Formal Enforcement Actions Issued
Formal Enforcement Actions Settled or Resolved
Superior Court Actions Issued
Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved
This report includes formal enforcement actions issued or resolved by the Office of Compliance & Inspection for the month of August 2007. This report is intended to inform the public of certain compliance/enforcement activities performed in the preceding month to protect the public's health, safety, welfare and the environment.
Formal Enforcement actions are taken to achieve compliance with law/regulations; remediate environmental damage; restore natural resources to appropriate conditions; impose penalties that capture the gravity of the situation and any economic benefit gained by the alleged violator; and deter similar actions in the future. Formal enforcement is generally in the form of a Notice of Violation ("NOV") that alleges certain facts and violations, contains orders to resolve the alleged violations, contains an assessed penalty with supporting documentation regarding what factors RIDEM used to determine the penalty, and, by law, allows a respondent the ability to appeal or contest the NOV to the Department's Administrative Adjudication Division ("AAD"). Since most NOVs are contested cases, RIDEM does not generally discuss the case with the public while the matter is awaiting hearing or pending negotiated settlement. NOVs are subject to release under the Access to Public Records law in Rhode Island. A copy of an individual NOV may be obtained through RIDEM's Office of Customer and Technical Assistance. The OC&I often resolves formal enforcement actions through negotiated settlement agreements prior to hearing before the AAD.
August 21, 2007 - The OC&I alleges that the Respondent(s) in the following three referenced cases are in violation of RIDEM's Rules and Regulations Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Individual Sewage Disposal Systems ("the ISDS Regulations"). The violations pertain to the overflow of sewage to the surface of the ground from the individual sewage disposal system ("ISDS") and/or the failure of the ISDS that is located on the property. In each case OC&I issued at least one Notice of Intent to Enforce ("NOI") to the Respondent(s). The NOI required the Respondent(s) to take specific corrective actions to resolve the violation. In each case the Respondent(s) failed to comply with the requirements of the NOI. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondent(s) to cease the discharge of sewage, pump the ISDS as needed to prevent overflows and/or to repair the ISDS.
OC&I assessed the following administrative penalties against each named Respondent: Alfred and Carol Lewis ($600.00); Ralph and Bernadette Groves ($2,000.00); and Domenic Bitto, Jr. ($400.00).
August 29, 2007 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. 2007 436 WP x-ref 07-30 re: OK Floors, Ltd. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of the Water Pollution Act and RIDEM's Water Quality Regulations. On April 4, 2007 the Town of Coventry Public Works Director conducted an inspection at the Ocean State Job Lot on 280 Washington Street in Coventry during a rain storm. The inspection revealed that pollutants (in the form of floor wax) were discharged to an unnamed stream that is a tributary to the Pawtuxet River. The discharge caused a whitish discoloration in the unnamed stream that extended at least 200 feet. The Town of Coventry official spoke with the Respondent whose owner stated that his company cleaned the floors of the Ocean State Job Lot building the previous night and that 2 gallons of a water based floor wax was dumped down the storm drain grate in the parking lot. On May 4, 2007 OC&I issued a Notice of Intent to Enforce to the Respondent advising the Respondent of the violation and that OC&I would be issuing a Notice of Violation and assessing a monetary penalty. In the NOV, OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $2,500.00.
August 30, 2007 - OC&I/Air File No. 07-05 re: Raytheon Company for property located at 1847 West Main Road in the Town of Portsmouth. The Respondent operates a facility at this location that is considered to be a stationary source subject to RIDEM Air Pollution Control ("APC") Regulations. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Clean Air Act and the APC Regulations. The violation pertains to Respondent's installation of two boilers rated at more than 5 million ("MM") Btu/hr without first having applied for and obtaining a minor source permit from RIDEM's Office of Air Resources ("OAR") in noncompliance with APC Regulation No. 9, operating the boilers without approval and operating one of the boilers without a required continuous emission monitor. OAR discovered the alleged noncompliance during an inspection of Respondent's facility on or about 24 May 2006. At the time of the inspection, the OAR found that Respondent had installed the boilers between 2001 and 2002. In addition, the OAR found that one of the boilers lacked a necessary opacity monitor and an audio alarm in noncompliance with APC Regulation No. 6. Following the inspection, the Respondent filed applications on 21 July 2006 with the OAR to obtain a minor source permit for the boilers and notified the OAR on 13 September 2006 that the required opacity monitor had been installed. The OAR issued a minor source permit to Respondent on 9 February 2007. In the NOV, the OC&I assessed an administrative penalty in the amount of $16,370.00 for Respondent's noncompliance.
