Friday, April 30, 2010

Quartzsite H2O quality update...

Once again, you’re reading it here first. 

I have the un redacted reports on the brown/green/golden/rust colored water in Steve Bennett’s pool, and what appears to be a partial cover up job by Town officials…
Well, one thing we know for certain is that on Friday April 16th the incoming water at 680 W. Tyson St. was so disgusting that when Councilman and Fire Captain Jose Lizarraga helped to pump it out, he admitted to being repulsed by it. At Wednesday’s “Meet the Incompetents” – I mean incumbents, Lizarraga reportedly stated “I was there…It was green.” and suggested to those in attendance that if you have a swimming pool to fill, you should strain the Town water through a sock. However, Lizarraga did not offer any suggestions of what to strain it through if you actually want to drink it..
According to a letter sent from Councilwoman Barbara Cowell to Police Chief Jeff Gilbert, on April 19th, it was reported to her that“…there was something brown like sewage and green slim in the Town of Quartzsite’s drinking water”. (Cowell’s spelling error, not mine.)
(From a letter sent from Town mismanager Alex Taft to the Police Chief on April 22nd) On April 16th,At 5:30 P. M. I received a call from Council Member Jose Lizarraga stating that as Steve Bennett refilled the pool, there was still a green color in the water and sediment at the bottom of the pool. Jose said any additional assistance could wait until Monday…” From the same letter, “At 9:30 that evening”, Taft “received a call from Vice – Mayor Barbara Cowell..” and  Taft stated On the basis of that phone call I decided that a panic had been set in motion…” By 10:30 P. M. Taft had “called the police to assure a police presence the following morning when water department personnel would be at the above noted address to test the water.” The conclusion of Taft’s letter went onto to state her position that the situation “was not about drinking water but about a swimming pool” and noted that “There are still phone calls, reports to be completed and contact with ADEQ is ongoing.” Apparently Alex doesn’t understand that Bennett was filling his indoor pool that had been acid cleaned the day before with the very same DRINKING WATER that is being delivered to everyone in Town. The same people who just received a big fat rate increase for the penalty of being forced to utilize it! And of course, the possibility certainly exists that she just doesn’t care.
According to witness Star Bear Cat in yet another letter to Police Chief Jeff Gilbert, on the following morning of May 17th, the pool contained water that “was green and there was rust colored and golden sediment and algae at the bottom” with “a petroleum odor” and golden sediment that gathered into “clumps that do not easily separate and when they do they find their way back to a similar material” (Editor’s observation: Think lava lamp!). “When Rain smelled the Bennett sample it smelled to her ‘like a dirty old tractor’. She recoiled from the smell”
Quartzsite employee Jeff Sorensen
reported that at 6:48 am “On the 17th day of April 2010” he “received a call from Waste water Supervisor Rob Troxler” and approximately an hour later “we all met at Town Hall because Jeff Gilbert wanted to have a meeting before we headed over to 680 W. Tyson St. Rob Troxler, Hugh Bryant, Chief Jeff Gilbert, Joe Winslow and Alex Taft discussed how we were going to approach this problem.”      

