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Home > Programs > Bureau of Environmental Protection > Office of Compliance and Inspection > Enforcement Summaries > January 2012 Summary

 
January 2012 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 2012. 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 addressed to Kayla Saccoccio at 401-222-4700 ext. 7307, fax 401-222-3810. Please note that formal case names appearing in blue text may be clicked with a computer mouse to open a PDF version of the unsigned document.

Formal Enforcement Actions Issued:

January 10, 2012 - Air File No. 11-21 re: City of East Providence for the wastewater treatment facility located at 1 Crest Drive in the city of East Providence. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Clean Air Act and the RIDEM's Air Pollution Control (APC) Regulation No. 9 - Air Pollution Control Permits. The violation pertains to the installation and operation of a 1,141 horsepower (HP) diesel fuel fired emergency generator at the facility without a permit from the RIDEM. On November 7, 2011, the Respondent submitted to the RIDEM an application for a general permit. The application stated that the emergency generator was installed in May 2011. The RIDEM's APC Regulation No. 9 requires a minor source permit from the RIDEM for any emergency generator with an internal combustion engine of 50 HP or larger and an initial start up date on or after November 15, 2007. In the NOV, OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $1,000.00.

January 12, 2012 - Air File No. 11-09 re: New England Petroleum Terminal, LLC for a facility located at 29 Terminal Road in the city of Providence. The facility stores petroleum products at the facility. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Clean Air Act and the RIDEM's Air Pollution Control (APC) Regulation No. 8 - Sulfur Content of Fuels. The violation pertains to the storage, use, sale or delivery of high sulfur fuel at or from the facility without a permit from the RIDEM. On March 2, 2010 the RIDEM inspected the facility. On March 26, 2010 the RIDEM received a letter from M.J. Bradley & Associates on behalf of the Respondent. The letter stated that the facility stores high sulfur fuel in one 100,000 barrel tank and high sulfur fuel from the facility is delivered to customers in Massachusetts. The letter requested approval from the RIDEM to store high sulfur (2%) residual oil at the facility as required by the RIDEM's APC Regulation No. 8. The RIDEM has not declared that a shortage of low sulfur fuel exists in Rhode Island during 2010 or 2011, pursuant to the RIDEM's APC Regulation No. 8. In the NOV, OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $10,000.00.

January 12, 2012 - Air File No. 11-11 re: Global Montello Group Corp for a facility located at 130 Terminal Road in the city of Providence. The Respondent distributes petroleum products from the facility. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Clean Air Act and the RIDEM's Air Pollution Control (APC) Regulation No. 8 - Sulfur Content of Fuels. The violation pertains to the delivery of high sulfur fuel for use inside or outside of Rhode Island without prior written approval of the RIDEM. On December 12, 2009 the RIDEM received a letter by facsimile from the Respondent. The letter stated that the Respondent delivers #6 high sulfur oil out of the facility. The Respondent has neither applied for nor received approval to deliver high sulfur fuel for use in or out of Rhode Island. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to cease delivery of high sulfur fuel from the facility until written approval from the RIDEM is received. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $10,000.00.

Formal Enforcement Cases Settled or Resolved:

January 11, 2012 - Solid Waste File No. SW 2011-04 re: Frank J. Strembecki, Jr. and Pearl Strembecki for property located at 285 Read School House Road in the town of Coventry. Pearl Strembecki owns the property. Frank J. Strembecki was the owner of the property, but is now deceased. On April 28, 2011 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondents alleging that the Respondents violated Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act and the RIDEM's Solid Waste Regulations. The violation pertained to the disposal of solid waste at other than a licensed solid waste management facility. The OC&I inspected the property on March 18, 2011. The inspection revealed approximately 1,435 cubic yards of solid waste deposited on the ground, which included numerous motor vehicles in varied states of disrepair, numerous motor homes in varied states of disrepair, box trailers, used tires, vehicle parts, household refuse, construction and demolition debris and other mixed solid waste. The Respondents do not possess an auto wrecking and salvage license issued by the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondents to dispose of all solid waste on the property at a licensed solid waste disposal facility. The OC&I did not assess an administrative penalty. Ms. Strembecki filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, the OC&I and Ms. Strembecki executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the NOV. Ms. Strembecki agreed to remove all solid waste from the property by June 1, 2012 and provide receipts to the OC&I showing that the waste was properly disposed.