August 30, 2007 - OC&I/Hazardous Waste File No. 06-065 re: Swarovski North America, LTD for property located at One Kenney Drive, Assessor's Plat 13, Lot 50 in the City of Cranston. The Respondent operates a manufacturing facility at this location. OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Hazardous Waste Management ("the Hazardous Waste Regulations") and applicable sections of Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations pertaining to the management of hazardous waste. The violations pertain to Respondent's failure to place an accumulation start date on a container of hazardous waste in storage, storing a container of hazardous waste for more than 90 days without a permit, failing to determine if wastes generated at the facility meet the definition of a hazardous waste, failing to meet all of the hazardous waste manifest requirements by forwarding a copy to the destination state as required, failing to provide the requisite hazardous waste training to one of Respondent's employees that manages hazardous waste, failing to ensure that all fire protection equipment is tested and maintained as necessary and failing to keep all containers of universal waste closed as required. In the NOV the OC&I ordered the Respondent to achieve compliance with the Hazardous Waste Regulations and assessed an administrative penalty in the amount of $9,500.00.
August 31, 2007 - OC&I/Solid Waste File No. 06-001 re: Coastal Recycling, Inc. for Respondent's solid waste management facility located at 431 Allens Avenue, Assessor's Plat 55, Lots 427 and 430 in the City of Providence. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act, RIDEM's Solid Waste Regulations, and conditions of Respondent's solid waste management facility registration for processing and managing construction & demolition ("C&D") debris. The violations pertain to Respondent's receiving solid waste at the facility other than C&D debris without first obtaining the appropriate license, failing to operate the facility in conformity with the facility's approved operating and engineering plans, exceeding the facility's storage limit of 300 tons of C&D debris, failing to correct drainage problems, failing to address fire control and prevention provisions, failing to contain solid waste leachate, failing to provide required plans to the RIDEM, failing to obtain approval of the facility's fire protection plan from the local fire chief and failing to maintain a required buffer zone between processed and unprocessed C&D debris and the property line of the facility. The RIDEM attempted to obtain compliance by the Respondent through informal enforcement letters issued in July and December 2003, May 2005 and through facility inspections in 2005 and 2006. The Respondent's registration expired on March 1, 2004. On 19 October 2006, in response to Respondent's registration renewal application, RIDEM issued a denial letter to the Respondent and ordered final closure of the facility. Respondent filed an appeal of RIDEM's denial of registration renewal and the appeal is pending before the AAD. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the removal of all solid waste from the facility that is not temporarily stored in a vehicle or proper receptacle for less than 72 hours and assessed an administrative penalty for Respondent's noncompliance in the amount of $68,750.00.
