuge Manager Lucas concludes, “Your agency’s failure to comply with the Signage Plan and NEPA [National Environmental Policy Act] demonstrates your continuing inattention to legal requirements regarding the Refuge, and a carelessness that does the public a grave disservice.”
Rocky Flats manufactured plutonium triggers for nuclear weapons. In 1989, the Federal Bureau of Investigation raided the site for environmental violations, and the plant never reopened. Several local groups are suing USFWS claiming that the government failed to follow environmental requirements in deciding to open the site to the public. Plaintiffs in the suit include: Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association and Environmental Information Network.
The July 17, 2018 Hearing transcript is available by clicking the link. (The transcript headers are not accurate). A list of the witnesses and page numbers: John W. Barton pages 28-43; Professor Emeritus Harvey Nichols pages 43-60; Professor Emeritus Michael E. Ketterer pages 61-74; Professor Timothy Mousseau pages 75-86; Elizabeth Panzer pages 89-93; Jon Lipsky pages 93-102; Randall Stafford pages 102-113; David Lucas, USFWS, pages 113-145.
ROCKY FLATS REFUGE CHALLENGERS PRESS FOR SPEEDY REVIEW
AFTER FEDERAL JUDGE DECLINES TO BLOCK SEPTEMBER OPENING
OF TRAILS, VISITORS CENTER NEXT TO SUPERFUND SITE
Citizen groups seeking to stop the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from opening trails and a visitor center on potentially contaminated property surrounding the former Rocky Flats plutonium bomb manufacturing plant today are pressing for an expedited review of the merits of their legal challenge. Today, a federal judge in Denver, Colorado declined to issue a preliminary injunction that would have blocked a scheduled September 15 Rocky Flats Wildlife Refuge opening date.
Attorney Randall Weiner, who represents the plaintiff groups, explained, “Though the judge ruled that we did not reach the high standard necessary to win a preliminary injunction, he previously expedited the rest of the lawsuit so that he can reach a final decision quickly. Our case will clearly demonstrate that the government does not have an up-to-date assessment of risks to the environment and human health from allowing unlimited public visits to the Refuge.”
In his ruling, the judge acknowledged plaintiffs’ concerns about “the very small, but nonetheless non-zero, risk resulting from exposure to even minute quantities of radioactive materials” and trail use will produce some additional windblown dust.”
The Court had previously expedited the case schedule so that Plaintiffs opening brief on the main part of the case is due next week, on August 17 with a government response on September 7. With the Refuge scheduled to open on September 15, “Plaintiffs hope to promptly show the Court that the federal government violated the laws it was required to follow, and thus convince the Judge to close the Refuge soon after it opens,” Weiner concluded.
Rocky Flats manufactured plutonium triggers for nuclear weapons for several decades. In 1989, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, led by Special Agent Jon Lipsky, raided the site for environmental violations, and the plant never reopened. Parts of Rocky Flats remain on the Superfund list of the nation’s most contaminated sites. According to Lipsky, “Federal actions at Rocky Flats have been based on dangerously flawed science. Opening the site to public access ignores large amounts of evidence. We should all be thankful that community groups are continuing to challenge the poor government decisions.”
Plaintiffs in the current suit include: Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association and Environmental Information Network.
Judge Brimmer’s Order denying Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction.
Free Kindle version of “The Ambushed Grand Jury” non-profit and non-fiction book August 1-5, 2018.
On July 17, 2018 former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant Radiological Control Technician (RCT) John Barton testified during the Irreperable Harm Hearing about the following depicted 55-gallon barrel:
What colors do you see on the depicted 55-gallon barrel? The State of Colorado removed the drum and USFWS did NOT test for radionuclides.
The USFWS photo of the 55-gallon barrel in the State Clay Mine pond (Southwest corner of the Refuge) is from August 2011 during the Level I Survey acquisition of Section 16 for the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. USFWS intends to place the Rocky Mountain Greenway trail next to the State Clay Mine for visitors to “enjoy” the adjacent Caprock Mine.
Bruce Finley, Denver Post report about Hearing testimony concerning the drum at https://www.denverpost.com/2018/07/17/rocky-flats-opening/.
The full USFWS Section 16 Level I report was not publicly available until the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center and 4 other community organizations sued USFWS, et al, more at https://rockyflatsambushedgrandjury.com/…/Ex-11-20110811-Se…. Hearing witness responses available by – Contact Us.
