Hmmm… Why is Rainbow/Republic refusing to fully enclo$$$e?




looking through crack in fencePeeking through cracks in the fence, pressing one’s ear to the wall, one can deduce what’s going on in the lawsuit between Rainbow Disposal and Huntington Beach’s Ocean View School District DESPITE the confidentiality of the negotiations – given the simple fact that a settlement has still not been reached, and the matter is on its way to a jury trial later this year (where Rainbow will surely faceplant.)

There is a distance between the “stipulated agreement” that was FORCED on Rainbow by the South Coast Air Quality Management District last year, and what the school district and neighborhood have been rightfully seeking since 2013 – and that distance entails several million dollars, which, if saved, can be pocketed by Rainbow principals.  We’ll get to that in a bit.


Here is what the OVSD has been asking for in their lawsuit that goes BEYOND the stipulated agreement, all of which is quite reasonable and necessary for the students’ and neighbors’ health:

  • OVSD wants 100% enclosure of the facility. (The stipulated agreement doesn’t require that.)
  • Only 5% of the structure should consist of doors that can open.
  • The doors should be AUTOMATIC, not “pneumatic” or human-controlled, so that they are not left open now and then accidentally while toxic concrete dust goes floating into the breeze.
  • There must be “negative air pressure” on the doors so that when they’re opened (for trucks etc.) the air containing possible hazardous particles gets SUCKED BACK IN.
  • The air handling must include both state-of-the-art VENTILATION and FILTRATION.
  • Everything must be enclosed, including “inert materials” that Rainbow currently keeps outside, such as dirt, mulch, asphalt, gravel, and the dread crushed concrete.
  • OVSD wants Rainbow to pay for the air conditioning at Oak View School which has been ruined by decades of seagull infestation many times worse than any other school in this beach town (most of which are much closer to the beach.)
  • And finally, OVSD wants Rainbow to provide an “NPR” room, or enclosed lunch area, for the school – for decades now whenever the stench is unbearable the students have been forced to eat in the hallways.

These are all the demands of OVSD which go beyond the SCAQMD stipulated agreement, and since we know that there has been NO SETTLEMENT after two and a half years, we can only conclude that Rainbow is balking at some or all of these demands.  And why would that be?

Jeff Snow, Rainbow’s senior municipal service manager.

Jeff Snow, Rainbow’s senior municipal service manager, now named “Businessman of the Year” by the kleptocratic HB Chamber of Commerce.

Obviously, addressing those demands will cost money, and it’s normal for a corporation to want to spend as little as possible – reprehensible but understandable to resist spending more than necessary even for the benefit of the community’s health.

BUT, as the “Garbaginati” reminded us the other day, during the process of selling itself off to Republic Services, Rainbow was forced to put aside $16.8 million into an escrow account to cover any cleanup costs they had incurred.  So, it’s not like they don’t have the money sitting around specifically for this purpose.

Well, as it turns out, whatever part of that escrow account is NOT spent on cleanup can be split and pocketed by the old, employee owners of Rainbow – your Susan Gordons, your Jerry Moffatts, your Jeff Snows.  A nearly irresistible motivation for doing it all on the cheap, wouldn’t you say?

And sure enough, the amount Rainbow promises to spend on remediation has gotten smaller and smaller over the years since 2009 – starting at $20 million and now ending at $10 million after they got their mild orders from SCAQMD.  How unlikely is it that the real reason Rainbow is refusing to settle with OVSD is the $6.8 million difference between what they are required to do now and what they really SHOULD do?

rainbow timeline

$6.8 million, to split up and enjoy.  It’s going to take a jury trial to PRY doing the right thing out of these covetous weasels.


nixon paranoidMeanwhile to all appearances Rainbow brass have been hunkered down unhealthily in their war room like a gaggle of paranoid Nixons.  Garbaginati told the story of the company’s stormy relationship with their rival trash haulers CC&R, and how the latter keeps winning huge settlements against them for their crooked business practices.

Apparently it’s now an article of faith within Rainbow’s boardroom that there MUST be a connection between their two persecutors – their mean rivals who keep suing them successfully for their cheating, and the school district and neighborhood who, inexplicably after decades of passivity, are now fighting them bare-knuckles for their health and dignity.

epting smartassWe can be sure of this because Rainbow’s deranged propagandist Chris Epting has been hinting at this connection with no proof, for at least a year.  Forever promising some sort of bombshell exposé, poor mad Chris has been sent by those he admires, to find the Holy Grail of some sort of proof of collusion, but finds himself unable to do anything but shout words like “corrupt” over and over.

Half of Huntington Beach wonders what Chris is getting from Rainbow to keep up this wacky crusade hour after hour, day after day.  Knowing him as I do, I doubt he’s getting paid by anything but the chance to feel important, and an opportunity to lash out endlessly at a public servant who had the gall to snub him – OVSD’s feisty president Gina Clayton-Tarvin.

On the other hand, how symbiotic is the relationship between this unbalanced columnist and this irresponsible company, when they actually use his online ravings as EVIDENCE in their filings?  LOLOL… Click for larger image, and see the “exhibit” stamp on this printout from Chris’ blog… ROTFLMAO


Vern signing off… FOR NOW!

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.