December 2020 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 (OC&I) for December 2020. 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 the OC&I used to determine the penalty, and, by law, allows a respondent the ability to appeal or contest the NOV to the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) Administrative Adjudication Division (AAD). Since most NOVs are contested cases, the OC&I 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 the RIDEM's Office of Customer and Technical Assistance. The OC&I often resolve 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 Angela Spadoni at 401-222-4700 ext. 7307, fax 401-222-3810. Please note that formal case names appearing in blue text are linked to a PDF version of the unsigned document.

Formal Enforcement Actions Issued:

December 8, 2020 – Underground Storage Tank File No. OCI-UST-20-21-03176 re: INA Petroleum Inc. and ROAD RUNNERS FOOD MART, INC. for property located at 2862 Hartford Avenue, Assessor’s Plat 57, Lot 61 in the Town of Johnston, Rhode Island. The property includes a convenience store and a motor fuel storage and dispensing system (facility). INA Petroleum, Inc. owns the property. ROAD RUNNERS FOOD MART, INC. operates the facility. OC&I alleges that Respondents violated the Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous Materials. View the NOV.

Formal Enforcement Actions Settled or Resolved:

December 1, 2020 – Onsite Wastewater Treatment System File No. OCI-OWTS-17-108 re: Rhode Island Department of Administration for a property located at 173 Sayles Hill Road, Assessor's Plat 17, Lot 193 in the Town of North Smithfield, Rhode Island. The property includes a single-family residence that is served by an onsite wastewater treatment system (OWTS). The State of Rhode Island owns the property. Respondent is responsible for the maintenance and repair of the OWTS. On August 5, 2020, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondent alleging that Respondent violated the Rules Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems. View the NOV. Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, Respondent complied with the Order section of the NOV and submitted a letter to RIDEM requesting a full waiver of the administrative penalty assessed in the NOV for the reasons set forth in the letter. On December 1, 2020, RIDEM issued a letter to Respondent agreeing to waive the penalty and set forth the reasons for doing so in the letter.

December 10, 2020 – Underground Storage Tank File No. OCI-UST-18-72-1830 re: Rhode Island Department of Administration for a property located at 0 Main Street/301 South County Trail, Assessor’s Map 67, Block 4, Plat 113, Lot 1 in the Town of Exeter, Rhode Island. The property includes a garage and a motor fuel storage and dispensing system (facility). The State of Rhode Island owns and operates the facility. Respondent is responsible for the maintenance and repair of the facility. On August 5, 2020, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondent alleging that Respondent violated the Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Regulated Substances and Hazardous Materials. View the NOV. Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, Respondent complied with the Order section of the NOV and submitted a letter to RIDEM requesting a full waiver of the administrative penalty assessed in the NOV for the reasons set forth in the letter. On December 10, 2020, DEM issued a letter to Respondent agreeing to waive the penalty and set forth the reasons for doing so in the letter.

December 17, 2020 – Onsite Wastewater Treatment System File No. OCI-OWTS-14-42 re: Allison Allfrey for a property located at 136 Congdon Avenue, Assessor's Plat 68, Lot 68 in the Town of North Kingstown, Rhode Island. The property includes a single-family residence that was served by a cesspool. On August 6, 2020, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondent alleging that Respondent violated the Rhode Island Cesspool Act of 2007 and the Rules Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems. View the NOV. Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, Respondent complied with the Order section of the NOV and submitted documents to OC&I that supported a full waiver of the penalty.

December 18, 2020 – Onsite Wastewater Treatment System File No. OCI-OWTS-15-134 re: The Estate of David I. Smith for property located at 38 Sagamore Drive, Assessor's Map 28, Lot 104-1 in the Town of Charlestown, Rhode Island. The property includes a residential dwelling and was owned by Respondent. On May 10, 2016, OC&I issued a NOV to Respondent alleging that Respondent violated the Rules Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems. View the NOV. Respondent did not file an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Respondent complied with the Order section of the NOV and paid the full penalty assessed in the NOV to fully resolve the matter.

Superior Court Actions Issued:

None issued this month.

Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved:

December 1, 2020 – Onsite Wastewater Treatment System File No. OCI-OWTS-17-69 and Superior Court File No. PC19-6616 re: Plaintiff, Janet L. Coit, Director, RIDEM vs. Defendants Oscar A. Caicedo and Elizabeth D. Luna for property located at 787 Sandy Lane, Assessor's Plat 341, Lot 8 in the City of Warwick, Rhode Island. The property includes a single-family residence that is served by an onsite wastewater treatment system. Defendants own the property. On July 24, 2018, OC&I issued a NOV to Defendants alleging that Defendants violated the Rules Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (250-RICR-150-10-6). View the NOV. Defendants did not file an appeal of the NOV with AAD and did not comply with the NOV. On June 17, 2019, RIDEM filed a complaint in Superior Court asking the Court to order Defendants to comply with the NOV. View the Complaint. Defendants complied with the Order section of the NOV and submitted documents to OC&I that supported a full waiver of the administrative penalty assessed in the NOV.