August 31, 2007 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. WP 07-10 re: Town of West Warwick, Robert Houghton, and Alliance General Contracting, Inc. The Town of West Warwick is the owner and operator of the West Warwick Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility located at 1 Pontiac Avenue in the Town of West Warwick. The Facility generates composted sludge product as part of its regular permitted operations, which must be distributed to end users pursuant to an Operation and Maintenance Manual approved by DEM and used in accordance with a User's Guide. The OC&I alleges that the Respondents are in violation of the RIDEM O & M Regulations and/or the RIDEM Sludge Regulations. The violation pertains to the improper distribution and use of composted sludge product on a residential lot located on Provident Place in the Town of Coventry. The OC&I alleges that the composted sludge product was disposed as fill rather than used as a soil amendment as required in the User's Guide. On September 6, 2005 and September 12, 2005 RIDEM conducted inspections of the property and found that the composted sludge was disposed on the property to a depth of 2 feet and within 1,000 feet of a private drinking water well and within 600 feet of a residential dwelling. RIDEM reviewed distribution records from the Town of West Warwick that revealed that 70 separate loads of composted sludge product (over 1,000 cubic yards) was transported by West Warwick officials to the property between May 11, 2005 and July 26, 2005. Respondent Robert Houghton (the owner of the property at the time) informed RIDEM's inspector that he disposed all but 90 cubic yards on the property. The permissible amount of composted sludge product that should have been used on the property in accordance with the User's Guide was 80 cubic yards given the application rate of a 1-2 inch layer and the area the product was used. Respondent Robert Houghton transferred title to the property shortly thereafter to Respondent Alliance General Contracting Inc. Upon information and belief, Robert Houghton and Alliance General Contracting Inc. were involved in the residential lot development. The Town of West Warwick made no effort to determine the volume of composted sludge product that was required for the proposed use as it is supposed to do under its approved Operations and Maintenance Manual. RIDEM reviewed analytical test results of the composted sludge product collected on April 4, 2005 and July 8, 2005 and determined the presence of arsenic at a concentration of 23 ppm and 10 ppm, respectively. These concentrations exceed the residential direct exposure criteria of 7ppm as stated in RIDEM's Site Remediation Regulations. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondents to take one of the following actions: remove the composted sludge product from the property and properly dispose and/or reuse the composted sludge in accordance with the RIDEM Sludge Regulations; blend the composted sludge product on the property with clean soil and demonstrate that the resultant mixture complies with the RIDEM Sludge Regulations; or conduct an assessment consistent with the soil objectives in RIDEM's Site Remediation Regulations to demonstrate that the composted sludge product does not present a risk. OC&I assessed the Town of West Warwick an administrative penalty of $23,750.00 and assessed each of the Respondents, jointly and severally, an administrative penalty of $64,460.00.
August 6, 2007 - OC&I/UST File No. 04-02881 re: J&M Service Center, Inc. and West Shore Realty Associates, Ltd. for property located at 1710 West Shore road, Assessor's Plat 358, Lot 320 in the City of Warwick. On October 28, 2004 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondents alleging that the Respondents violated RIDEM's UST Regulations. The violations pertained to Respondents' deactivation of the annular space sensor for a 6,000-gallon gasoline UST at the facility and the piping collection sump sensors for 3 gasoline USTs in addition to Respondents' failure to notify RIDEM of the deactivation, failure to utilize the UST continuous leak monitoring system to perform a 0.2 gallon per hour leak test for 2 of Respondents' USTs on a monthly basis, and failure to perform tank tightness testing for 2 USTs during the year 2003. RIDEM's inspection determined that one of the USTs at the facility had been filled beyond 95% of its capacity indicating a malfunction of the overfill protection device for the UST. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondents to achieve compliance with the UST Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $8,350.00. The Respondents did not file an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. In lieu of proceeding to Superior Court to enforce the NOV, the Respondents and the OC&I executed a consent agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondents documented that they complied with the order portion of the NOV and agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $6,680.00. The OC&I allowed the Respondents to pay $680.00 upon execution of the Consent Agreement and allowed the remaining $6,000.00 to be paid in 12 consecutive monthly payments of $500.00.
