Monday, December 15, 2014

MARAD FOIA Release No. 6 of Oct 10

Okay, finally here is the 92-page FOIA release from MARAD dated October 10. This would be the sixth release. While there is a lot of helpful information, there is also a lot of useless garbage, which has come to be expected from the government.

For an agency that claims that STORIS was not their ship and that they had nothing to do with her beyond just giving her a place to be moored, MARAD officials sure are busy withholding information through the “deliberative process” and “attorney-client privilege” redaction processes.

And nowhere is Section 3502 of the Duncan Hunter NDAA of 2009 mentioned. This is the law that made STORIS’ export to Mexico for dismantling ILLEGAL. The other relevant federal law, 40 USC 548, is also nowhere to be seen anywhere in this correspondence.

The sections had to be posted in pieces as I had to redact additional personal information from the documents.

The cover letter is here:
Sec 1- Pages 1-15 –
Sec 2- Pages 16-32 –
Sec 3- Pages 33-49 –
Sec 4- Pages 50-64 –
Sec 5- Pages 65-82 –
Sec 6- Pages 83-92 –

A summation of the information is as follows:

Pg 1-6 - Internal discussion re my inquiry of Oct 28 as the ship was headed for Ensenada
Pg 7 – Note (link?) of Denise Rucker Krepp (former MARAD general counsel) op-ed on sale of ship
Pg 8-15 more links to various news stories of interest to MARAD (non STORIS)
Pg 15 – Note re: KMXT story about STORIS supporters seeing possibility of saving ship
Pg 15-22 – More news stories
Pg 23 – Same as pg 15
Pg 24-25 – More news stories
Pg 26-29 – Internal news story updates for MARAD staff, redacted as nonresponsive
Pg 30-31 – Inquiry from Jessica York of Vallejo Times about the ship.
Pg 32 – Additional news stories, redacted
Pg 33 – Discussion/summary of PCBs and TSCA with response redacted through atty/client and deliberative process privileges
Pg 34-44 – More discussion among MARAD officials including Curt Michanzyk about STORIS in response to the message I sent the morning of Oct. 28 as the ship was en route to Mexico.
Pg 44 – Reference again to “interesting discussion among my staff about what appears to be a PCB-free vessel…” from Kevin Tokarski and back to Joe Pecoraro’s memo about Jeff Siragusa walking the ship. Then there is the question about William Cahil asking about whether the ship is PCB free.
Pg 45 – Question from Kevin Tokarski about where the ship is going, answered by Joe Pecoraro as Ensenada. Tokarski’s question is partially redacted through deliberative process. More discussion on Pg 46 with mention of departure date “slipping for some time.”
Pg 47 – Oct. 22 email from Joe Geldhof of STORIS Museum asking about bottom cleaning. Also an Oct 10 inquiry from Geldhof regarding what would happen to the ship if Jurisich abandoned the ship to the government.
Pg 50 – reference to a June 17 Anchorage Daily News story and some possible speculative “wonder if” statement by Kevin Tokarski which has been redacted under deliberative process.
Pg 60 – Load line exemption cert and photos of the departure
Pg 61-64 – Back to more discussion related to my Oct. 28 email
Pg 65 – March 12 email stream re: flag status, EPA information re: STORIS and PCBs,
Pg 66 – STORIS was mentioned at a meeting on March 12 (Denise Krepp had made a presentation at the USCG Committee Meeting) and reference to Danielle Ivory’s 12/24/13 FOIA from the NY Times. Email is from Gregory O’Brien of State Department. It is interesting that the State Department is involved.
Pg 61-73 – More discussion among MARAD about towing/departure information such as the Siragusa walkthrough as above.
Pg 73 – Discussion between Kevin Tokarski and Barbara Voulgaris (historic preservation officer for MARAD) about STORIS, the Last Patrol and museum use
Pg 73-78- More discussion about ship departure.
Pg 79 – statement that USCG does not fall under the definition of a US citizen. Must be in relation to ownership and transfer. (Obviously ignoring Duncan Hunter Section 3502).
Pg. 79 – Explanation that if the ship was never documented in the U.S. then various sections of foreign transfer regulations would not apply.
Pg 80-87- More discussion about departure arrangements, much repeated from earlier correspondence
Pg 88- 89  Discussion of GLACIER, custody vs. retention, IRIS, STORIS, PLANETREE from inquiry from House T&I
Pg 90-92 legal interpretation of 88-89, redacted of course

I have since received additional correspondence from MARAD. This includes a fee waiver rejection, a positive partial response to a previously filed appeal that will release some of the information redacted in the information above and 181 pages of miscellaneous information that I am still reviewing.

This last release marks from MARAD’s point of view, their FINAL RESPONSE, so I have less than 45 days at this point to start putting together my final official appeal to the FOIA request. As indicated as each of these releases has been posted, there are serious holes in the information released, so there will be a lot of points to discuss as that appeal process moves forward.

Please take the time to read this information as it has and continues to be a lot of work to fight for this.

STORIS is worth it. She should have been saved and I, along with all of you, want answers.