In response to Judge Brimmer’s Order of July 12, 2018, Attorney Randall Weiner, who represents plaintiffs, explained, “Our eight remaining witnesses – including experts on residual contamination, site sampling, and wind-borne transport of plutonium – will be addressing the legal standard of ‘irreparable harm’ needed for an injunction.”
On July 10, 2018 the Town of Superior, Colorado filed its Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief in US District of Colorado Court v. US Fish and Wildlife Service, Greg Sheehan and David Lucas.
On June 28, 2018: FEDS TRY TO BAR EXPERT WITNESS TESTIMONY AT JULY 17 ROCKY FLATS PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION HEARING; PLAINTIFFS PRESS FOR OPPORTUNITY TO DEMONSTRATE HARMS IF WILDLIFE REFUGE OPENED TO PUBLIC. Read the the Law Offices of Randall Weiner press release and Fed Motion In Limine at https://rockyflatsambushedgrandjury.com/to-block-imminent-construction-and-opening-of-rocky-flats-trails/.
On June 26, 2018 Federal Defendants’ Notice of Lodging U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services’ Administrative Record was filed. Details in the Notice explain further Federal Defendants’ actions. Click to read the document.
The Plaintiffs in re: Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, et al, Plaintiffs, v. US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Department of Transportation, et al, Defendants filed their Reply in Support of Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction.
- A full-day hearing on Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction is set for July 17, 2018 at 9:00 a.m., in Courtroom A 701 before Judge Philip A. Brimmer.
- Click to read further details including Exhibits and Declarations in this important legal case.
Spring of 2018
With the filing of the Motion for Preliminary Injunction in re: Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, et al, Plaintiffs, v. US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Department of Transportation, et al, Defendants; Dr. Mark B. Johnson, MD, MPH, and Executive Director, Jefferson County Public Health contributed his Declaration for the Plaintiffs. Dr. Johnson is not a Plaintiff in this action however he documented a “considered position on the opening of Rocky Flats for public trails and a visitor center.” The media attention has been more than informative: Former Rocky Flats workers reunite after federal court motion filed to stop wildlife refuge opening; The Rocky Flats scare brigade gains a new general; Official Blasts Critic of Nuclear Plant Cleanup; Nothing but flowers? Debate rages as Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge prepares to open; After decades of secrets, Rocky Flats still gives me pause; Spence Havlick: Rocky Flats: Superfund site to super contentious refuge; and, Rocky Flats: The refuge with a radioactive past.
- On June 3, 2018 David Lucas, US Fish and Wildlife Service and individual federal defendant, allegedly sent an email criticizing Dr. Mark B. Johnson. On June 19, 2018 Mickey Harlow, Jon Lipsky, Paula Elofson-Guardine, Susan Elofson-Hurst, Randy Stafford and Professor Emeritus Michael Ketterer Ph.D., provided public comments supporting Dr. Mark B. Johnson, MD, MPH and Jeffco Executive Health Director and to keep the Rocky Flats Refuge closed to human access before the Jefferson County, Colorado Commissioners. Jeffco Open Space Director Tom Hoby, who was called on the carpet, tried to provide a supporting role. The meeting video was published on June 20, 2018, Public Comment begins at the 37:55 time mark of the below Jefferson County Commissioners’ Meeting video link: http://jeffersonco.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=5&clip_id=2538
Rocky Flats: Uncovering the Cover Up” is a short video by five (5) young ladies attending Boulder High School. Under the National History Day category of Senior Group Category; Eva, Jordan, Leah, Maddie and Presley placed first in Colorado.
“On the Tracks at Rocky Flats” a short video by Joe Daniel, Directed by Erik Sween:
On June 20, 2018 US District Court Judge Philip A. Brimmer issued his Minute Order: “A full-day hearing on Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction  is set for July 17, 2018 at 9:00 a.m. in Courtroom A 701 before Judge Philip A. Brimmer. Any motions in limine or motions to strike shall be filed on or before June 28, 2018; responses shall be filed on or before July 6, 2018. By Judge Philip A. Brimmer on 6/20/18. Text Only Entry (pabsec). The Plainfiffs’ Witness list is at Plaintiffs Witness list filed on June 15, 2018 and the Government Defendants’ Witness List is at Government Defendants’ Witness List filed on June 19, 2018
On June 11, 2018 Defendants’ US Fish and Wildlife Service filed their Federal Defendants Opposition to Plaintiffs Motion for Preliminary Injunction in Denver US District Court case 1:18-cv-01017-PAB.
