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									STATE OF RHODE ISLAND                          SUPERIOR COURT
PROVIDENCE, SC


HARTFORD PARK TENANTS ASSOCIATION, )
DEBRA A. MARTIN, on behalf of      )
herself and as next friend to her )
minor child MICHAEL J. MARTIN,     )
SHEILA WILHELM, on behalf of       )
herself and as next friend to her )
minor children MIKAELAH WILHELM,   )
JOSHUA WILHELM and RICHARD WILHELM,)
and NICHOLAS J. MARSELLA           )
     Plaintiffs                    )
                                   )
V.                                 )           C.A. 99-3748
                                   )
RHODE ISLAND DEPARTMENT OF         )
ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT, CITY     )
OF PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND,       )
PROVIDENCE SCHOOL BOARD, AND ALAN )
SEPE, in his capacity as Acting    )
Director of the Department of      )
Public Property of the City of     )
Providence                         )
     Defendants                    )

                               COMPLAINT

                           INTRODUCTION

     1.   Plaintiffs challenge defendants' decisions to approve and

commence construction of three public schools with a projected

student population of 1,200 students on the site of a former garbage
dump containing hazardous materials located on Springfield Street

in Providence, Rhode Island.    The hazardous materials present in

the dump site present a variety of health risks to both the future

students and adult workers at the three schools.   Some of the health

risks involve damage to the human body which can impair the ability

of young children to learn.

     Despite the health risks associated with building a school on
a former garbage dump, defendants completed the approval process

for siting the schools within a few weeks time, totally disregarding
the community involvement process mandated by the environmental

equity provisions of the Industrial Property Remediation and Reuse

Act, R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5 and the public notice and comment

requirements of the Department Environmental Management's ("DEM")

Rules and Regulations for the Investigation and Remediation of

Hazardous Material Releases ("Remediation Regulations.")    State law

mandates that DEM provide abutting residents and other interested

parties an active role in DEM's review of the site investigation

and the proposed remediation work action plan submitted by the City

of Providence, Rhode Island ("City").     Abutters and the community

at large were not notified of their right to submit written comments

on the feasibility of the City's proposed remedy to contain and/or

treat hazardous materials on the dump site, thus sparing the

defendants having to respond in writing to such comments, in violation

of R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5 and Section 7.00 et seq. of the Remediation

Regulations.   Nor did DEM solicit information from or consider the

environmental equity issues of constructing public schools on an

old garbage dump on the affected community -- predominantly low income
and minority school age children -- in violation of the environmental

equity provisions of the Industrial Property Remediation and Reuse

Act, R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5.

     In addition to violating state hazardous waste laws, defendants

also violated plaintiffs' civil rights.   The students who will attend

these three schools are predominantly African American, Asian and

Latino.   Defendants intentionally sited (or approved the siting of)

the three schools on a site that poses serious health risks to future


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students of the schools, including exposure to lead, arsenic, total

petroleum hydrocarbons, methane, mercury, and volatile organic

compounds, knowing full well that the anticipated student body would

be made up of predominantly non-white students.   African American,

Asian and Latino students already suffer disproportionately from

a variety of health problems that could be exacerbated by exposures

to the hazardous materials that are found on the dump site.

Defendants' intentional and/or effectively discriminatory actions

on the basis of race and/or color and/or national origin of the

prospective students of the three schools violate Title VI of the

Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq. and implementing

regulations promulgated thereunder by the United States

Environmental Protection Agency, 40 C.F.R. §7.30 et seq., and the

United States Department of Education, 34 C.F.R. §100.1 et seq..

By permitting these three schools to be constructed on a former

garbage dump, defendants also violated state and federal

constitutional provisions that guarantee African American, Asian

and Latino students the right to attend schools as environmentally
safe as those attended by White students.   Defendants' actions

violate the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the 14th

Amendment of the United States Constitution and Article I of the

Rhode Island Constitution.

     Plaintiffs seek a declaratory judgment that defendants' actions

and inactions regarding the siting of the three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site violated the above referenced statutory

and constitutional provisions, and, further, seek preliminary and


                                 3
permanent injunctive relief against further construction and/or

operation of the three schools on the Springfield Street dump site.

