January 2015 Enforcement Action Summary

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 January 2015. 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.

Media inquiries should be addressed to Gail Mastrati at 401-222-4700 ext. 2402. Requests for file reviews should be emailed to dem.filereview@dem.ri.gov. More information is available at www.dem.ri.gov/programs/customertech/file-review.php. Please note that formal case names appearing in blue text are linked to a PDF version of the unsigned document.

Formal Enforcement Actions Issued:

January 2, 2015 - Underground Storage Tank File No. 2014-52-00850 re: Cambridge Petroleum Corporation, Newbury Enterprises, LLC and Souad Tashian Trust for property located at 3333 South County Trail, Assessor's Plat 18, Lot 40 in the town of East Greenwich. The property includes a convenience store and a motor fuel filling station and 5 underground storage tanks (USTs or tanks) used for the storage of petroleum products (facility). Souad Tashian Trust owns the property. Newbury Enterprises, LLC operates the facility. Cambridge Petroleum Corporation owns the USTs. The OC&I alleges that the Respondents are in violation of the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous Materials (UST Regulations). The violations pertain to the failure to: perform periodic testing of sacrificial anode cathodic protection; properly install a leak monitoring device; repair a malfunctioning leak monitoring device; immediately investigate release detection signals and alarms; keep spill containment basins and sumps free of liquid; label UST fill ports to identify the product stored inside the tank; ensure that trained and certified Class A, B and C operators are assigned to the facility and on duty during all operating hours; maintain a list of all Class C operators assigned to the facility; and ensure that a Class A or Class B UST facility operator conduct monthly inspections. On February 2, 2014 the OC&I inspected the facility and documented the violations. On July 3, 2014 the OC&I issued an informal written notice to the Respondents by certified mail for the violations. The notice required specific actions to correct the violations. On July 8, 2014 the notice was delivered to each Respondent. On July 16, 2014 the DEM received a letter from Newbury Enterprises, LLC. The letter stated that the corporation intended to comply with the notice. As of the date of the NOV, the Respondents have failed to comply with the notice. In the NOV the OC&I ordered the Respondents to achieve compliance with the RIDEM's UST Regulations. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $16,250.

3, 2014 - Underground Storage Tank File No. 2014-1-02996 re: Charles C. Potter for property located at 1304 Eddy Street, Assessor's Plat 87, Lot 1 in the city of Providence. The property includes a gasoline service station and 3 underground storage tanks (USTs or tanks) used for the storage of petroleum products. The Respondent owns the property. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous Materials (UST Regulations). The violation pertains to the abandonment of the USTs. On or about April 13, 2012 the RIDEM received a letter from Dianne Potter. Ms. Potter stated that the station was closed as it was no longer making a profit, that quotes were obtained from several companies to remove the USTs, and that the Respondent does not have the financial means to close the USTs based on the quotes received. On 30, 2013 the RIDEM inspected the station. The inspection revealed that the power supply to the continuous monitoring system and product dispensers was shut down and that there was no indication that the UST system was in operation. The RIDEM issued an informal written notice to the Respondent and Dianne Potter on January 8, 2014 for the violations. On January 21, 2014 the RIDEM received a letter from Ms. Potter in response to the notice. Ms. Potter stated that they do not have the financial means to comply with the notice and requested a hearing to discuss all options available to resolve the violations. In the NOV the OC&I ordered the Respondent to permanently close the USTs in accordance with the RIDEM's UST Regulations. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $6,071.

Formal Enforcement Cases Settled or Resolved:

17, 2014 - Freshwater Wetland File No. FW C10-224 re: Stephen R. Archambault for property located south-southeast of Whipple Road, Assessor's Plat 44, Lot 10 in the town of Lincoln and Assessor's Plat 42, Lot 14A in the town of Smithfield. The Respondent owns the property. On July 13, 2011 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated Rhode Island's Freshwater Wetlands Act and the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Governing the Administration and Enforcement of the Freshwater Wetlands Act. The violation pertained to clearing and filling (in the form of soil material and boulders) within Perimeter Wetland (along a pond in the northeast corner of the property); clearing and filling (in the form of at least soil material and boulders) within Riverbank Wetland (along the west-southwest side of the property); clearing and filling (in the form of at least soil material and boulders) within Riverbank Wetland (along the west-northwest side of the property); clearing and filling (in the form of at least soil material and boulders) within Perimeter Wetland (along the western side of the property); and clearing within Swamp (in the northeast corner of the property). This activity resulted in the unauthorized alteration of approximately 1 ½ acres of freshwater wetland. The OC&I inspected the property on October 19, 2010 and November 23, 2010 and documented the violations. On October 24, 2002 the RIDEM issued a permit to the Respondent authorizing work adjacent to some of the freshwater wetlands that were the subject of the NOV. The Respondent notified the RIDEM that he intended to comply with the permit. The Respondent failed to comply with the permit and altered other freshwater wetlands on the property that were not subject to the permit. The Respondent did not receive approval from the RIDEM to alter the freshwater wetlands. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to restore the freshwater wetlands. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $15,000. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, the RIDEM and the Respondent executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the NOV. The Respondent agreed to restore the altered wetlands by June 1, 2015 in accordance with a plan dated July 17, 2013 (as amended in the Consent Agreement). The Respondent also agreed to pay $12,000 in the form of a Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP). The SEP involves funding one-time visits to a minimum of 38 schools and one Rhode Island State House Recycling Awards event, both organized by the Rhode Island Schools Recycling Club. The funding will be made in 3 payments. The first payment of $6,000 was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement. The second payment of $3,000 is due within 3 months and the final payment is due within 6 months.