On May 31, 2018 Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association, and Environmental Information Network, through their attorneys Randall Weiner, Annmarie Cording, Dana Stotsky and Andrew Ogen, filed “Plaintiff’s Motion for and Memorandum in Support of Preliminary Injunction” regarding the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. The Complaint for this case was filed on May 1, 2018 and available on this page.
On April 26, 2018 Denver Public Schools ratified its “Ban of Denver Public Schools Sponsored Field Trips to the Former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Manufacturing Facility Site:”
On May 1, 2018 the Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center, Candelas Glows, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Neighborhood Association, and Environmental Information Network, through their attorneys Randall Weiner and Dana Stotsky filed a federal civil action against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Secretary Ryan Zinke, Director Greg Sheehan and Project Manager David Lucas for failing to follow NEPA. Complaint – 20180501 RMPJC v USFWS.
Denver Public Schools bans school field trips to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. The Denver Post, John Aguilar reported on April 29, 2018: “Nearly 300,000 Colorado public school students now barred from making field trips to Rocky Flats. Denver Public Schools latest, and biggest, district to ban school visits to soon-to-open wildlife refuge.” Seven Colorado school districts have decided to ban school field trips to Rocky Flats!
“The Cover-Up of Rocky Flats Crimes” on Saturday, April 28th from 2-3p with Jon Lipsky, FBI, Retired; and, the Honorable Wes McKinley, Foreman of the Rocky Flats Special Federal Grand Jury 89-2.
On April 2, 2018 Ms. Pat Mellen, Esquire, of Pat Mellen Law LLC, presented her “Rocky Flats: Concerns & Challenges” rebuttal before the Rocky Flats Stewardship Council (RFSC) in rebuttal to the February 5, 2018 Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) presentation “Rocky Flats: Myths & Misunderstandings” before the RFSC. This important, insightful and thought-provoking linked video presentation is as follows:
Rocky Flats: Uncovering the Coverup – by Jordan Appel, Presley Church, Madison Fischer, Eva Murdock and Leah Yonemoto-Weston. Jordan, Presley, Madison, Eva and Leah attend Boulder Valley High School and are the 2018 State Qualifiers for National History Day in Colorado. These young ladies placed first under the Senior Group Documentary Category with a trajectory that includes National History Day. The National History Day 2017-2018 Theme: Conflict and Compromise in History.
On March 23, 2018 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service provided the following “Proposed Amenities-Trails” map – “The trail system at Rocky Flats NWR will be be opened to public use in Summer 2018.” USFWS Public Engagement Summary.
In November 2017 the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Lands Highway Division in concert with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rendered a Site Map for the Rocky Mountain Greenway (RMG) Trails through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Overlay Refuge (ROFL). The latest evolution of ROFL trails is depicted as follows:
Winter of 2018
On February 8, 2018 Jason E. Glass, Ed.D – Superintendent & Chief Learner, Jeffco Public Schools (JPS), Jefferson County, Colorado directed staff to schedule no visits to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge without requesting prior approval from his office. This campaign involves Keep Kids off Rocky Flats, Rocky Flats Right to Know, Rocky Flats Technical Group and Rocky Flats Nuclear Guardianship.
Fall of 2017
On December 6, 2017 Adams 12 Superintendent announced that he will make a policy to not allow school field trips to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On October 10, 2017 Adams County School District 14 banned school-sponsored field trips to the former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Manufacturing facility site:
On September 29, 2017 Veronica Gleaton, Executive Assistant to the Westminster Board of Education & Superintendent confirmed that Dr. Pamela Swanson, Superintendent, committed to not allow school field trips to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On September 29, 2107 USDC Judge Christine M. Arguello issued her ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFFS’ MOTIONS FOR RECONSIDERATION AND LEAVE TO AMEND AND GRANTING DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO DISMISS.
As of September 28, 2017 the Kindle Edition of The Ambushed Grand Jury non-fiction and non-profit book is available! Free PDF version THE AMBUSHED GRAND JURY non-fiction and non-profit book is available by clicking the embedded link.
Summer of 2017
On September 5, 2017 USDC Judge Christine M. Arguello granted Plaintiffs’ Motion for Leave to file Surreply and further Ordered that Plaintiffs’ Surreply is accepted by the Court. The Court ordered for Plaintiffs’ Surreply to be filed with the Court.
On August 30, 2017 Plaintiffs’ Surreply was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado regarding the Federal Defendants’ Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction.
On August 22, 2017 Plaintiffs filed their Second Amended Complaint For Declaratory and Injunctive Relief with the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado.