                             JURISDICTION

     2.   This court has jurisdiction pursuant to R.I.G.L. §8-2-13

(general equity jurisdiction), R.I.G.L. §9-30-1 (declaratory

judgment jurisdiction), R.I.G.L. §9-30-2 (determination of rights

pursuant to state statute), R.I.G.L. §42-35-7 (declaratory judgment

jurisdiction regarding agency rules), and 42 U.S.C. §1983.

                               PARTIES

     3.   Plaintiff Hartford Park Tenants Association is an

unincorporated association of tenants who live at the Hartford Park

public housing project in Providence.       The Hartford Park public

housing project contains 388 apartments for low income families and

another 120 apartments for low income disabled or elderly persons.

 The vast majority of households with children of school age at

Hartford Park are either African American or Latino households.

The Hartford Park public housing project is located less than a mile

from the former garbage dump on Springfield Street where the three
schools are being built.

     4.   Plaintiff Debra A. Martin, a low income resident of

Providence, lives with her 10 year old son Michael J. Martin.   Michael

now attends the Flynn Elementary School and the following year Michael

will attend middle school.    In June, 1999, Michael was offered the

choice to attend the new elementary school under construction at

the Springfield Street dump site.     Plaintiff Debra A. Martin did

not want Michael to attend school on Springfield Street in part


                                  4
because the school is being built on a former garbage dump.

     5.   Plaintiff Sheila Wilhelm, a low income resident of

Providence, has three children of age to attend elementary school

or middle school.   Plaintiff Sheila Wilhelm's 8 year old daughter,

Mikaelah Wilhelm, attends the Asa Messer Elementary school.

Plaintiff Sheila Wilhelm's 10 year old son Joshua Wilhelm and 12

year old son Richard attend the San Miguel school in Providence.

     6.   Plaintiff Nicolas J. Marsella lives across from where the

middle school building is being built on Springfield Street, and

is an abutting resident of the Springfield Street dump site.

     7.   Defendant Rhode Island Department of Environmental

Management ("DEM") is a state agency which regulates, inter alia,

the clean up of hazardous waste sites and receives federal funds

in connection with DEM's hazardous waste programs pursuant to the

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, 42 U.S.C. §6901 et seq. and

other federal sources.   At all relevant times DEM's actions and

inactions were taken by DEM or its agents or employees under color

of state law.
     8.   Defendant City of Providence, Rhode Island ("City")

receives federal funds from a variety of sources, including funds

from the United States Department of Education to operate public

schools in the City.   At all relevant times the City's actions and

inactions were made by the City or its agents or employees under

color of state law.

     9.   Defendant Providence School Board ("PSB") operates and

administers the public school system in the City of Providence, and


                                 5
will operate and administer the three schools now being constructed

on the Springfield Street dump site.      PSB receives funds from the

United States Department of Education to operate public schools in

the City.    At all relevant times PSB's actions and inactions were

made by PSB or its agents or employees under color of state law.

     10.    Defendant Alan Sepe ("Sepe") is the Acting Director of

the Department of Public Property of the City of Providence.      Sepe

has held his post as Acting Director for several years,

notwithstanding Section 302(b) of the Providence Home Rule Charter

that limits without exception the term of an acting appointment to

90 days.    At all relevant times Sepe's actions and inactions were

made under color of state law.

              FACTS RELATING TO PROVIDENCE STUDENT BODY

     11.    Compared to the racial and ethnic composition of public

school students statewide, Providence's student body is

disproportionately composed of Non-White students (where "Non-White"

means students identified by racial and/or ethnic categories as being

other than White.)
     12.    In school year 1997-98, according to the Rhode Island Board

of Regents 1999 Information Works Report ("Information Works"),

approximately 77% of Rhode Island's public school population was

White and 23% Non-White (the non-white population consisting

approximately of 7% African American, 3% Asian, 12% Latino and 1%

Native American).

