Second Public Meeting
Public Comments / Questions and Answers
(These statements are NOT direct quotes. All statements are paraphrased. "Team" refers to either one or more members of the project team who responded to a questions or comment. )
Public: How will the documents be organized?
Response (Paul Renard): We have recommended that all the records be kept in one place. Along with the records, we will provide some background-- maybe a copy of the proposal and the contract. We want people to be able to look at all of the information from the study.
Public: Can I make a recommendation that a site such as the University's Government Documents Center be considered as a possible location? They are prepared for organizing and preserving the documents. On the other hand, the DOE reading room is only open from 9a-5p, which is an access issue. Will there be a duplicate source-- maybe via the Internet or other source?
Response (Paul Renard): The deliverable for this project is a database, which may be provided on a CD-ROM. We will consider your recommendations.
Public: What years are included in the study?
Response (Paul Renard): The CDC study will look at the time from when LANL opened to the present. NIOSH looks at worker stuff. ATSDR considers future events. All these groups are working on the same topic but in different areas.
(Tom Widner): The project team will also collect information for areas off the hill that were part of LANL operations. The Trinity Site is an example.
Public: If you do a full-blown dose reconstruction, what is the process? Will information be generic, or will it describe specific releases at specific times?
Response (Paul Renard): A dose reconstruction will look at scenarios for different types of people at different times.
Public: How specific will a dose reconstruction be?
Response (Paul Renard): The person that can answer that question is not here. I can say we may certainly do a dose reconstruction. If we do, it will not be completed in a vacuum. The process will be discussed, and we will work with the public. Right now we are in the first phase, which is huge in itself.
Public: Is there specific criteria to determine if a dose reconstruction is necessary?
Response (Paul Renard): No. At Fernald, a complete dose reconstruction will be completed based on the fact that some silos were never capped allowing radon to escape. It would be very premature to say that in New Mexico we are going all the way to a dose reconstruction. The decision will be made with the public.
Public: Why didn't you get a letter regarding the level of commitment from day one?
Response (Paul Renard): We got commitments at the beginning of the study. We had five to six declassifiers. We met them, and their manager said there would not be a problem. I do not think he knew the magnitude of the study. We still face some problems, but we have cleared major hurdles. It took seven months to get over them, but we are making progress.
Public: Are there people at other sites that are already qualified?
Response (Paul Renard): The ChemRisk team all had Q clearances, but there were problems transferring the clearances to LANL.
Public: Why aren't more declassifiers working on the CDC study?
Response (Paul Renard): All the declassifiers were not available for our project. They have been on other projects. Now the letter from DOE should increase priority for this project.
Public: Regarding declassification, what is it?
Response (Paul Renard): Some of the documents are classified and must be declassified. Others are not marked as to their classification status but must be reviewed. I don't know if there are different declassifiers for different types of documents, but all of the information has to be reviewed.
Public: There is a real public trust issue regarding the DOE-Albuquerque reading room. It has a reputation for having the biggest and "baddest" lawyers. It's the hens and foxes analogy.
Response (Paul Renard): The DOE reading rooms are a vehicle to make information available to the public. There is a huge expense in running them. We are concerned about the public perception. I don't have something worked out. May be we can do something at other locations. The database is a potential for checks and balances. CDC has worked successfully with reading rooms before.