On August 17, 2017 Kyra Buckley, KUNC Greeley, Colorado aired “Proposed Rocky Flats Visitor’s Center Renews Debate Over What to do with former Nuclear Site.”
On August 14, 2017 Plaintiffs suing US FWS at the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge filed their – Plaintiffs’ Response in Opposition to Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction.
On August 14, 2017 John Aguilar, The Denver Post, published “Long-stalled 470 beltway hits another snag, as FAA says northwest link would “introduce new safety risks.”
On August 2, 2017 Plaintiffs suing US FWS at the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge filed their Reply to Defendants’ Opposition to Plaintiffs’ Motion for Reconsideration of Preliminary Injunction.
On July 13, 2017 John Aguilar, The Denver Post, published “Jeffco Officials dig in their heels against proposed prairie dog relocation at Rocky Flats.”
On July 12, 2017 Jeff Todd and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired “Former Rocky Flats Neighbors Share Health Horror Stories.”
On July 12, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired “Refuge Would Allow Visitors on Rocky Flats Site, But ‘Donut Hole’ To Remain Restricted.”
On July 11, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired “Confidentiality Agreements Broken in Attempt to Warn About Rocky Flats.”
On July 10, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired “Building a Community in Colorado’s Nuclear Shadow.”
On July 10, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired “Rocky Flats: Colorado’s Nuclear Shadow.”
On July 10, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver aired David Wood, Ph.D., and living at Candelas. Dr. Wood’s reliance on a gamma reader and sampling imported mulch gave him a comfort zone from plutonium239.
On July 9, 2017 Rick Sallinger and KCNC CBS4 Denver promo-video for “Rocky Flats: Colorado’s Nuclear Shadow.” Expect it to be a series of nightly investigative journalism.
On July 7, 2017 John Fryar, Daily Camera, published his story “Proposal to move prairie dogs from Longmont to Rocky Flats stirs opposition.”
On July 6, 2017 Karen Morfitt, KCNC CBS4 Denver aired her piece “Prairie Dogs To Be Relocated to Former Nuclear Weapons Facility.”
On July 6, 2017 Anica Padilla and Tammy Vigil, KDVR Fox31 Denver reporters, published their coverage of “Activists say moving prairie dogs to Rocky Flats could unearth plutonium.”
On July 6, 2017 Plaintiffs suing US FWS at Rocky Flats sent a letter to the DOJ attorney concerning FWS intentions to import prairie dogs from Longmont, Colorado to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On June 29, 2017 Plaintiffs (local Denver citizens’ group) filed their Motion for Reconsideration of Preliminary Injunction, and in the Alternative, Permission to Appeal a Controlling Question of Law Inherent in the Court’s Order with the Court.
Josh Schlossberg and the Boulder Weekly published their Breach of Trust? – Rocky Flats dam removal dredges up contamination concerns article on June 29, 2017. The U.S. Department of Energy has scheduled the breach of the terminal ponds on North Walnut Creek, South Walnut Creek and Woman Creek as early as 2018.
Ryan Grenoble, Huffington Post, article “Rocky Flats Made Nukes. Then It Made a Mess. Now It’s About to Become a Public Park” on June 21, 2017.
Spring of 2017
On June 20, 2017 U.S. District Judge Christine Arguello ruled that the Preliminary Injunction was “premature.” Please see John Aquilar’s Denver Post article.
On May 31, 2017 local citizens filed a Motion for Preliminary Injunction with a federal Denver court to halt the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from proceeding with construction of their proposed trails, visitor center and guided tours at the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On May 17, 2017 several Denver area local community groups filed a federal civil lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service concerning proposed Multi-Use Trails and a visitor center at the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On May 10, 2017 St. Vrain Valley School Board announced the decision of the school district to ban school-sponsored field trips to the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. The announcement by President Robert J. Smith begins at about the 2:00 minute mark of the archived video.