     13.    In school year 1997-98, according to Information Works,

approximately 23% of Providence's student body was White and 77%


                                   6
was Non-White (the Non-White population consisting approximately

of 23% African American, 11% Asian, 43% Latino and 1% Native

American).

     14.   In future years the student population in Providence public

schools will continue to be predominantly Non-White.

     15.   According to the Civil Rights Project of Harvard

University, since 1980, Rhode Island experienced the highest increase

in segregation of African American and White students in public

schools of all states with substantial African American student

enrollments.

     16.   The majority of public school students in Providence are

students from low income households.    In Providence, approximately

75% of the student body is eligible for government subsidized lunch

programs compared to 34% of students statewide, according to

Information Works.

     17.   In 1998, Providence's public school population was

projected to grow by approximately 9% over the next five years,

according to the Rhode Island Department of Education's 1999 Summary
of Necessity of Construction Projects.     Much of the growth in the

school's population is attributable to an influx of Latino families

with school age children into Providence.

     18.   Providence public school students are not assigned to

attend specific schools solely based on where they live.    The three

schools on Springfield Street have been promoted by the City and

PSB as "neighborhood schools."     However, students who will attend

the three schools at the Springfield Street dump site could live


                                  7
anywhere within the city limits of Providence.

     19.     School age children in Providence experience higher rates

of severe environmentally induced illnesses such as lead poisoning

and asthma than do students statewide.

     20.     In 1998, according to statistics maintained by the Rhode

Island Department of Health and reported in the 1999 Rhode Island

Kids Count Fact Book, approximately 31.1% of Providence's children

due to start kindergarten in the Fall of 2000 were found to have

elevated blood lead levels (in excess of 10 ug/dL), compared to 16.1%

of such children statewide.

     21.     In 1998, according to statistics from the Rhode Island

Department of Health, for all children tested for lead in the state,

approximately 19.8% of children in Providence were found to have

elevated blood lead levels (in excess of 10 ug/dL), compared to 10.9%

of children statewide.

     22.     In 1998, Providence had one of the highest rates of

hospitalization for asthma for children under 18 years of age in

the state.    According to statistics from the Rhode Island Department
of Health reprinted in the 1999 Rhode Island Kids Count Fact Book,

Providence's hospitalization rate of 4.2 per 1,000 children greatly

exceeds the statewide hospitalization rate of 2.6 per 1,000 children.

 Nationally, asthma hospitalization rates are three times higher

among African American children than among White children.

     23.     As of May, 1999, Providence children were more than twice

as likely to be malnourished than children statewide, according to

data from the Rhode Island Department of Health regarding


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participants in the state's Special Supplemental Food Program for

Women, Infants and Children ("WIC").      Under WIC, malnourished

children receive nutritious food, nutrition education and improved

access to health care.    In Providence, as of May, 1999,

approximately 20% of Providence children were on WIC and only 8.9%

of children statewide were on WIC.     Also, in Providence, as of May,

1999, African American and Asian children were, approximately, more

than three times more likely to be malnourished than White children.

                    FACTS RELATING TO DUMP SITE

     24.   On or about February 10, 1999, the City first announced

to the news media plans to construct three schools for 1,200 students

on the Springfield Street dump site.    The roughly triangular shaped

site for the three schools comprises approximately ten acres, and

is bounded by Springfield Street on the east, Hartford Avenue on

the north, and a roughly straight diagonal line running from the

intersection of Springfield Street and Seton Street towards the

intersection of Hartford Avenue and Milo Street.

     25.   The land surrounding the dump site is now used primarily
for residential purposes, with some commercial uses found along

Hartford Avenue.   An historic cemetery containing graves dating back

to the early 1800's directly abuts the site.

     26.   The dump site was originally an undeveloped wetland.   This

wetland area was originally divided into over 100 individual house

lots, but no houses were ever built and the house lots were unfenced.

     27.   Illegal dumping on the wetland began in the 1950's.    Over

the years the wetland became a dump site.   Some time in the mid 1960's


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the City assumed control of the dump and operated the dump until

the early 1970's.   While the City operated the dump the site remained

unfenced, and illegal dumping continued even after the City took

over the dump.

