News & Activities
June 23, 2022
August 2021 - June, 2022 (News article links below)
6/7/2022 - GISD to replace soil contaminated with arsenic at Sam Houston Middle School
3/23/2022 - EPA sets new deadline for removal of Garland’s contaminated soil
2/23/2022 - Garland ISD to sell property that the EPA cleaned up for lead contamination last year
12/22/2021 - Garland advocates, educators worry about future contamination after the EPA cleanup
7/21/2021 - EPA finds high levels of lead, arsenic near Park Crest Elementary in Garland
8/6/2021 - EPA plans to start cleaning up soil (lead & arsenic) in Garland neighborhood by end of August
7/30/2021 - Dallas Morning News article "Garland ISD fenced off contaminated areas of Park Crest Elementary. Residents want more answers"
April 22, 2022
In preparation for the May 7 city council election, Clean Up Garland, in partnership with the Dallas Sierra Club, solicited Garland city council candidates for their feedback on environmental issues in Garland. Two candidates, Margaret Lucht and Jon Dehn (both running for District 5) responded to our questionnaire. Please see their responses at the links below.
Additional interviews with the two candidates can be found at the links below.
Margaret Lucht: https://dallasexpress.com/candidates/margaret-lucht/
March 28, 2021
As many of you may know, we have been having weekly updates with the EPA for a few months now. A few weeks ago the EPA finished conducting the soil samples from the properties that gave consent. Eric Delgado, the project manager for this evaluation moved the updates to monthly. To bring everyone up to speed I will recap the EPA's objective in this evaluation. There were 72 homes along Creek 2 C 4 that where identified as having high probability of environmental contamination. Of those 72 homes, the EPA receive consent from 34 owners to conduct soil samples and testing on their property. Upon completion of the sampling and testing process it was determined that 44% of the houses that were tested had high levels of contamination that would need to be cleaned up and the property remediated. The EPA is now Consulting with the TCEQ and the Texas Department of Health to determine what the next move is. This means that THERE WILL BE A CLEAN UP.
The elements that were found to be excessive were lead, iron, cadmium, magnesium, and inorganic arsenic. Also be advised, that other testing performed revealed high levels of chromium 6. Chromium 6 is a highly carcinogenic element. Other tests performed throughout the neighborhoods encompassed by the Meadowlark Williams group showed there were extremely high levels of inorganic arsenic. Inorganic arsenic is probably more debilitating than lead. The EPA has already stated that they would move their testing outside of the area of Creek 2 C 4 if they had reason to do so. The third-party Labs at found the high levels of inorganic arsenic should be enough reason to move them further out and widen the scope of the evaluation.
The EPA is waiting for a third party lab to validate the test findings. As soon as this occurs they will be mailing out the results to the individual members of the property tested. As soon as possible after that, the EPA will make public service announcements to let the community now that I will be holding a community meeting for questions and answers concerning what this means to you. As soon as we have the information we will begin to posted on our website as well as this Facebook group.
We have been in discussion with a couple of law firms that have shown a lot of interest in this. They have hired a third-party Testing Lab to do some evaluation on their behalf as they consider the legal remedies concerning this matter. Within the month they should have completed sampling as well. As more information becomes available we will make that available to you.
As we continue to move forward, I urge you not to lose hope or lose sight of the goal. I do not want my child or grandchildren to have to deal with this horrific mess that we were left with. Please stay with us as we continue to push this forward. I know this is been a slow process. I expressed to everyone the night of our first meeting that this would not be something that would come quickly or easily. The good news is that we now see the fruits of our labor. Please understand that this mess came about by corrupt politicians turning a blind eye in allowing the systemic environmental contamination of our neighborhood to gather tax money for their own pet projects. This has been going on for years in the city of Garland. As we are coming up to vote for the mayor and city council let me remind you that this Council and this mayor has voted in favor of Big Industry over the welfare of the neighborhood at every opportunity. After we began to bring attention to this environmental malstrom in southwest Garland, this Council has approved every request for special use permits to increase production which in turn increases production of environmental contamination. If we do not get this group of corrupt politicians out of there, we will never rid ourselves of the contamination that has killed so many of our loved ones. Also, remember when you are voting for the school board that they are as complicit in this wanton disregard for the health and well-being of the students at Park Crest Elementary and Sam Houston Junior High. GISD has acted disgracefully concerning the documentation of high levels of environmental contamination on those two campuses. What they have done is Criminal and should be considered as such. The school superintendent in Scranton Pennsylvania has been charged with endangerment for not alerting the staff and students of a campus in Scranton that had high levels of lead. I think this GISD Administration should be held responsible and made an example to other administrators that parents will no longer tolerate their children being endangered so the school can gather more tax money. Perhaps the Dallas County District Attorney could take a look at this.
