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Public Comment Begins for Vieques Community Involvement Plan

Release Date: 08/15/2007
Contact Information: Brenda Reyes (787) 977-5869, reyes.brenda@epa.gov; Mary Mears (212) 637-3675, mears.mary@epa.gov

(San Juan, P.R.) In order to continue to promote meaningful community participation and ensure that the public is informed of the progress made during the cleanup process of the Vieques Superfund site, the U.S. Navy, in consultation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Puerto Rico Environmental Quality Board and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services have developed a community involvement plan. While this plan was developed with extensive input from public stakeholders and it already reflects their input, the Navy and Agencies are giving the public another opportunity to review the plan before it is made final.

“The foundation of Superfund’s community involvement program is the belief that members of the public affected by a Superfund site add value to the process and need to know about work that is being done in their community,” said Alan J. Steinberg, EPA Regional Administrator. “This plan will help us keep those critical lines of communication open.”

The Community Involvement Plan for Vieques is intended to facilitate collaboration and to serve as a guide for all outreach and community involvement activities for the site. The plan describes the various tools that the Navy and the Agencies will use to communicate with and involve the public, including public information sessions and meetings, fact sheets and Web site updates. A public repository of information has already been established by the Navy in Isabel Segunda. It also contains a straight-forward history of the site and details efforts to date to clean it up.

Interested individuals can view the Community Involvement Plan on EPA’s web site at www.epa.gov/region02/vieques or at the following locations: Caribbean Environmental Protection Division, Ponce de León #1492, Suite 417, Santurce Puerto Rico, 00907; Biblioteca Electrónica Calle Carlos LeBrum #449 Isabel Segunda, Vieques, PR 00765; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Vieques Field Office, Vieques Office Park, Road #200, Km0.4, Vieques, P.R 00765; Puerto Rico Environmental Quality Board, Edificio Ambiental Gubernamental Road PR - 8838, Sector El Cinco, Rio Piedras, PR 00926.

Comments may be submitted on this proposed plan for a period of 30 calendar days beginning August 17, 2007. EPA will evaluate the comments received and either incorporate or provide a response. Written comments should be submitted by U.S. Mail or via e-mail no later than September 18, 2007 to the following address:

U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
Caribbean Environmental Protection Division
Centro Europa Building
Suite #417, Stop 22
Ponce de León #1492
Santurce, PR. 00907
reyes.brenda@epa.gov

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