Hey, at least we know there was no “coliert” present in the water (the ONLY thing it was tested for), and according to Jeff Sorensen in the same reportI completed my paperwork and disposed of the samples.” Gasp! Did the Town order Sorensen to destroy evidence?
A complete analysis of the Town’s water was not done. Although “no deficiencies were noted” in the testing schedule or the equipment, The Town of Quartzsite is only required by law to test for the following:
coliform - twice a month
lead and copper - every 3 years
disinfection byproducts - twice a year
maximum residual disinfectant level - monthly
and issue a Consumer Confidence Report for each calendar year by July 1st of the following year. So folks, the consumer report for this year will not be made public until the summer of 2011! When mayoral candidate Ed Foster made a public records request “for copies of the latest test for compliance and a list of the tap water testing sites” Alex Taft claims she denied Foster's request under advice from Cynthia Campbell of ADEQ because of “Homeland Security” and according to Taft “we should consult with our attorney.”
The inspection report from ADEQ dated April 22nd relates “When asked what the sediment was on the bottom of the tanks, Mr. Cruz stated it was iron and manganese sediment. In a post inspection debriefing, Mr. Cruz and Alex Taft were given contact information for two similar systems who had installed filtration systems to remove iron and manganese.” Although safe levels of these metals are listed under the EPA secondary standards, Quartzsite is NOT required to comply with those VOLUNTARY recommendations. The ADEQ report recommended replacing a worn gasket on the hatch collar of one storage tank that is scheduled to be taken off line.  It also noted a “slight sheen” of NSF approved turbine lubricant on the surface of the water. (Does turbine oil smell “like a dirty old tractor”?)
Get ready for what can only be described as the most bizarre and ridiculous campaign stunt by the current regime thus far. Along with Duty Sergeant Xavier Frausto, Police Chief Jeff Gilbert has filed criminal complaints with the La Paz County Attorney’s Office against candidates Foster and Moore! The lengthy report claims the crime victim is the “Town of Quartzsite and that Foster and Moore engaged in conspiracy and falsely reported an emergency. According to Case No. 10-00318, Gilbert reports that “Taft briefed everyone on the chain of events that had taken place, and was very concerned that Foster and Moore had begun a campaign to instill fear in the public that the Town’s water supply was unsafe.”
In a report that is riddled with hearsay, Police Chief Gilbert refers to statements allegedly made by the 14 witnesses he listed, but no sworn witness statements were attached. According to Gilbert “The entire incident and the false report made to Central Dispatch was created over nothing more than a dirty swimming pool. The incident was reported falsely with an intent to create a scare or panic for the public, in order to further their political agenda.
I am requesting charges of “False Reporting” ARS 13-2709.A.1 and “Conspiracy” ARS 13-1003.A.”
Then, in an apparent attempt to further his own political agenda, Chief Gilbert misrepresents the facts by claiming that ADEQ “found no significant deficiencies or contaminants within Quartzsite’s water system.” Or maybe Gilbert was just incapable of reading and understanding the nuances of the report.
So what WAS in the water flowing from the Town’s service connection into Steve Bennett’s pool? The preliminary test results from an independent lab confirm that the “sediment” was microbiological. If I was a betting man, my money would be on algae  and turbine lubricant combined with the iron and manganese that always gives Town water a bad taste and odor (and which can cause “skin or tooth discoloration”). When the independent lab tests are in, you can bet that you might read about them here first too!


  1. There was no report of an emergency made Gilbert and Taft are lying for political reasons..

    The preventable tooth discoloration is done from the inside... not like what happens from drinking tea. But if you kids have grey teeth most of the council have none so they don't care...

    Which is what the real issue is...

    The only panic created was when Huntley saw the slime on the bottom of the pool and thought he had drowned.

  2. Sounds to me like Alex and and Jeffy might have cooked up the idea of a public "panic" in the back seat of his patrol car that night, as retaliation for Foster and Moore filing AZPOST complaints against him.

    If Ponce wasn't there to do the real police work, then I doubt that Jeffy could convince anyone besides the incumbents he was doing any work at all for that big fat pay raise everyone claims he just got. No witness statements??? WTF!!! And Jeffy brought the charges on behalf of the Town??? I guess that means the incumbent council, and Alex Taft must have "conspired" with Gilbert to bring these charges against political opponents!!! All they need to do is look in the mirror to see the guilty parties here. If this doesn't prove Foster's charges that Jeffy is engaging in illegal electioneering - I don't know what does.Seems like malicious prosecution to me.

  3. Jeff Sorensons personal life has nothing to do with anything and posting his myspace serves no purpose.. hes not elected to anything and is a subordinate who has to do what hes told..