Josh Schlossberg and the Boulder Weekly published their Buried in the past? – Health concerns resurface with public opening of Rocky Flats Wildlife Refuge – on May 11, 2017. The article mentions the March 14, 2017 Boulder Valley School District Resolution No. 17-07 “Ban of BVSD School Sponsored Field Trips to the former Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Manufacturing Facility. A copy of the signed version below:
Winter of 2017
KGNU, independent community radio, Boulder published “Continued Opposition to the Rocky Flats Wildlife Refuge.” Maeve Conran interviewed Bonnie Graham-Reed, Marian Dancing Water Whitney and Jon Lipsky in anticipation of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Rocky Flats Sharing Session #3 on February 22, 2017. Bonnie and Marian promote Rocky Flats Right to Know to keep kids off Rocky Flats and advocate permanent signage at Rocky Flats. Jon is a former FBI Agent who led the raid at the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, Golden, Colorado on June 6, 1989 and a federal court subject matter expert witness for the Plaintiffs in the recently settled ($375 million) adjacent property suit. The KGNU and Maeve Conran piece is at http://news.kgnu.org/2017/02/continued-opposition-to-the-rocky-flats-wildlife-refuge/
Fall of 2016
The latest tab “USW Local 8031” will be populated with United Steel Workers (USW) Local 8031 Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant – Safety Concerns – and other related documents from that era. Union employees concerned about safety and health issues at Rocky Flats submitted their documents through Local 8031 to the Joint Company-Union Safety Committee. The Local 8031 documents were donated to Ms. Terrie Barrie, Alliance of Nuclear Workers Advocacy Groups (ANWAG) in August 2016. On November 30, 2016 Ms. Barrie presented over 100 Local 8031 Safety Concerns to the NIOSH Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health during their public comment period on behalf of Rocky Flats nuclear workers. Please read Ms. Barrie’s statement and list of evidence at https://rockyflatsambushedgrandjury.com/errie-barrie-anwag-presents-rocky-flats-safety-concerns/.
Summer of 2016
The newest tab “REFERENCE MATERIALS” includes descriptions and links to source documents from the 1992 Congressman Howard Wolpe (D-MI) Congressional Sub-Committee Hearings, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, direct U.S. Government agency requests and anonymous sources. The reference materials were used in “The Ambushed Grand Jury” non-fiction and non-profit book. The source documents were not intended to see the light of day. New documents and descriptions are being added on a frequent basis.
Spring of 2016
The May 2016 – 5280 Denver’s Mile High Magazine – published “Rogue Agent” a feature article authored by Quentin Young. The article features Jon LIpsky and the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Overlay Refuge. The article was one of 5280’s Top Ten Longreads for 2016. The article is available online at http://www.5280.com/news/magazine/2016/04/rogue-agent?page=full.
Proposed bike trails through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge
As early as February 10, 2016 the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) pursued their re-written version of the Rocky Flats Superfund site with staff of seven (7) Colorado entities concerning the Rocky Mountain Greenway bike trail system. The updated U.S. Government vision of the Rocky Mountain Greenway is to construct a bike trail system between the Rocky Mountain Arsenal (a former Superfund site) through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge (another former Superfund site) to the Rocky Mountain National Park. In support of bike trails through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge), FWS has dangled a U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) grant proposal to construct bike trail connectors on the eastern and northern sides of the Refuge. The Federal Land Access Program (FLAP) grant involves a 17.21% contribution from local municipalities in support of the DOT funding the other 82.79% for what is expected to be a multi-million dollar construction project.
FWS had no published plans to accommodate bike trails through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. All evidence to the contrary, in its November 23, 2011 Environmental Assessment (EA), under authority of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), FWS rejected the City of Golden’s application to construct bike-only paths through the Refuge, Right-of-Way (ROW). FWS conveniently cited the provisions of the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge Act of 2001 and Congressional Record, in this instance, that a bike path without associated roadway improvements does not meet the requirements of the law. The eastern side of the Refuge, 300 feet west of Indiana, was designated as a Right of Way, transportation corridor. Now and without an EA, FWS is promoting a bike-only path through the Refuge ROW. By the way, the FWS deadline to inhabit the Refuge with humans is 2016.
Jefferson County, Colorado applied for the FLAP grant with DOT to connect the Rocky Mountain Greenway through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge. The Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge completely surrounds the currently active Rocky Flats Superfund site also known as Department of Energy Legacy Site. On February 10, 2016 a Boulder, Colorado Open Space Board of Trustees Meeting, Agenda item 5, included the FLAP grant briefing. A 7-minute video is available for background information.
The misinformation, cover-up or re-writing of Rocky Flats history was well on its way to municipal approval for the bike trails and Rocky Mountain Greenway connectors on Indiana Street and Colorado-128 through the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
On April 4, 2016 FWS conducted its type of public engagement – more like a one-way conversation – to announce its Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge bike trail connection with the Rocky Mountain Greenway at the Rocky Flats Stewardship Council meeting. Contrary to its own EA decision and public engagement policy, FWS presented a schematic of the proposed bike trail system and Visitor Center. On April 22, 2016 Jeffco Parks produced a FLAP video featuring David Lucas, FWS that includes inaccurate statements concerning Rocky Flats. More about FWS public engagement policy regarding Rocky Flats, please view the video of FWS Director Dan Ashe’s commitments, under oath, to Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO).