     28.   While the dump was in operation under the control of the

City, City garbage trucks deposited household trash there.   The City

dumped trash on a daily basis.   A bulldozer operated by a City worker

covered the dumped trash with soil.

     29.   In the mid-1970's, the dump was closed in response to

complaints by neighbors of noxious odors and rats.    Illegal dumping

continued after the dump was officially closed.

     30.   In the latter half of the 1970's compacted and ground up

cars (auto fluff) were found to have been dumped on portions of the

site.   Polychlorinated Biphenols (PCB's) were also found to have

been dumped on the site.

     31.   After the dump was closed, plants and trees sprouted on

the soil deposited over the dumped trash.     By February, 1999, the

site had become a wooded area.
        FACTS RELATING TO DECISION TO SITE SCHOOL ON DUMP

     32.   Shortly after the City's February 10, 1999 media

announcement, people who resided near the dump site contacted the

media to inform the public that the site was an old garbage dump.

     33.   On February 17, 1999, defendant Sepe stated to the

Providence Journal that if tests came back showing some form of

contamination or if other problems were found on the site, the City

would not build the schools there.


                                  10
     34.    On or about March 6, 1999, the City sent bulldozers to

the dump site to clear trees and vegetation.      No defendant gave

abutting residents advance warning that bulldozers would be clearing

the site.

     35.    On information and belief, as of March 6, 1999, the City

did not own the land where the schools were to be built, nor did

the City have a building permit to build the schools at the Springfield

Street dump site.

     36.    On or about March 10, 1999, representatives from the City

and DEM met privately to discuss the results of the City's preliminary

soil tests.    Those tests found levels of lead, arsenic, and total

petroleum hydrocarbons that exceeded safety standards known as

"Method 1 Residential Direct Exposure Criteria."

     37.    Even after learning about the presence of unsafe levels

of hazardous materials at the Springfield Street dump site, the City

decided to proceed with plans to build the three schools on the dump

site.

     38.    On or about March 19, 1999, DEM ordered the City to
immediately stop work at the dump site, after DEM discovered that

the City had caused contaminated soil to be excavated and moved to

another location on the dump site.

     39.    On or about March 25, 1999, the City submitted a site

investigation report to DEM.    The report was signed on behalf of

the City by defendant Sepe.

     40.    The March 25, 1999 site investigation report stated that

the City's preferred method to clean up the dump site was to contain


                                  11
on site the hazardous waste dumped over the years by depositing two

feet of clean fill over the non-building areas of the dump site;

excavating, treating on site (by sifting) and removing the

contaminated soil under the elementary school; and, installing a

soil gas collection system in the two middle schools.

     41.   Section 7.07 of DEM's Remediation Regulations required

the City, PSB and/or Sepe (hereafter collectively referred to as

"municipal defendants") to notify all abutting property owners and

tenants prior to the commencement of the site investigation field

activities that a site investigation was about to occur.

     42.   Upon information and belief, the municipal defendants

failed to notify all abutting property owners and tenants prior to

the commencement of the site investigation field activities that

a site investigation was about to occur at the Springfield Street

dump site.

     43.   On April 2, 1999, the City submitted to DEM a remediation

action work plan which detailed the City's plans to implement the

preferred remedy set forth in the site investigation report.       The
plan submitted on April 2, 1999 was not complete, and additions were

made to the plan on or about May 3, 1999 and May 9, 1999.

     44.   R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5(1) requires that abutting residents

be notified when a work plan for a site investigation is proposed.

     45.   Upon information and belief, neither the municipal

defendants nor DEM notified residents abutting the site that the

City proposed to DEM a work plan for a site investigation in connection

with the proposal to build three schools at the Springfield Street


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dump site.

     46.   Section 7.07 of DEM's Remediation Regulations required

the municipal defendants to notify abutting property owners of the

findings of the site investigation and any proposed remedial

alternative which includes on-site treatment and/or containment of

hazardous materials at part of the final remedy.

     47.   Upon information and belief, the municipal defendants

failed to notify abutting property owners of the Springfield Street

dump site of the findings of the site investigation and the City's

proposed remedial alternative which included on-site treatment

and/or containment of hazardous materials at part of the final remedy.