  4. Jade your a fucken idiot

  5. What ever will you people do when Ponce leaves? Yep going to work for CHP. QPD will carry on just like they did before he came here.

  6. This is for those of you who just want to cause hate and discontent, and I am sure that this won't have a response until the Yacht Club is opened, judging by the crazy crap posted here, but all I am going to say is that you can post all the signs you want around town, and talk all the nonsense you can dream up, but you will NEVER convince me that this town is a bad place, and frankly, if you hate the people and the town so much, go be a pain in someone elses ass... WE DON'T NEED YOU!

  7. I don't think anyone here hates the Town or thinks it's "a bad place". We're here because we care about Quartzsite and worry about it's future. Otherwise, this would be a waste of time.

    A new Town plan is being written, so the future is whatever the voters decide in two weeks. And "Anonymous", in a "free country", you do need us, because a diversity of opinions is what defines us as a Nation. Otherwise this would be like North Korea and the penalty for not regurgitating the party line would be death, not defamation.

  8. I just notice a pattern, yall get butt hurt cause you either get recalled out of office, can't hold an office, or get busted trying to use your office for personal gain so all you do is sit and complain about everyone that is "REALLY" trying to make this a better community. So you can throw out all the penal codes and big political words (which is kinda cute) you want, and make personal attacks against people that you "DON'T EVEN KNOW!" all you want, because when the dust settles and the day is done, I can rest at night knowing that this town will grow and prosper to an even better place. So you people can continue with your propaganda and hate blogs, as long as none of you are directly involved in the decision making I can feel safe and secure with our towns future.

  9. Hey "Anonymous", is that you Sorenson? If I'm an "idiot", at least I'm an idiot that can spell!
    And to the "Anonymous" post above this reply written by the person with the bad grammar - What do you consider "a better community"? The Town cannot "grow and prosper" until it has the sewer capacity to handle that growth. This will not happen as long as the current council spends the money on engineering studies that go nowhere, animal shelters that house pipe or warm fuzzy projects like the latest community center, located at the park where it will be virtually useless and inaccessible with every good rain. Without infrastructure the Town can't grow, period. Core businesses like RV parks and swap meets are being driven to bankruptcy by increases in fees and permits with nothing to fill the gap for about two years or more. All the while current spending exceeds revenue by about two thirds, so the debt is growing rapidly...and an incorporated municipality in AZ cannot incur debt which exceeds six percent of it's taxable property.
    Who's the "idiot" now?

  10. I'm still standing my ground that you are. You can't fix stupid, but you can sure as hell keep from voting it in. It's been fun, but I actually have a life so you enjoy your nonsense. And no, this isn't "Sorenson", just a pleased citizen of this community that feel our local government and police force are doing the best job they can with what they have to work with. Oh and P.S. Grammar Police, why don't you at least spell his name right, it looks to me like it is "Sorensen".

  11. If you think Ponce is the one holding the Police department together you are really screwed..That guy has no idea what is going on with all his babies being born around the state..Talk about responsibility to the community.You are on his side cause you think these idiots will be voted in come May 18 but you guys got a good one coming..

  12. What a bunch of BIG baby's!!! All in favor say..." I" . Haters you should mind your own business and get a life. C'mon people do you really have nothing better to do than talk crap about people. Remember KARMA is a BI**CH!!

  13. I used to be a loyal follower but after watching you give my pet the same water out of a hose that you say is terrible, I will never be back! I wonder what else you have done to my little friend. You need to leave before you kill someone elses pet with the heat!Shame on you for letting them suffer like that and makeing them drink that nasty water! Please, go away and don't come back!!