For context: “SUPERFUND SITE” added
Beginning April 5, 2016 members of the Rocky Flats Technical Group attended scheduled Council, Commission and Trustee meetings for Arvada, City of Boulder, Boulder County, Broomfield, Jefferson County, Superior and Westminster, Colorado to enlighten Councilors, Commissioners and Trustees that the Rocky Mountain Greenway should go around the Rocky Flats National Wildlife Refuge and not through it. Though the Town of Superior was the only municipality to vote no to the grant the majority of the remaining votes included the contingency of environmental sampling and that the Rocky Flats Technical Group is to be consulted.
The following archived audio and video recordings document the efforts and results, thus far, of the Rocky Flats Technical Group:
Date Municipality Agenda Item Media
February 10, 2016 City of Boulder, OSBOT #5 Video
April 5, 2016 Boulder County #2 Video
April 5, 2016 Westminster Not designated Audio
April 11, 2016 Westminster Not designated Audio
April 20, 2016 Superior PROSTAC Not designated Video
April 25, 2016 Arvada Not designated Video
April 25, 2016 Superior #13 Video
April 25, 2016 Westminster Not designated Audio
April 26, 2016 Broomfield #5 Video
May 3, 2016 City of Boulder #5B Video
May 10, 2016 Jefferson County #8 Video
May 12, 2016 Boulder County #16 Video
May 16, 2016 Arvada Not designated Video
Summer of 2015
Highland City Club, Boulder, Colorado
Rocky Flats: Overcoming a Toxic Past
The Highland City Club, Boulder, Colorado hosted the Rocky Flats Series. Thanks to Professor Emeritus Harvey Nichols, Ph. D. for initiating and co-hosting these important presentations to promote public dialogue regarding Rocky Flats issues. Thanks to KNGU for their June 23, 2015 coverage and article and Harvey’s audio interview is available at http://news.kgnu.org/2015/06/ongoing-concerns-about-the-rocky-flats-site/ and July 21, 2015 post of Jon Lipsky’s interview at http://news.kgnu.org/2015/07/jon-lipsky-raising-awareness-about-ongoing-dangers-at-rocky-flats/.
The series shaped up as follows:
Part 1: LeRoy Moore, Ph.D. presentation was on May 27, 2015, more at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3YbDdMvvW7E;
Part 2: James Crnkovich and Robert Del Tredici’s presentation was on June 12, 2015, more at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgimbvC0nIE;
Part 3: Harvey Nichols, Ph.D. presentation was on June 23, 2015, more at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EA4cjrYqOis;
Part 4: Jon Lipsky, M.A.S. presentation was on July 22, 2015, more at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6kuH7PxIzw;
Part 5: Professors Michael Ketterer and Iggy Litaor’s presentation was on August 4, 2015 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=keZZ1A7-xys; and,
Part 6: Gale Biggs, Ph.D. presentation was on August 19, 2015 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs-BZZJolYs.
June 6, 7, and 8, 2014
The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, Arvada, Colorado hosted:
The three-day event was open to the public and included a panel discussion with former FBI Special Agent Jon Lipsky, who led the FBI/EPA raid on Rocky Flats and is now part of the Ambushed Grand Jury Citizen’s Investigation, former Colorado Governor Roy Romer, and former Congressman David Skaggs. Lipsky, who has accused the Justice Department of turning the FBI investigation into “part of a cover-up” has an insider’s view of the raid and Rocky Flats that itself is quite different from opinions expressed by Governor Romer and Representative Skaggs.
The Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities has posted the panel discussions available on YouTube:
June 6, 2014 Introduction, Welcome and Citizen Panel featuring LeRoy Moore, Ph.D at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxC3ga67qJs;
June 7, 2014 Keynote Panel featuring Jon Lipsky at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4Ov7LwQ8bE;
June 7, 2014 Secrecy and It’s Fallout featuring Jon Lipsky and Judy Danielson at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pI_jKWrEA0A;
June 7, 2014 Imagining the Real: Art and Rocky Flats at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBNRIpESu8I;
June 8, 2014 Health Issues featuring Terrie Barrie, ANWAG at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3vi0nrm0l0;
June 8, 2014 Contamination featuring Niels Schoenbeck, Ph.D. at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EoymhHmHtTc.