August 22, 2007 - OC&I/Site Remediation File No. 04-01 re: The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations Department of Transportation for property located at the former Quonset Auto Body within the proposed State Highway, Route 403 Relocation Project, Post Road Interchange Phase 1, Assessor's Plat 138, Lot 82 in the Town of North Kingstown. On November 18, 2004 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the property in question became listed with RIDEM pursuant to the Rules and Regulations for the Investigation and Remediation of Hazardous Material Releases ("the Remediation Regulations"). This listing was due to identified concentrations of petroleum products and hazardous materials (arsenic and lead) on the property that were found in excess of the limits set forth in the Remediation Regulations. The Respondent was advised of the listing and subsequently completed a Remedial Action Work Plan ("RAWP") to address the problem. RIDEM approved the RAWP and a revised RAWP that required removal of the contaminated soil on the property. Subsequent inspections by RIDEM and review of contractor reports revealed that the Respondent did not remove all of the contaminated soil and did not fully comply with the RAWP. The RIDEM Office of Waste Management ("OWM") issued a Notice of Intent to Enforce to the Respondent on 7 January 2004 identifying the non-compliance and requiring the Respondent to complete all requirements of the RAWP. The Respondent attempted to address RIDEM's concerns in correspondence dated 4 February 2004 and again on 22 October 2004 but in both events RIDEM found Respondent's answers inadequate and determined that the Respondent did not complete remedial actions as set forth in the approved RAWP. The violations cited by OC&I in the NOV pertain to Respondent's failure to comply with the Remediation Regulations governing the management of unpermitted releases of hazardous materials, failure to apply for approval of any modifications that the performing party finds necessary during design, construction or implementation of the remedy and failure to perform in accordance with the Remedial Action Approval issued by the RIDEM. In the NOV, the Respondent was ordered to achieve compliance with the RAWP. The OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $35,669.00. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to hearing, the Respondent and the OC&I negotiated a Consent Agreement to resolve the NOV. The Respondent agreed to conduct specific sampling of contaminated soils and to provide an analysis of the extent of remaining contamination to RIDEM's OWM. The Respondent further agreed to comply with the removal of the contaminated soil or otherwise take action to prevent human contact with the contaminated soil and/or prevent environmental degradation in accordance with requirements prescribed by the OWM. The Respondent agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $23,169.00. The OC&I agreed to offset $12,500.00 which represents the gravity portion of the penalty for Respondent's completion of a Supplemental Environmental Project ("SEP"). The SEP consists of the creation of a Project Tracking Manual to be used by a consultant to audit compliance with multiple environmental permit requirements for Respondent's Route 403 project. The estimated cost of the SEP is $30,107.34. The OC&I further agreed to set aside the economic benefit portion of the penalty ($10,669.00) provided that Respondent shows through documentation that costs associated with sampling requirements required in the Consent Agreement eliminate any economic benefit that Respondent may have enjoyed by its failure to comply with the RAWP. The Respondent agreed to pay the full penalty in the NOV ($35,669.00) plus an additional penalty of $500.00 per week in the event that there is a failure to comply with the performance requirements in the Consent Agreement.
August 23, 2007 - OC&I/AIR File No. 07 - 01 re: Dry Bridge Sand & Stone, Inc. for its facility located at 471 Dry Bridge Road in the Town of North Kingstown. On February 15, 2007 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated RIDEM's Air Pollution Control ("APC") Regulations and the conditions set forth in an Emissions Cap approval issued by the Office of Air Resources ("OAR") pursuant to APC Regulation No. 29 entitled "Operating Permits". The violations pertained to Respondent's failure to maintain required records pertaining to particulate matter emissions from the facility. The failure to maintain adequate records has prevented RIDEM from determining Respondent's compliance with its Emissions Cap. The OAR issued a Letter of Noncompliance ("LNC") to Respondent on July 30, 2003 informing the Respondent of the noncompliance. The Respondent failed to provide required records in response to the LNC. On or about November 30, 2005 the OAR issued a Notice of Alleged Violations ("NOAV") to the Respondent requiring the Respondent to document compliance. The Respondent did not comply with the NOAV. On May 16, 2006 the OAR inspected the facility and confirmed that the Respondent remained in noncompliance with the recordkeeping requirements of its Emissions Cap. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to achieve compliance with all record keeping requirements and assessed a penalty in the amount of $7,500.00. The Respondent requested a hearing to contest the issuance of the NOV. Prior to hearing, the Respondent and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent documented compliance with the order section in the NOV and agreed to a penalty in the amount of $4,500.00. The penalty was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement.
