NRC violations

Newly installed waste treatment tanks with supplies, no set back, open air.

The previous company name and hours of operation are posted, but not kept. New larger tanks delivered here, are now installed.

The previous company name and hours of operation are posted, but not kept. New larger tanks delivered here, are now installed.

NRC is meeting with the city Thursday, Nov. 16, 2107, 8:30 a.m. at 1900 SW 4th Ave., Room 4A to discuss the application of a conditional use permit. NRC is located at 8828 NE Killingsworth Street at NE 89th Ave and NE Emerson St.

The permit, if granted, will allow them to expand and legitimize their current waste dumping activities. The proposal, in part, states:

The activities on site are: treatment and discharge of non-regulated waste water and storage of empty roll-off bins and temporary storage tanks.

Non-regulated wastewater


NRC violations

NRC truck dumping waste after hours with bay door open.

“Non-regulated wastewater” as written on their proposal includes septage, portable toilets, uncontaminated groundwater and other wastewaters.

The city (Mike Liefeld, 11/21/11) promised Sumner Association of Neighbors (SAN) that it would not allow septic dumping on that property. Waste related businesses are not allowed this close to residential zoning according to code. We had presented evidence to the city that the dumping severely affected SAN member’s health and livability. So the city made this one condition, yet still allowed WTS (the previous name of the company) to dump wastewater using the term leachate (a liquid that has dissolved or entrained environmentally harmful substances that may then enter the environment.)


  • May 2010: Water Truck Service (WTS), a Sherwood company owned by Mr. Bob Jonas, moves in at 8828 NE Killingsworth
  • May 2010: City Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) issues a discharge permit.
  • November 2010-February 2011: BES finds several discharge violations by WTS and fines them.
  • June 2011: Pumper trucks and loads of Honey Buckets are brought into the residential neighborhood and septic waste is sloppily dumped in
    open air. Residents file a land use inquiry with city Bureau of Development Services (BDS).
  • July 2011: BDS inspector determines that WTS does not have the required conditional use permit for a ‘waste-related’ use under code 33.254. BDS issues a violation letter to WTS.
  • September 2011: KGW reports: “NE Portland raises a stink over septic company”
  • September 2011: BDS and BES send reps to a SAN meeting to discuss WTS. BDS says they will work with WTS to mitigate odor whether WTS files for a conditional use permit or not.
  • Late September 2011: WTS files for a pre-application conference with BDS, but never files the CU permit application.
  • Nov. 2, 2011: Scott Somohano, then Chair of Sumner Association of Neighbors (SAN) and resident Patricia Irvin present concerns to the Portland City Council. They were told that BDS was currently handling the situation so the mayor or council members could not comment.
  • Nov. 21, 2011: Michael Liefeld, BDS sends letter to WTS attorney. He allows the disposal of storm water runoff without a CU permit. No storage. No treatment. No septic. No odor impact to the neighborhood. “The trigger for requiring a Conditional Use Review all depends on whether or not the material is receiving treatment at the plant. If the treated stormwater is simply transported to this site and meets acceptable levels for disposal into the sanitary sewer system without further treatment, then no Conditional Use Review would be required and this would not considered a Waste Related Use.”
  • March 2012 – present: Severe odors are continually experienced and reported to the city by numerous residents. Sample responses: “At this time we have not determined that the activity being conducted at the site is anything but introduction of treated liquids to the City’s Sanitary/storm system approved under a BES discharge permit” (Mike Liefeld, BDS, 12/2/13) “I cannot just take your word on [it] when theodor is occurring” (Michelle Seward, BDS, 1/27/14)
  • May 9, 2017 – BES issues a Wastewater Discharge Permit, for centralized waste treatment at 8828 NE Killingsworth St. Permit #437.010 permits treatment and discharge of wastewater, oils and organics.
  • May 30, 2017 – Trucks dumping septic at pre-dawn hours, trucker approaches resident filming from the street and threatens. (This is the same truck driver that threatened residents in 2011) He said they had a permit and the city would not do anything to help us.
  • June 5 2017 – Sumner resident and former SAN board member Patricia Irvin meets with Dan Parnell, BES at the site. He verifies the odor and witnesses pumper trucks dumping into several large holding tanks in the open air on the property. We learn that NRC bought WTS. BES only regulates the material that is disposed, not the method or impact. He confirms that WTS had numerous violations over the years.

Sumner residents and business owners are encouraged to attend the conditional use proposal meeting on Thursday, Nov. 16 at 8:30 a.m. We will only be able to speak if time allows, but this is a public hearing and it is important that we are visible as our neighborhood’s future is discussed.

From East Portland News:

Marguerite Feuersanger, City Planner tells why neighbors must promptly act on zoning notifications if they are to obtain “legal standing” on impending changes.

Marguerite Feuersanger, from the City’s Bureau of Development Services, urged class attendees to make comments in a timely way. “Being timely helps give you ‘standing’; and ‘standing’ is required to challenge or appeal a decision.” We learned that “standing” is the ability of a land-use representative to demonstrate to a court or bureau that the neighborhood has sufficient connection to, and can be harmed by, a change in code.