     48.   On or about April 9, 1999, DEM issued to the City a Remedial

Decision Letter whereby DEM determined that the site investigation

of the Springfield Street dump site was complete and, further,

approved the conceptual remedy proposed by the City in the site

investigation report.

     49.   Section 7.09 of DEM's Remediation Regulations requires

DEM to afford the public an opportunity to review and comment upon
the technical feasibility of a preferred remedial alternative that

includes on-site treatment and/or containment of hazardous materials

before issuing a Remedial Decision Letter.

     50.   Upon information and belief, DEM failed to afford the

publican opportunity to review and comment upon the technical

feasibility of the City's preferred remedial alternative for the

Springfield Street dump site which included on-site treatment and/or

containment of hazardous materials before DEM issued a Remedial


                                  13
Decision Letter to the City.

     51.   R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5(3) requires notification to abutting

residents and other interested parties when DEM determines that a

site investigation is complete.

     52.   Upon information and belief, defendants failed to notify

abutting residents of the Springfield Street dump site and/or any

other interested party (other than the City) that DEM determined

on April 9, 1999, that the City's site investigation of the

Springfield Street dump site was complete and that DEM approved the

conceptual remedy proposed by the City in the site investigation

report.

     53.   More than two weeks after DEM determined that the site

investigation of the Springfield Street dump was complete and

approved the City's proposed conceptual remedy, DEM and the City

sponsored a public meeting on April 26, 1999 at 5 PM in the City

Council chambers to discuss the remediation action work plan.

     54.   Upon information and belief, abutting residents of the

Springfield Street dump site were mailed a flyer about the April
26, 1999 meeting only a few days before the meeting was to take place.

     55.   Upon information and belief, neither abutting residents

nor members of the general public were informed prior to the April

26, 1999 meeting where a copy of the City's site investigation report

or remediation action work plan could be copied or inspected.

     56.   The April 26, 1999 meeting was sparsely attended.     Few

people attended the meeting.   The April 26th meeting was held just

after the work day ended and the location of the meeting was not


                                  14
in the neighborhood where the schools were to be built.

     57.   Within days of the April 26, 1999 meeting, the City resumed

construction at the Springfield Street dump site even though DEM

had not yet approved the City's proposed remediation action work

plan, even though the City did not own the land at the Springfield

Street dump site, lacked a building permit for the schools and, had

not take ownership of the site by eminent domain.

     58.   Opposition to siting the three schools on the dump site

was voiced in meetings of the Providence School Board.        Members

of the public expressed concern at School Board meetings about the

safety of building the schools on a former garbage dump.

     59.   At a PSB meeting on April 26, 1999, a DEM official responded

to the safety concerns raised by members of the public.      Greg Fine

from DEM was quoted in the Providence Journal as stating that the

amounts of the contaminants found on the Springfield Street dump

site were "the same levels you could find in your backyard" in

Providence.

     60.   On April 26, 1999, the Providence School Board voted 4-3
along racial lines to reject the issuance of bonds for constructing

the schools on the Springfield Street dump site.    The Board's three

white board members voted to approve the issuance of bonds even though

the City had still not finalized all details of the remediation work

plan by that date.   Later the same night, the Providence School Board

voted unanimously to table consideration of the issuance of bonds

for the three schools until its May 10, 1999 meeting.

     61.   During the last week of April construction activity picked


                                  15
up.   Soil was excavated and sifted at the site.   Soil was excavated

immediately next to the marked historic cemetery that adjoins the

site.

      62.   R.I.G.L. §23-18-11 prohibits any construction, excavation

or other ground disturbing activity to take place within 25 feet

of a recorded historic cemetery unless said activity is first approved

by the City in accordance with R.I.G.L. §23-18-11.1; or,

alternatively, if the boundaries of the historic cemetery are

adequately documented and that the proposed activity will not damage

or destructively alter the cemetery through erosion, flooding,

filling or encroachment.