January 12, 2012 - Air File No. 11-18 re: Town of West Warwick for the wastewater treatment facility located at 1 Pontiac Avenue in the town of West Warwick. The facility includes a wastewater pumping station identified as the Maisie Quinn Pumping Station located on Duke Street. On November 1, 2011 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. The violations pertained to the installation and operation of four emergency generators at the facility without a permit from the RIDEM. The RIDEM met with the Respondent's agents after the March/April 2010 floods and explained that permits are required from the RIDEM prior to the installation of new or rebuilt/repaired emergency generators. The RIDEM learned in June 2011 that the Respondent installed emergency generators at the wastewater treatment facility. The RIDEM issued a letter to the Respondent requesting information on all emergency generators installed at its wastewater treatment facility and pumping stations. On June 15, 2011 and June 29, 2011 the Respondent's consultant submitted letters to the RIDEM regarding the installation and operation of the generators. The letters stated that three diesel fired 1,214 horsepower (HP) emergency generators with a maximum heat input capacity of 8.41 million British thermal units per hour (BTUs/hour) were installed at the wastewater treatment plant. One emergency generator was installed on or about January 14, 2011 and the other two generators were installed on or about April 3, 2011. The letter also stated that one diesel fired 1,180 HP emergency generator with a maximum heat input capacity of 6.79 million BTUs/hour was installed at the Maisie Quinn pumping station in calendar year 2003. The RIDEM's APC Regulation No. 9 requires a minor source permit from the RIDEM for any emergency generator with an internal combustion engine of 50 HP or larger and an initial start up date on or after November 15, 2007 or for any fuel burning device designed to burn liquid fuels having a heat input capacity of 5.0 million BTUs or more per hour. In the NOV, the Respondent was ordered to submit to the RIDEM completed minor source permit applications for the generators. OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $10,000.00. The Respondent failed to file an appeal of the NOV with AAD. The Respondent submitted applications for the emergency generators to the RIDEM and offered to pay an administrative penalty of $4,000.00, which OC&I agreed to accept as full resolution of the NOV. The penalty has been paid.

January 23, 2012 - Dam File No. 035 (Gilleran Pond Dam) re: Mapleville Main, Inc for property located on the east side of Gazza Road, just north of the southern intersection of Gazza Road and Zenon Street, in the town of Burrillville. The property includes a dam and associated spillway. The dam was classified by the RIDEM as Significant Hazard. The Respondent owns the dam. On May 3, 2011 the OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Dam Safety. The violation pertained to the failure of the owner to maintain the dam in a safe condition. The dam was inspected on May 3, 2010. The inspection revealed an inoperable low level gate. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to repair the low level gate. The OC&I did not assess an administrative penalty. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to an administrative hearing on the NOV, the OC&I agreed to reevaluate the hazard classification report completed by GZA GeoEnvironmental on behalf of the RIDEM for the dam. The OC&I determined that the probable damage that would be caused by failure of the dam is not consistent with a Significant Hazard dam and is not consistent with other dams classified as such. For this reason the OC&I reclassified the dam as Low Hazard and rescinded the NOV.

Superior Court Actions Issued:

None issued this month.

Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved:

January 20, 2012 - Septic System File No. 2007 1516IS and CI07-0193 and Superior Court File No. PC 09-5507 re: Plaintiff Janet L. Coit, Director, RIDEM vs. Defendant James A. Mathews for property located at 11 Hill Top Drive, Assessor's Plat 219, Lot 74 in the city of Warwick. The property is assessed as a single family dwelling owned by the Defendant. On March 21, 2008 OC&I issued an NOV to the Defendant alleging that the Defendant violated the RIDEM's Rules and Regulations Establishing Minimum Standards Relating to Location, Design, Construction and Maintenance of Individual Sewage Disposal Systems. The violations pertained to the overflow of sewage from the sewage disposal system (ISDS) to the surface of the ground. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Defendant to cease the discharge of sewage to the surface of the ground, pump the ISDS as needed to prevent overflows, and/or repair the ISDS. OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $400.00. The Defendant did not file an appeal of the NOV with AAD, so the NOV automatically became a Final Compliance Order enforceable in Superior Court. On April 9, 2009 an inspection of the property by OC&I revealed that no efforts were made to repair the failed ISDS. On September 19, 2009 the RIDEM filed a complaint in Superior Court. In the complaint RIDEM asked the court to order the Defendant to immediately pump the ISDS to prevent sewage from overflowing to the ground and continue such pumping until the ISDS is repaired, reduce the discharge of sewage to the ISDS, repair the ISDS, and pay the full penalty of $400.00 assessed in the NOV. Prior to a court hearing, the RIDEM and the Defendant entered an Order with the court to resolve the complaint. The Defendant agreed to: retain a licensed septage hauler to pump the ISDS as often as necessary to prevent sewage overflows; discontinue any and all use of washing machines at the dwelling until the ISDS is repaired; install low flow water fixtures on all showers, sinks, and faucets and replace all toilets with low flush toilets; limit the occupancy of the dwelling to no more than three persons until the ISDS is repaired; continue to apply for financial assistance to repair the ISDS and upon receipt of adequate resources repair the ISDS; and prior to the transfer or sale of the property repair the ISDS.

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rev. 4/11/12