The newsletter for winter 2012 (1.7 MB PDF) for Sumner Association of Neighbors (SAN) in NE Portland, Oregon is now available online!

newsletter thumbnail Hopefully, this issue has already been delivered to your home. It includes a lot of stuff you might’ve already seen here on this website.

On a related note: Tomorrow, Tuesday, Feb 21 is our next neighborhood meeting at 7PM with two guest speakers:

#1: State Rep and Portland mayoral candidate Jefferson Smith
#2: Sarah Figliozzi of PBOT, who will talk about the upcoming Sandy Blvd sidewalk project.

We’ll also have updates on WTS, the community garden, and other stuff.

Social time with light refreshments at 6:30 PM. Meeting is at the usual location: CNN conference room, 4415 NE 87th (aka side door of Fire Station #12, just north off Sandy Blvd).

Under a deadline to file for a conditional use permit or face daily fines, Water Truck Service (WTS) decided to pull the plug. On Nov 30, WTS notified the city and SAN that they would stop trucking and disposing septage — human waste from septic tanks — at their site at NE 89th and Killingsworth on Dec 2.

Instead, WTS said they would limit their activity to processing ‘leachate,’ which is runoff from landfills. Activity has ramped down sharply, but even so some nearby residents have reported noise and garbage odors since Dec 2 when WTS is active.

WTS wide shot
Caption: A short truck backed into a pumping bay at WTS, as viewed from NE 89th in June 2011

On Feb 1, new WTS site manager Jamie Hartley, called to request that his number be shared with all our neighbors, so everyone can contact him with concerns, questions and complaints. His number will be included in winter 2012 newsletter coming out in the next week or two.

WTS is based in Sherwood. They opened here in spring 2010. Noise and chronic odor issues — nuisances under city code — were noted by neighbors from early on. Two residents asked SAN for help at our June 2011 meeting. WTS was fined on Aug 27 for violation of land use laws, and completed a conference with the city on Oct 20 in preparation for the required conditional use permit. The tough compliance requirements for the permit — including traffic, setbacks, noise, odor and enclosed space for loading and unloading waste — led to the decision by WTS on Nov 30 to stop pumping septage in Sumner.

Despite these big positive steps, homework remains to see if leachate is also considered ‘waste-related’ under the city zoning code. Any waste-related use at the site requires the same conditional use permit.

For more background, see:

For a video report by local TV reporter Ed Teachout on KGW, see their report.

Thanks to Erica, the secretary for Sumner Association of Neighbors (SAN) in NE Portland for drafting these meeting notes.

Guest Speaker: Officer Mark Wells – Crime Prevention Coordinator
Mark provided crime statistics on Sumner Neighborhood. To learn more about the current statistics, check out

Other items from Mark:

  • Property Related Crimes: (such as car prowls) on slight rise, especially with the holiday season, throughout Portland. A tip on preventing car prowls from Office of Neighborhood Involvement: Keep your vehicle “showroom” clean. This means don’t leave ANYTHING in your vehicle, especially something of value. Even visible spare change can entice a criminal to break into your car. If you must store items in your car, use your trunk. Also, park in a well lit area, roll up windows and lock your doors every time you leave your vehicle.
  • Crime Prevention Programs: Neighborhood Watch (training provided) and the Operation Recovery programs. With the help of Officer Wells, Scott will create a flyer to canvass the neighborhood to generate and take poll of neighborhood’s interest of Neighborhood Watch program. Training for the Neighborhood Watch program also includes training on Neighborhood Problem Solving.
  • Operation Recovery: a tool to use for Property Inventory Record. Office Wells encouraged neighbors to itemize belongings, as information listed on the form would be useful and needed in case of theft/burglary for police reports and insurance claims. In the case of theft, property has a better chance of being recovered.
  • A reminder: To report any suspicious activity, please call Portland Police non-emergency at 503-823-3333.
  • Office of Neighborhood Involvement (ONI) Bureau is preparing the 2012-13 budget and all are invited to attend Budget Advisory Committee (BAC) meetings. Officer Wells also encouraged neighbors to part a part of that process. To see a list of upcoming meetings, visit ONI website:
  • ONI General Fund Cuts – must submit 4%, 6% and 8% cuts (approximately $220,000 to $500,000) (Police and Fire Services fall into this category and would be affected.)
  • Opportunities for Public Input: ONI BAC meetings –5:30pm, Portland Building Room C (during non-budget, City Hall Lovejoy Rm). Or online testimony/input, Contact Council directly:


  • Community Garden: Meeting tonight at 8pm of Helensview Community Garden Steering Committee.
  • Halloween Party Recap: Good Turn Out, Ready for next year
  • WTS: From 10/20 Pre Application Process- WTS to submit/file a detailed plan by Dec 20th. Bureau of Development Services (BDS) minutes can be found on Sumner’s website at:
  • Litter Patrol update: a total 1,738 lbs of litter collected, as of current. Working with School to Work Coordinator at Helensview to involve the students in the Litter Patrol.
  • Don’t Forget the Sumner Assoc. of Neighbors Holiday Gala December 6th 6pm-8 pm at CNN office.

New Business
Next General meeting February 15, 2012 6-8:30pm 20, 2012, 6:30-8:30 PM

Old Business
Conversations of the SAN lot were brought up- walking path around the field. More to be discussed at future meetings.

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