This city council and this school administration has placed money before lives. This outrage must stop. Thank you for your continued support and help.
September 23, 2020
Below is a link to an excellent article from Greensource about our efforts including the cement batch plant.
June 1, 2020
We have finally received the results that we have been waiting for so long. We had a meeting with the EPA this morning and they gave us the test results as well as the link to the website they have developed. I will put a link to the website at the end of this post .
The results exceeded our expectations overwhelmingly. To give you an example, the World Health Organization considers lead in the amount of 400 parts per million to be high if it is in areas where children play or frequent. At one of the sites tested in the Park Crest neighborhood the results were 62,000 PPM. There was also another close by that one that tested 30000 PPM. When asked if it were dangerous for children to be in these specific areas. One member of the EPA staff said that he could not comment specifically on that however, that in no way would his children allowed to be in areas like those along the creek.
This situation will take years to eventually remediate. The EPA is looking at approximately 50 residences along the c24 creek, Resistol Creek, and Rupert's branch. If you know of anyone living along those Crags please have them fill out the access form in the website. That will expedite the moving forward. Eric Delgado of the EPA stated that the EPA will begin to sample and process the properties adjacent to the creeks and they will continue to move out into the neighborhood until they find the "clearline" where the contamination ceases.
Presently, the EPA is researching the chain of ownership of globe Union. They will determine who was responsible for the contamination. That company will also be responsible for property damage due to property value being decreased and they will have responsibility for the many health and death issues in the neighborhood. The release of today's information from the EPA has started the time clock ticking on the statute of limitations. My understanding is there is a period Of 2 years that you have to file a lawsuit from the time you have been made aware of issue.
Please feel free to contact your attorney concerning this matter however, we will be seeking legal help as a group as well. Our group will also be filing for nonprofit status and creating some events that will help us raise money to begin to look at other potential areas of concern. If you have knowledge of environmental contamination that is occurring now or has occurred in the past please let us know.
Please feel free to ask questions on the website. That will allow the EPA to develop a FAQ section. Please feel free to ask questions here for group discussion.
EPA Website https://response.epa.gov/globeunion
May 11, 2020
(Don) Well, I heard from Brett Kendrick today region 6 EPA section chief. The results from the tests are in and show elevated lead in areas adjacent to the creek. Due to the covid-19 issue they are putting the information out differently than they normally would. As we speak, they are developing a website specific to the globe Union Factory and The Creeks emanating from that. This will be a public website for the residence in the meadow lark Williams and English estates. It will contain information on past evaluations, this evaluation, and future activities that the EPA will undertake in continuing to investigate this. Bret anticipates the website to be up and running next week. I will keep you guys updated. I hate to say that we were right because that means a lot of people have been harmed by irresponsible companies as well as City officials. I will say that I am not surprised though
One of the principal issues we were having and getting legal representation was the ability to connect the dots back to one company. We have done that now. that company is Globe Union. This potentially memes we have cleared the last hurdle in an our price to get Justice for those of you who have been harmed. That would include family members that have passed on as well as close of you who are still suffering. We do know who carried the insurance for globe Union / Johnson Controls. Kemper and travelers were the 2 insurance companies that were involved. Johnson Controls is still in business so they would more than likely be on the hook.
Thank you guys so much for hanging in there. There is still a lot of work to be done. As I'm sure you know if you've been a part of this group that we are looking at other areas in Garland is as well. One of the principal areas we will be looking at next is the district near Centreville and Miller. Thank you again. I will update you as soon as I know something more
Mar 6, 2020
Excerpt from Garland Texan newspaper article published on March 3, 2020 "After a long wait by neighborhood residents, and at the request of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) recently took soil samples from the former Globe Union, Inc. site at 1111 South Shiloh Road. Samples were also taken from nearby commercial and industrial property and runoff paths along the nearby creek."
To read the full article visit the Garland Texan web site at the link below.
"Meadowlark, Williams, English Estates residents seek answers from EPA"
Feb 19, 2020
The soil sampling has been completed . The TCEQ team from Austin performed in a very professional manner . They showed competency and diligence as they retrieved the soil samples . It was quite refreshing to see a team from the TCEQ to act professionally , considering that we have not found that with the Fort Worth Office of the TCEQ . The samples were sealed with the chain of custody seal and shipped to the EPA accredited Testing Lab. It will take approximately 30 days for the test to be performed. The subsequent report will take approximately 60 days . Upon the completion of the report, the EPA has indicated that they will work with us in convening a public forum meeting to discuss the findings and what they mean. Please plan to attend that meeting. We are assuming there will be a period of time for the citizens to ask questions about their concerns. We do not know what the protocol of that meeting will be, however we will post that as soon as we know. Thank you once again for your support in this effort.