      63.   Upon information and belief, the municipal defendants

never sought or obtained approval to undertake construction activity

for the three schools within 25 feet of the historic cemetery pursuant

to R.I.G.L. §23-18-11.1.

      64.   Upon information and belief, the construction activity

for the three schools within 25 feet of the marked historic cemetery

will damage or destructively alter the cemetery through erosion,
flooding, filling or encroachment.

      65.   On May 4, 1999 a special meeting of the Providence School

Board was held regarding the issuance of bonds for the three schools.

 Again, the Providence School Board voted along racial lines to reject

the issuance of bonds for constructing the schools on the Springfield

Street dump site by a vote of 5-3.     The Board's three white board

members voted a second time as a bloc to approve the issuance of

bonds even though the City had still not finalized all details of


                                  16
the remediation work plan by that date.

     66.     The May 4, 1999 Providence School Board vote was to have

resulted in a cessation of work at the Springfield Street dump site,

according to a statement made by Sepe to the Providence Journal right

after the vote was taken.    However, the City continued construction

activity on the three schools.

     67.     On or about May 10, 1999, the Providence School Board

reversed itself and voted 7-1 to approve the issuance of bonds to

finance construction of the three schools on the Springfield Street

dump site.     This vote came a day after the City submitted a complete

remediation action work plan to DEM for approval.

     68.     During the second week of May, 1999, neighbors living

adjacent to the site became ill from the stench of odors emanating

from the dump.    One person was taken to a hospital because she could

not breathe; another person became so nauseated by the odors that

she threw up.

     69.     Abutting residents complained to DEM during the second

week in May, 1999 about the odors from the site.   DEM sent an inspector
to investigate the complaints. DEM failed to order the City to stop

work, despite the fact that as of the date of the inspector's

investigation DEM had still not approved the remediation action work

plan.

     70.     DEM finally approved the remediation action work plan on

or about June 4, 1999.   By that date, the first floor of the elementary

school building had already been erected and work on the second floor

had begun; and foundation work on the middle school building had


                                   17
been started.

     71.    R.I.G.L. §23-10.14-5 requires DEM to "consider the effects

that clean ups would have on the populations surrounding each site

and shall consider the issues of environmental equity for low income

and racial minority populations."

     72.    Upon information and belief, DEM failed to consider the

effects that construction of the three public schools on the

Springfield Street dump site would have on the populations

surrounding the site and that will attend the three schools.

     73.    Upon information and belief, DEM failed to consider the

issues of environmental equity for the low income and racial minority

school age population that will attend the three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site.

     74.    The City did not take the land where the three schools

were being constructed by eminent domain until or about June 15,

1999.   By that time, construction on both school buildings was well

underway.

     75.    On or about June 29, 1999, the Providence Journal reported
that City still had not issued a building permit for the three schools

under construction on the Springfield Street dump site.

         FACTS RELATING TO HEALTH HAZARDS AT THE DUMP SITE

     76.    A garbage dump remains biologically active for a period

of 30 to 50 years after the last items of garbage are disposed therein.

 The biological activity results in the decomposition of garbage

disposed in the dump.

     77.    The biological activity in an abandoned garbage dump


                                  18
produces a variety of toxic substances, including methane and sulfur

compounds.     These toxic substances are in addition to any toxic

substances that were discarded in the garbage dump during the dump's

use.

       78.   The most explosive gas produced from the biological

activity in an abandoned garbage dump is methane.      Gases such as

methane will be produced over the entire surface of the garbage dump.

 The City proposes to vent soil gases produced at the Springfield

Street dump site to the surface through soil gas collection pipes

installed under the building housing two middle schools.

       79.   The decomposition of garbage in an abandoned garbage dump

causes the soil in the dump to shift.    Shifting soil underneath the

middle school building creates a risk that one of the soil gas

collection pipes will break, causing methane gas to accumulate

undetected underneath the building.     The undetected collection of

methane gas creates a risk of an explosion.

       80.   The decomposition of garbage in an abandoned dump will

also produce noxious odors, especially on warm days.    The human nose
can detect the presence of substances that cause odors at levels

that are not measurable.     More likely than not, classrooms at the

three public schools will be fouled by noxious odors.

