Update to the high levels of E-coli ("Crappy Creek," Nov. 6): Over a year ago I complained to the City of Petaluma and its previous harbormaster before that. I have witnessed liveaboards blow their waste out the sides of their boats. I have witnessed people toss buckets full of human waste like it was the thing to do. I have made reports to the new harbormaster and even all the way up to the mayor. And everyone in between. I met a gentleman from the state water board who came and tested the water in the marina. The levels were high; the highest being at the marina entrance. He didn't understand why. Nor did I. Then all this negative publicity came out.
The Bay Keepers are correct in saying that this whole plan isn't effective. I wrote to them and explained. The very next day after over a year of trying to get someone to enforce the obvious.
After finding out the pump-out station at the marina was pumping directly into the river and that may be why the E-coli levels are so high at the mouth of the marina. The pump-out station is located at the mouth of the marina as well. But after all of this time and effort, the state water board got hold of me and the next day an inspector came and put an "out-of-order" sign on the pump-out station.
It is the marina's responsibility to ensure the vessels are using the pump-out station and not dumping discharge in the river. If there are a total of 16 people living on the boats in the marina and only two boats use the pump-out station and none of the people use the restrooms, what is the only logical explanation?
Why have all these rules and regulations if nothing is enforced? The part that really sucks is that the people who are environmentally conscious and respect our waters get punished because of this.
This is the turning point for the Petaluma River. Hopefully, people will start to do the right thing. If it takes holding the responsible parties accountable, then so be it. It will work like peer pressure.
Thank you Baykeepers for your help in getting some action.
Chad Roughton Via PacificSun.com