  14. Coward!!! Won't sign your name to liable I see...If your talking about MY business, then you just proved your making up what you write "Anonymous". The water that comes out of the hose at "Greasewood" is out of a well - NOT THAT SMELLY TOWN "SEDIMENT" WATER!!! And if you had ever been there, you'd know that EVERY UNIT AT A FUR SALON HAS AN AIR CONDITIONER (TWO ON THE BIG ONE) - UNLIKE THE PAW POWER SHELTER...According to "mayor" Huntley they had just got approval to move forward with electric as of the Council Meeting on April 27th. That was AFTER THE LAST HEAT WAVE! And both Huntley and Johnson the "Building Official" acknowledged that the shelter STILL HAD NOT PASSED INSPECTION - EVEN THOUGH THEY'VE HAD ANIMALS THERE FOR WEEKS!!! The last Paw Power shelter was shut down because their worn out swamp coolers couldn't keep up with the heat and the animals were suffering from heat exhaustion. But the same old junk that got them shut down last time is being put right back up at the new location. Funny, but Town Hall just got brand new air conditioners for Taft and the Council's pleasure...The animals and children only seem to become important to those people right before an election. Hmmm...And I've been going to the meetings, so I know the track record.

  15. vigilante vendor says, (quote)..."Won't sign your name to liable I see..." (end quote)

    And you have the audacity to criticize others spelling and grammar?

    This and any other blog is not about spelling and grammar, if it was, we'd all be caught at one time or another for typos, or whatever. Let's get back to what this is all about...the blog and its content.

    Jade, many of us in Quartzsite have driven by Greasewood and have seen what a hovel your place is. It is our opinion, but it is that, our opinion. As we also recall, you are a renter not a property owner, therefore, not a taxpayer. Why are you expounding as if you were a property taxpayer?

    Yes, we have seen you at the Town meetings huffing and puffing on subjects not germane to the Town Meeting Agenda at the time. Yes, we see how you purport yourself. Yes, we know your track record as well as the other members of the reform slate and its membership.

    DO you really understand the word "infrastructure"? It is exactly what is happening already. The approval of another hotel and its parking, a solar tower, a community building and its concession, improving Targa Trail, redoing parking throughout the town, expanding waste water are infrastructure. We are a very small town, we are doing what we can and as fast as possible, but only as fiscally as possible. This was not all done just before the elections as you state. This all took a lot of time, months and years. What has taken time is the "un-doing" of past ills of the past Councils (not this one). There has been a lot of damage to both the Town and its citizens in the last 10 years, but specifically in the last 3-4 years. This current Council has the disheartening tasks of cleaning all of this up and getting us back to a heartfelt, solid and self-sufficient Town and all of its people. This current Council finds find the tasks less daunting if they are divided up into manageable sections. This is what they are doing, and we applaud them for that. We cannot go back to the old way of politics to 3-4 years ago where only personal agendas play and getting us into all of these pits we are just starting to crawl up and out of like the water and sewage rates. It was the old Councils that created these problems not the current one. The old Councils would not raise the little annual increases that would have taken care of the mess. Then they took money from one fund (hurf) to pay the bills. It was not only wrong it was illegal to pay town utilities with "funds". Now, we all have to clear this all up and if the water and sewage were not increased this year and next to clear all of this up, the State of Arizona would come in and shut Q-town down and send the water and sewage bids out to the independent corporations. You do not want to see what hikes are untiol you see what the independent utilities will charge. They will charge at least double what you are paying today. That is not what we want. We want Q-Town to make it on their own and with appropriate billing, appropriate funding, and appropriate people who understand what "fiscal responsibility" really means. Municipal fiscal responsibility is not "earned" just by being elected (which is what the reform slate thinks), it is "learned" (which the current Council is doing, inherited problems and now are learning how to take care of them for all of us, not a few).

    You and the rest of the Reform Slate are also using a World-wide recession as your scapegoat to denigrate this wonderful Town. Things are tough everywhere, not just here. Time will heal the recession and time will resolve more and more here as well.

    Quartzsite Citizens, please come out and vote on May 18th, we need your votes for the current Council. By not voting (because of the past wrongs), we only will let in the wrong types again. Vote to stand tall and be counted! Quartzsite is a viable, wonderful and safe, small Town on the right track!