Feb 11, 2020
The EPA will commence testing specific locations in the Meadowlark Williams English estates area beginning Monday February 17th. the testing will conclude approximately noon on Wednesday February 19th. If you are interested in observing or recording the sampling extraction process please respond to this post and I will message you. The city of Garland will have an observer accompanying the test crew. If you could spare a couple of hours on Monday Tuesday or Wednesday we could alternate with one another. That would allow us to have representation at all times.
Sept 27, 2019
On Wednesday, Sept 25 soil samples were taken in various areas on both sides of Shiloh road. The samples went to the lab on Friday, Sept 27 and we are awaiting the results.
The sampling locations are shown on this map (tap or click here).
Aug 30, 2019
(Don) I finally got the answer from the Garland environmental health Dept concerning the water discharge into Resistol creek. US Foods (Krafts) is working on a new retention pond and during the excavation they breached the old retention pond and caused the discharge. I saw an aerial map this evening of US Foods property and it appears that the old retention Pond is the same Pond that was there in the 60s. That has been of such tremendous concerned because of the chemicals dumped in there during the sixties. I can only imagine what was discharged into Duck Creek. Krafts intends to cover the old retention pond with a parking lot.
The most amazing and troubling fact about this discharge is that the TCEQ has issued Krafts a permit that allows them to discharge at will without any testing or responsibility for what is being discharged into Resistol Creek. I have previously made attempts to contact the management at Krafts over this past year and have had no response. Today I spoke with the corporate head of Environmental issues for US Foods. She seemed genuinely astounded at what I had expressed to her about our concerns with the herbicides and our suspicions of the old retention Pond being a chemical dump. She was also unaware of any construction occurring in that area or the removal of any possibly contaminated soil. She further said that she should have been aware of this a long time ago but no one thought it important to let her know what's going on. Her Dept. will be in touch on Tuesday morning. I will talk to Robbie Neill and see if we are cleared to collect that samples.
Aug 29, 2019
(Don) The testing lab we opted for, TTI Laboratories in Arlington, is now officially a vendor of the city of Garland. The only thing remaining now to begin the testing is for the city to give us the go-ahead. As soon as the city tells us we're ready, the lab will send out all of the testing supplies and documents. Hopefully, we will take samples next week. Anyone that is interested, we will post the Day and time we will be taking the samples. I am sure most of you guys saw the gray water discharge into the Resistol Creek a couple of weeks ago. I contacted the TCEQ and they in turn contacted the city of Garland Garland sent out an inspector and she indicated there was no residual water to be tested. However she did say that she followed the creek to the source and discovered that Krafts food was doing some excavation in the area of their old retention pond (The one that had been at the top of our list of contaminated places ?????) And they excavated to the point of groundwater and the groundwater was the discharge into the creek. The problem with that scenario is that it is impossible to happen that way. I have been in the excavation and pier drilling business for 41 years. We frequently encounter groundwater and groundwater in North Texas is not under pressure and does not have a flow rate or discharge rate at the amount that was coming through the creek. Groundwater will only rise to the level of the water table. I showed the picture to one of the top experts on water contamination in our area and he said those pictures look like Wastewater. He also said that the city of Garland should have opened a file on that discharge to discover what was discharged, who is responsible, and test the creek for contamination. Once again, the Department of Environmental Health in Garland was derelict in their Duty and have shown themselves to be inept and ineffectual. Tomorrow I will upload the inspectors notes to either Facebook or our website.
Aug 23, 2019
(Don) I had a phone call yesterday from our new contact point Robby Neill. He wants to have a meeting and discuss the exact same thing we discussed in a meeting last week about protocol. If the City is so concerned about protocol they should ante up the money for a certified sample collector.
The lab has sent in their vendor packet and we are ready to move forward. Once again we are being held up by bureaucracy. If we do not have an answer by the end of the day Monday, I will request a meeting with the Administration.
Aug 20, 2019
Summary: City of Garland communicates to EPA they will take lead in testing, contrary to what they told us. $90k of EPA money to city unaccounted for.
(Don) I need to update you guys. This will probably make most of you very angry with the City of Garland. It has certainly done that for me. We sent the lab info to councilmen Smith . He in turn forwarded it to the head of the Environmental Health Dept , Jason Chesshir. After approximately a week , Mr. Chessir contacted me and ask if I would meet with him to discuss the testing procedures. Last Monday Rhonda, Hollie , Eddie and I met with Chessir. Be informed us that he had contacted the EPA and had requested their help in setting forth protocol.