19, 2014 - Air File No. 13-12 re: Rhode Island LFG Genco, LLC for a facility located at 65 Shun Pike in the town of Johnston. The facility includes a gas conditioning and compression (GCC) plan, combustion turbines and flares. The Respondent owns and/or operates the facility and has a major source permit from the RIDEM to emit air pollutants from the facility. On February 21, 2014 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated Rhode Island's Clean Air Act and the RIDEM's Air Pollution Control (APC) Regulation No. 9 - Air Pollution Control Permits and the RIDEM's APC Regulation No. 22 - Air Toxics. The violation pertained to the installation of equipment without a permit from the RIDEM. On or about November 5, 2012 the Respondent installed and operated a bioreactor exhausting to a carbon canister system at 75 Shun Pike to control emissions from the facility (bioreactor). On or about 2012, the Respondent installed another carbon canister system at 75 Shun Pike to control emissions from a filtrate tank and tote filling operation (carbon canister system). On or about July 9, 2013 the town of Johnston ordered that the bioreactor be shut down. The Respondent complied with the town's order. On July 31, 2013 the RIDEM received a request from GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc. on behalf of the Respondent to revise the permit. The request included an updated air toxics evaluation for the facility. The RIDEM's review of the evaluation revealed that the bioreactor had the potential to increase emissions of 6 listed toxic air contaminants (benzene; 1,4-dichlorobenzene; tetrachloroethylene; toluene; naphthalene; and hydrogen sulfide) by greater than the minimum quantity for that contaminant in the RIDEM's APC Regulations, indicating that the Respondent should have applied for a minor source permit from the RIDEM for the bioreactor prior to installation. On August 6, 2013 the RIDEM responded to the Respondent's request by revising the permit allowing emissions from the bioreactor to be exhausted to the GCC flare, eliminating the need for the bioreactor permit. On or about August 16, 2013 the Respondent submitted to the RIDEM a registration form for the carbon canister system. On September 19, 2013 the RIDEM approved the registration for the carbon canister system. In the NOV, the OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $16,790. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, the Respondent paid the full penalty of $16,790 assessed in the NOV.

23, 2014 - Multi Media/Oil Pollution, Solid Waste, Site Remediation, and Hazardous Waste/File No. SW 07-016 re: Torti Realty, Inc. for property located at the northwestern end of West Russe Street, Assessor's Plat 6, Lot 3232, in the city of Cranston. The Respondent owns the property. On September 10, 2008 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated the RIDEM's Oil Pollution Control Regulations, Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act, the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for the Investigation and Remediation of Hazardous Material Releases, and the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Hazardous Waste Management. The violations pertained to the following: unauthorized disposal of solid waste (in the form of used tires, abandoned trailer and dump truck containing mixed solid waste, abandoned cement mixer, damaged and discarded steel trench boxes containing mixed solid waste, and an empty steel fuel tank); soil contaminated with oil; improper storage of unlabeled containers holding used oil; and lack of proper spill control equipment. Inspections of the property by the OC&I in February 2004 and March 2006 revealed the unauthorized disposal of solid waste. In June 2006 the OC&I issued a letter of non-compliance (LNC) to the Respondent. The LNC required that all solid waste be removed and properly disposed. The Respondent did not comply with the LNC. Inspections by the OC&I in July 2006, September 2006, March 2007, and May 2008 revealed that solid waste was still disposed on the property. The inspections also revealed several containers of used oil that were unlabeled and improperly stored. None of the containers holding oil were on an impervious surface, except one 55-gallon container. Soil contaminated with oil was present around several of the containers and a 275-gallon tank. None of the containers holding oil were stored under a roofed structure, and no spill control equipment was on site. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to immediately cease the disposal of solid waste and discharge of oil to the land, label all containers holding used oil, ensure all containers holding used oil stored outside are placed on an impervious surface under a roofed structure, and maintain adequate spill control equipment and within 90 days complete the proper removal of all solid waste and oil contaminated soil. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $12,500. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, the Respondent submitted a plan to remediate the property (the RIDEM reviewed the plan and issued a remedial approval letter (RAL) on July 18, 2013), and the OC&I and the Respondent executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the NOV. The Respondent agreed to remediate the property in accordance with the RAL within 180 days and agreed to pay to the RIDEM the penalty of $9,000 within 10 days of the transfer of title to the property.

Superior Court Actions Issued:

9, 2014 - OWTS File No. 12-41 and Superior Court File No. PM 2014-6054 re: Plaintiff Janet L. Coit, Director, RIDEM vs. Defendant Michael D. Boyajian for property located at 22 Clara Avenue, Assessor's Plat 355, Lot 38 in the city of Warwick. The property includes a residential dwelling and is owned by the Defendant. On June 1, 2012 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Defendant alleging that the Defendant violated the RIDEM's Rules Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (OWTS Regulations). The violation pertained to the discharge of sewage from the onsite wastewater treatment system (OWTS) for the dwelling to the surface of the ground. On March 26, 2012, the OC&I inspected the property and documented the violation. On March 29, 2012, the OC&I issued an informal written notice to the Defendant for the violation. The Defendant failed to comply with the notice. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Defendant to keep the OWTS pumped as often as necessary to prevent sewage overflows, have the OWTS evaluated by a licensed OWTS designer to determine the cause of the failure and repair the OWTS, if necessary. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $1,000. The Defendant failed to file an appeal of the NOV and failed to comply with the NOV. On March 19, 2014 the OC&I inspected the property and observed that sewage was overflowing from the OWTS to the surface of the ground. In the Superior Court complaint, the RIDEM is asking the Court to order the Defendant to comply with the NOV.

Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved:

None settled or resolved this month.