       81.   The site investigation report submitted by the City to

DEM indicated the presence of several toxic substances on the

Springfield Street Dump Site.     Levels of lead, arsenic and total

petroleum hydrocarbons in excess of safety standards known as "Method

1 Residential Direct Exposure Criteria" were found on the site.


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     82. The site investigation report also revealed the presence

of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's) and mercury on the Springfield

Street Dump Site.

     83.   Childhood lead poisoning leads to lowered IQ, inability

to concentrate, irritability and memory loss.   At blood lead levels

in excess of 30ug/dL exposed children drop out of high school at

rates five to seven times higher than unexposed children.

     84.   Chronic exposure to arsenic causes peripheral nerve damage

resulting in pain, numbness, tingling in the hands and feet, muscle

weakness and loss of coordination in a child's hands and feet.   Long

term exposure to arsenic can also cause eczema, other skin rashes,

discolorations and skin cancer.    If inhaled, chronic exposure to

arsenic dust can increase the risk of lung cancer.

     85.   Petroleum hydrocarbons and VOC's are known to cause

peripheral nerve damage, decreased activity in the brain, and

permanent brain damage at low levels with repeated exposure.

Additionally, exposures to VOC's at low levels result in decreased

learning ability.   Children are more susceptible to the harmful
effects of repeated exposure to VOC's at low levels than adults.

     86.   Mercury poisoning from chronic inhalation of mercury fumes

(mercury fumes can occur at room temperature) causes irritability,

memory loss, inability to concentrate, twitching and trembling,

inflammation of the mouth and gums, scaly rash on the hands and feet,

increased sweating, sensitivity to bright lights, sleeplessness and

weight loss.

     87.   Malnourished children, when exposed to heavy metals such


                                  20
as lead, mercury and arsenic, are likely to absorb larger amounts

of these metals and become poisoned.

     88.   Providence school age children already suffer

disproportionately from such health problems as lead poisoning

asthma, and malnutrition compared to school age children statewide.



     89.   African American, Asian, and Latino school age children

in Providence suffer even more than White school age children in

Providence from such health problems as lead poisoning and asthma.

     90.   Lead poisoning is exacerbated by additional exposures to

lead.

     91.   Asthma is exacerbated by additional exposures to total

petroleum hydrocarbons and volatile organic compounds.

     92.   Students at the three schools, who are disproportionately

African American, Asian and Latino, will be exposed to environmental

hazards such as exposure to lead, arsenic, total petroleum

hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds, mercury and noxious odors.

     93.   The City's proposed remedy to contain the environmental
hazards at the Springfield Street dump site is not adequate to protect

prospective students and the public against exposures to toxic

substances found at the dump site, both now and especially in future

years.

     94.   Defendants' actions and inactions with respect to

approving and implementing the City's plans to construct three

schools on the Springfield Street dump constitute intentional

discrimination the basis of race and/or color and/or national origin


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of the prospective students of said schools.

     95.   Defendants' actions and inactions with respect to

approving and implementing the City's plans to construct three

schools on the Springfield Street dump site have the effect of

discriminating on the basis of race and/or color and/or national

origin of the prospective students of said schools.

     96.   Plaintiffs have been irreparably harmed by defendants'

actions and inactions with regards to siting the three public schools

on the Springfield Street dump site.    Plaintiffs have no adequate

remedy at law to redress the irreparable harm caused by defendants'

actions and inactions.

                          CAUSES OF ACTION

                  COUNT 1 -- Environmental Equity

     97.   Plaintiffs reallege and incorporate paragraphs 1-96.

     98.   Defendant DEM's actions and inactions with respect to

approving the City's plans to construct three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site violated R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5.

       COUNT 2 -- Hazardous Waste Remediation Regulations
     99.   Plaintiffs reallege and incorporate paragraphs 1-98.

     100. Defendants actions and inactions with respect to approving

and implementing the City's plans to construct three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site violated DEM's own Rules and Regulations

for the Investigation and Remediation of Hazardous Material Releases,

as Amended August 1996 ("Remediation Regulations").