The next day , I contacted the EPA and spoke with Brett Kendrick . He sent me an email saying that Chesshir contact me I'm in February and told him that the city of Garland will take the lead in this and that we simply would be observers and assist in locating sites to be tested. See attached email (click here). This was completely out of the scope of the agreement that we had with the city of Garland. To avoid any of collusion city manager Bradford . mr. Bradford stated in our meeting that the only involvement the city of Garland would have was providing the funds for the testing . Jason Chesshir did was unacceptable and out of the scope of his authority in this matter.
After speaking with Mr. Bradford, he said he would place Robbie Neal ( head of Risk management ) as our contact person. That was Fri. afternoon . I have had no more response from anyone in City of Garland Administration .
They now have had the proposal from TTI Laboratories a few weeks. The EPA is still on track for their preliminary report to be complete. These test results will be instrumental in what happens going forward.
Just so everyone knows, when we met with Jason Chessher last Monday, he emphatically stated without reservation that we would find all 8 of the heavy metal in the RCRA screening , in our test results. Furthermore, he said some of them would be in excess of the standard norm. This tells me the city has had knowledge of this issue for a long time. Tomorrow I will post some documents about an EPA Grant The city of Garland receive in 2003 to identify and assess contaminated areas within Garland. That Grant was for $200, 000. Only$110, 000 was utilize for testing and assessment. Why the hell was our neighborhood overlooked? ( More to follow )
Aug 10, 2019 (regarding soil sampling city funding):
We were made aware some time ago that procedures had to be followed to get the funds. We were not getting a carte blanche check. We took a lot of time selecting the lab due to budget constraints and the need to find a lab that could work within in our budget. I (Don) contacted Council member Smith on 7/27/19 and forwarded the labs proposal/price sheet. He let me know that the money was going to be funneled thru the environmental health Dept. After some missed phone calls we connected this afternoon and I am meeting Mr. Chessir on Monday.
The reason that " time is of essence" for the sample collection and test procedures the EPA notified me they were on target for their preliminary report in Sept 2019. The test results will determine if this moves forward. I know this has been a long process, but remember we are dealing with government agencies and as the saying goes ....the wheels of government move slow. If all goes as planned we will know exactly where we stand within the next thirty days.
Jul 28, 2019:
Sorry it has been so long since the last update. We have had some difficulty locating a lab to do the type and amount of testing we need to get an over view of the area we are looking at, that was within our budfet. However, we finally have selected the testing Laboratory. We have received proposals from TTI Laboratories in Arlington and they seem to be able to accommodate for the type and extent of testing we need at the budget we were given from the city of Garland. There will be some necessary paperwork to be done the following week with the city concerning the funding. As soon as we are past that we can begin to initiate the testing. Hopefully we will be pulling samples within the next 10 days. As soon as the lab received the samples Panama it will take 7 to 10 days before the results are available. That should keep us along the same timeline that the EPA has for their results from their own preliminary study of the sites we chose. Things should move fairly rapidly now. We will know by early September the amount and extent of contaminants in our area. Thank you for your patience.
Mar 19, 2019:
A sanitary sewer overflow has occurred from a collection facility (an 18” wastewater collection pipeline) at 4501 N. Garland Ave., near the northeast intersection of North Garland Avenue and Arapaho Road in Garland.
Click here for the information provided by the city (the city has removed this from their site <gasp> but information can be found on the Local Dallas NBC site (click here)
Mar 7, 2019:
We finally got confirmation from the EPA yesterday. The EPA, TCEQ , and the city of Garland have
confirmed that they will begin a new assessment which will include soil, air, and water testing.
Click or tap here to view EPA response
Feb 26, 2018:
Click or tap here to view our story as published on the Garland Texan site.
Nov 30, 2018 - Meeting with City of Garland and CBS 11 News Report
Click or tap here to see the CBS 11 News report mentioned below.
We met with the city of Garland today. Present were the mayor, city manager, assistant city manager, assistant City attorney, head of the environmental health department, and director of the environmental health services. We had 10 members from our group. The meeting went really well. The city Administration was open and receptive to the information we gave them. They have agreed to evaluate this situation further. They will be in touch with the EPA and TCEQ and other agencies as needed.
After the meeting Jason Allen of CBS 11 News met with us at The Tavern on the Square and gathered more information. He also did a couple of interviews and is anticipating posting that footage on Channel 11. He is not sure when that will be , however I will put out a post when I know the date. Also, the local news editor of the Dallas Morning News contacted me yesterday and they are assigning a reporter from their paper to cover this.
It is time to convene a group meeting to discuss the information we have received. We are looking at putting something together in the next two weeks. I am not sure, but we may have media coverage for that meeting. Please post if you can be there. We are looking at the second Saturday in December.