  16. We've been going to the meetings also. What we see is Ed Foster strutting and walking around, staring at the walls, mumbling to others in the back, all DURING Town Meetings. And this is a man who wants to be Mayor, someone who acts as if anything but the Town and its doings are important. To him it is all as important as the walls he is staring at during the meetings.

    We also see Jade walking around, touching base with Ed to get the OK to disrupt and listen to her own nonsensical rhetoric that after all is said and done, none of it meant anything at all.

    We know the track record as well. The current Council in the last 7 months has done more good than the last 11 years of damage from the former Councils.

    What we see here is a group of reformists (as they call themselves) who do not want any type of law and order, no codes, no ordinances, just lawlessness...hmmm.

  17. Since there was no place to put a comment on the incidence of Bennett's pool, I'll put it here since it does pertain to the water in Quartzsite.

    Why was Bennett's pool emptied? How long was it empty? If he says it needed an acid wash, why? Didn't he take care of it? Why was a hose sitting in the pool instead of using the water pump and line? Where was the hose sitting and in what condition before bringing it to the pool? How long was the water hose and from what faucet, and how long ago since that faucet was used? Did Bennett make sure that someone was present right at the moment he turned on that faucet in anticipation of something gone awry, or was it planned all along?

    I have asked and spoken to a few people with pools in Quartzsite, none of them have or had any problems with the water, somehow only Bennett?

    Sorry, too many questions, not enough time...

  18. I don't need to get Ed's "ok" on anything.We'll see if my "nonsensical rhetoric" means anything when the summons are served. If you think my place is a "hovel", then I guess you haven't looked at Alex Taft's place. And gee, I'd love to spend my time fixing up a permanent facility to benefit the community, but instead, my day is frittered away with work...oh, and typing my memorandum!!! My customers don't come back year after year because of the decorations, they come for the finished product because I'm one of the best in the nation. My work speaks for itself. And you don't know my "track record" at all...We know how Town Hall feels about renters, but they count too!!! You don't give anybody a reason to want to be a property owner, probably why so many properties sit empty with faded "For Sale" signs. But I support the local economy just like the rest of the "riff raff" and without us you will dry up and blow away. Something several of you richly deserve - but the rest shouldn't suffer for your elitist attitude!!!

  19. No where in any missive was it stated that there was any wrong in 'renting'. We have rented for many years until we moved in here year-round. So have many others, and many still do. We are happy there are so many (possibly too many) RV Parks to accomodate all who want to live and visit here.

    But, to use your anger and defensive attitude the way you do is sad. There are many "For Sale" signs all over the Town, yes. Many landowners have passed away and their heirs live somewhere else and do not want to move here, their choice. After all, there is a large portion of this populace in Quartzsite that are (and have been) retired. Also, the recession has hit us all hard, many want to get their money out of here by selling. The main problem though, here, in selling is that the owners (residential and commerical) are still trying to sell at the highest real estate pricing of 2005 and 2006. You will not get anyone to buy at those (now) very inflated prices. If you have spoken with any of the realtors in this Town, they will let you know in the high majority of residential properties sold in the last year and a half, they were severely reduced. These reductions were not just in half but even much lower just to get them sold. I just wish the commercial owners of properties on Main and Central would take notice and sell them at a more appropriate price so we can get going on building up this town and bringing in more businesses to put us in a more price competitive market to bring down the cost-of-living here. Everything else is doing well.

    I would never be so bold to say whether renters or property owners "rule the roost" and without one group or the other the Town would dry up and blow away as you state. That is not so. All members of this Town are important, all of them. To succeed, we need everyone together and stay together to keep this Town viable. Please stop trying to separate this Town, it just won't happen.

  20. Please go talk to yourself in the bathroom mirror "Anonymous", because you're wearing out your welcome here.