   COUNT 3 -- Non-Discrimination in Federally Funded Programs

     101. Plaintiffs reallege and incorporate paragraphs 1-100.


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     102. Defendants actions and inactions with respect to approving

and implementing the City's plans to construct three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site violated Title VI of the Civil Rights

Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq. and regulations promulgated

thereunder by the United States Environmental Protection Agency,

40 CFR §7.10 et seq. (applicable to defendant DEM), and the United

States Department of Education, 34 CFR §100.1 et seq.   (applicable

to the City and PSB), all actionable pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983.

             COUNT 4 -- Denial of Due Process of Law

     103. Plaintiffs reallege and incorporate paragraphs 1-102.

     104. Defendants actions and inactions with respect to approving

and implementing the City's plans to construct three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site deny plaintiffs property without due

process of law, in violation of the 14th Amendment to the U.S.

Constitution, actionable pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983, and Article

1, §2 of the Rhode Island Constitution.

              COUNT 5 -- Denial of Equal Protection

     105. Plaintiffs reallege and incorporate paragraphs 1-104.
     106. Defendants actions and inactions with respect to approving

and implementing the City's plans to construct three schools on the

Springfield Street dump site deprives plaintiffs equal protection

of the laws, in violation of the 14th Amendment to the U.S.

Constitution, actionable pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §1983, and Article

1, §2 of the Rhode Island Constitution.



          WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs ask this Court to:


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     1.   Assume jurisdiction of this case;

     2.   Declare that defendant DEM violated R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5

by failing to implement the community involvement process mandated

by said R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5;

     3.   Declare that defendant DEM violated R.I.G.L. §23-19.14-5

by failing to consider the issues of environmental equity for the

low income and minority students that will attend the three schools;

     4.   Enjoin DEM to rescind its approval of the City's

application to construct the three schools on the Springfield Street

dump site and to require DEM to re-open the agency's review of said

application;

     5.   Preliminarily enjoin DEM to issue a cease and desist order

directing the municipal defendants to stop all construction activity

at the Springfield Street dump site pending DEM's review of the City's

application and DEM's complying with the community involvement

process mandated by law;

     6.   Preliminarily and permanently enjoin DEM from taking

action to approve any application from the municipal defendants to
construct any public school on the Springfield Street dump site unless

and until DEM:

     a.) utilizes a community involvement process containing all

     of the components required by R.I.G.L. §§23-19.14-5; and

     b.) solicits comments on and considers the issues of

     environmental equity for low income and minority populations

     affected by the construction of the three schools on the

     Springfield Street dump site;


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     7.    Declare that the DEM and the municipal defendants failed

to comply with DEM's Remediation Regulations when the municipal

defendants applied to DEM for permission to construct the three public

schools on the Springfield Street site;

     8.    Preliminarily and permanently enjoin the municipal

defendants from taking any further action to construct the three

public schools on the Springfield Street dump site until the

defendants comply with the public notice and comment requirements

of DEM's Remediation Regulations and obtain approval from DEM to

construct said public schools in compliance with said Regulations;

     9.    Declare that the defendants' decisions to approve and

implement plans to construct the three schools on the Springfield

Street dump site violate Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

and/or the equal protection and/or due process clauses of the 14th

Amendment to the United States Constitution and Article I Section

2 of the Rhode Island Constitution.

     10.   Enjoin the municipal defendants from taking any further

action to construct the three public schools on the Springfield Street
dump site;

     11.   Enjoin DEM from approving construction of the three public

schools on the Springfield Street dump site;

     12.   Enjoin the City and PSB to find a new site or sites for

the three public schools;

     13.   Award plaintiffs their costs incurred in connection with

this action pursuant to 42 USC §1988; and

     14.   Order such other relief as deemed appropriate by the Court.


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     PLAINTIFFS

     BY THEIR ATTORNEY,




     Steven Fischbach, #3259

     Rhode Island Legal Services
     56 Pine Street - 4th Flr.
     Providence, R.I. 02903
     401-274-2652 X-164
     401-453-0310 (FAX)




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