August 23, 2007 - OC&I/AIR File No. 06 -13 re: Karoway Polishing, Inc. for its facility located at 230 Oak Street in the City of Providence. The Respondent operates an organic solvent vapor cleaning machine or degreaser and uses trichloroethylene ("TCE") at the facility. The facility is considered a stationary source of air pollutants pursuant to RIDEM's Air Pollution Control ("APC") Regulations. The Respondent's solvent cleaning machine is subject to APC Regulation No. 36, entitled "Control of Emissions from Organic Solvent Cleaning". TCE is a listed toxic air contaminant in APC Regulation No. 22 entitled "Air Toxics". On March 27, 2007 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated several equipment related, operation related and recordkeeping and reporting related requirements of APC Regulation 36. On June 29, 2005 inspectors from RIDEM's Office of Air Resources ("OAR") inspected the facility and identified noncompliance with the APC Regulations. The OAR issued a Letter of Noncompliance to the Respondent detailing the violations observed and informing the Respondent of its obligation to achieve compliance. On June 14 and July 11, 2006 the OAR re-inspected the facility and found continuing noncompliance. On July 31, 2006 the OAR issued a Notice of Alleged Violations to the Respondent and referred the enforcement case to the OC&I. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to achieve compliance with the APC Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $7,500.00. The Respondent requested an administrative hearing to contest the NOV. Prior to hearing the Respondent and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent documented compliance with the order portion of the NOV and agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $4,500.00. OC&I agreed to allow the Respondent to pay $1,500.00 upon execution of the Consent Agreement and the remaining penalty amount of $3,000.00 to be paid in 6 installments of $500.00 each.
August 27, 2007 - OC&I/Solid Waste File No. 05 - 015 re: Richmond Sand & Gravel, Inc. for alleged violations observed on property located southwesterly of the intersection of Division Road and Hopkins Hill Road in the Town of West Greenwich. The property is part of the Big River Management Area under the control and management of the RI Water Resources Board. The Respondent is registered with RIDEM's Office of Waste Management to operate a Putrescible Waste Composting Facility. On December 21, 2006 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act, specifically Rhode Island General Law Section 23-18.9-5 and Solid Waste Regulation No. 8, Solid Waste Composting Facilities, Rule 8.7.41. The violations pertained to disposal of solid waste at other than a licensed solid waste management facility and failing to meet compost distribution requirements. The RI Water Resources Board leased the subject property to Amgen, Inc. for construction and use of a temporary employee parking area. Amgen, Inc. was required by the RI Water Resources Board to remove all construction and restore the property when temporary parking needs were over. Upon information and belief, Amgen, Inc. hired the Respondent to provide compost material to meet restoration requirements for the property. On 18 and 26 July 2005 an inspection by representatives of the OC&I revealed that approximately 8,230 cubic yards of processed (shredded) and treated wood, metal and plastic had been disposed on the property. The Water Resources Board informed the OC&I that the material was supposed to be compost material for stabilization of the property and was brought to the property by the Respondent on or about 2 May 2005. The OC&I evaluated specific samples of the material on the property and determined that the material did not meet Compost Quality requirements set forth in RIDEM's Solid Waste Regulations. By regulation, processed material marketed as compost that does not meet the regulatory standards for Class A, Class B or Class C compost is solid waste. As a result of OC&I's investigation and determination that the material was solid waste, the Respondent removed the waste material from the property and the completion of the removal was confirmed on 23 November 2005. In the NOV, the OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $51,945.00 for Respondent's noncompliance. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to hearing, the Respondent and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $26,945.00. OC&I allowed the penalty to be paid in 3 installments of $8,981.66 each. The Respondent has paid the first installment at this time.