Today, WP filed a new motion asking the court to reconsider it’s denial of their request to extend the deadline to supplement expert witness testimony. The legal arguments for reconsideration and extending are obscure and based on case law establishing “just cause”.
Also, WP is asking the court to consider the fairness of allowing them to respond to the allegations of fraud that were allowed by the court this summer in their amended complaint, which WP noted was filed six months after the deadline for such filings.
At the heart of the matter, and the object of Wolfeboro’s objection, is WP’s intent to add the recently produced H&A Remediation Plan that was reviewed by NHDES and recommended for implementation. WP contends that they also intend to introduce a modeling expert to refute Wolfeboro’s claims concerning the inadequacies of the original modeling that was used to support the initial design and permitted capacity of 600,000 gallons per day (gpd).
Near as I can interpret the remediation plan, it calls for covering the steeper failing slopes with a “geotechnical fabric” covered with up to three feet of rip-rap, which are large stones. The idea is that the slopes will still ooze some groundwater, but that it will not cause erosion and migration of soils.
The NHDES letter seems to indicate some disagreement between NHDES and WP as to the ultimate effectiveness of this approach in increasing the site capacity. My impression is that WP considers this seepage OK in that it is not a “point source discharge”, while NHDES seems to believe it is a bottom line test. In other words, they don’t care how the water is discharged, it cannot reach the wetlands and nineteen mile brook as surface water.
WP has engaged a wetlands expert and wants to have them evaluate the situation. Wolfeboro is blocking them from access to the site. WP’s initial motion to the court to compel Wolfeboro to allow the site visit was withdrawn, according to Dave Ford as a result of threats from Wolfeboro. That motion was filed again last week.
At this point, the position of the two sides are diverging more and more. Wolfeboro increased the stakes with their allegations of fraud, and WP in turn is minimizing the problem by claiming that full capacity can be achieved for something in the $1-2 million range. Both sides are stretching the limits of credibility, but because the stakes are now so high, there is little likelihood that either will agree to a settlement.
So our fate may be decided by a dozen of so ordinary citizens, purposely chosen from the population by jury specialists to understand as little as possible about the actual situation. You can’t make this stuff up.