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Home > Programs > Bureau of Environmental Protection > Office of Compliance and Inspection > Enforcement Summaries > July 2004 Summary

 
July 2004 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 July 2004. 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 Technical and Customer 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 Maureen Casey at 401-222-4700 ext. 7307, fax 401-222-3810.

Formal Enforcement Actions Issued:

July 9, 2004 - OC&I/RCRA File No. 03-050 re: Arkwright, Inc. for property located at 538 Main Street, Assessor's Plat 103, Lots 1.1 in the Town of Coventry, Assessor's Plat 30, Lots 84 and 258 in the City of Cranston and Assessor's Plat 1, Lot 6 in the Town of Scituate. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Hazardous Waste Management ("the Hazardous Waste Regulations") and Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations related to the management and handling of hazardous waste. The violations pertain to the Respondent's failure to label containers of hazardous waste, failing to affix an accumulation start date on hazardous waste containers, failing to inspect containers of hazardous waste on a weekly basis and tanks of hazardous waste on a daily basis, failing to provide secondary containment for containers and tanks of liquid hazardous waste and failing to determine if all of its waste meets the definition of a hazardous waste. The OC&I ordered the Respondent to comply with the Hazardous Waste Regulations and assessed an administrative penalty in the amount of $18,500.00.

July 9, 2004 - OC&I/RCRA File No. 03-042 re: Angelo DiBiasio d/b/a Angelo's Garage regarding property located at 1707 Plainfield Pike, Assessor's Plat 26, Lot 115 in the Town of Johnston. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode General Law 23-19.1.9 relating to hazardous waste management and RIDEM's Hazardous Waste Regulations. The violations pertain to the Respondent's failure to properly determine if any of Respondent's wastes met the definition of a hazardous waste and failing to properly manage Respondent's hazardous waste in compliance with the Hazardous Waste Regulations. The Respondent was informed of his obligation to determine if any of his waste was hazardous under the Hazardous Waste Regulations in a Letter of Non-Compliance ("LNC") issued to the Respondent on 13 November 2003. The Respondent was required to comply within 30 days of receipt of the LNC. The Respondent did not comply with the original compliance schedule until 7 April 2004 when the Respondent submitted a chemical analysis of his waste to the RIDEM. RIDEM evaluated the analytical information and determined that the Respondent was storing hazardous waste at his property but failed to manage the hazardous waste in accordance with the Hazardous Waste Management Act and RIDEM's Hazardous Waste Regulations. The Respondent was ordered to comply with the Hazardous Waste Regulations. A penalty in the amount of $4,000.00 was assessed in the NOV.

July 9, 2004 - OC&I/RCRA File No. 03-035 re: Northland Environmental Inc. for property located at 275 Allens Avenue in the City of Providence. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Hazardous Waste Management Regulations. The Respondent has a permit from the RIDEM to operate a hazardous waste Treatment, Storage and Disposal Facility at the property. The violations pertain to the Respondents' failure to comply with Rule 9.21 and 5.03 relating to the requirement that the owner and operator of a facility that initiates a shipment of hazardous waste complete the generator section of the Uniform Hazardous Waste Manifest for the shipment, Respondent's failure to comply with Rule 9.18B and Permit Condition 34 relating to the labeling of all containers holding hazardous waste in accordance with Rule 5.04, Respondent's failure to comply with Rule 9.18A and Permit Condition 34 relating to the requirement that hazardous waste stored in a container that is in poor condition be transferred to a container of good condition and Respondent's failure to comply with Rule 9.23 and Permit Section 4.30 relating to the requirement that Respondent store flammable hazardous waste located in the Upper Warehouse of 275 Allens Avenue only in the "Flammable/Water Reactive Storage Area". The OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $12,500.00 for Respondent's non-compliance.

July 9, 2004 - OC&I/RCRA File No. 02-079 re: Leo E. LeFebvre, Jr. d/b/a Woonsocket Auto Salvage for property located at 1 Madison Avenue, Assessor's Plat 42-O, Lot 396, File 15 in the City of Woonsocket. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Hazardous Waste Regulations and RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for the Investigation and Remediation of Hazardous Material Releases ("the Site Remediation Regulations"). The violations pertain to the Respondent's failure to immediately notify RIDEM in the event of a spill or release of hazardous waste or materials and to take immediate steps to prevent, contain and/or clean up the spill of hazardous waste or material. The Respondent was advised in a Letter of Non-Compliance ("LNC") issued on December 19, 2002 that RIDEM suspected, among other violations of a release of hazardous waste at the Respondent's gasoline tank removal area. The LNC required the respondent to investigate the release and to remediate the site in the event that hazardous waste or materials were discovered. The Respondent hired an environmental consultant to investigate the matter but failed to report the results of the investigation and failed to remediate the site by preventing additional spills or releases, containing the site and cleaning up the spill or release of hazardous waste and materials. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondent to remediate the site in compliance with the Site Remediation Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $10,000.00.

July 14, 2004 - OC&I/UST File No. 04-03375 re: ELJ, Inc. and Francis Brothers Realty, Inc. for property located at Metacom Avenue, Assessor's Plat 87, Lot 14 in the Town of Charlestown. The OC&I alleges that the Respondents violated RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Underground Storage Facilities Used for Petroleum Products and Hazardous Materials ("the UST Regulations"). The violations pertain to Respondents' failure to notify RIDEM of changes in registration information, failure to test cathodic protection systems, failure to comply with inventory record keeping requirements, failure to monitor the interstitial space between double walled USTs, failure to comply with line tightness testing requirements, failure to comply with overfill protection requirements and failure to maintain testing records. In the NOV OC&I ordered the Respondents to comply with the UST Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $23,167.00.

July 14, 2004 - OC&I/UST File No. 04-019215 re: 1889 Plainfield Pike Realty and Midland Farms, Inc. for property located at 1889 Plainfield Pike, Assessor's Plat 29, Lots 9 and 10 in the Town of Johnston. The OC&I alleges that the Respondents are in violation of RIDEM's UST Regulations. The violations pertain to the Respondents' failure to notify RIDEM of the installation of 2 USTs at the property and failure to obtain written approval for the installation of the USTs from the Director of RIDEM prior to the installation of the USTs. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondents to complete the installation of the USTs in full compliance of the UST Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $12,500.00.

July 15, 2004 - OC&I/Wetlands File No. C03-0281 and Water Pollution File No. WP 04-10 re: Mary V. Schlemmer, Alice M. Schlemmer/Life Estate to John David Schlemmer, Virginia Marie Shclemmer/Life Estate to John David Schlemmer, Virginia Schlemmer and Henry Lavoie for property located approximately 350 feet west of Mann School Road, to the rear of House Number 184 Mann School Rd., approximately 600 feet west/northwest of Utility Pole Number 40, approximately 1,400 feet northwest of the intersection of Mann School Road and Colwell Road and approximately 1,400 feet southeast of the intersection of Mann School Road and Burlingame Road, Assessor's Plat 47, Lots, 66, 66A, 66B, 73, and 131 in the Town of Smithfield. OC&I alleges that the Respondents are in violation of the Freshwater Wetlands Act and the Rules and Regulations Governing the Administration and Enforcement of the Freshwater Wetlands Act (Freshwater Wetland Regulations), the Water Pollution Act, and the Water Quality Regulations. The violations pertain to the discharge of water containing sediment to waters of the State and the alteration of wetlands by draining a Pond (and thereafter, excavating approximately 60% of the Pond bottom, grading, excavating, filling, and creating soil disturbance within the limits of the drained Pond), and excavating, filling, clearing, and grading within 50 Foot Perimeter Wetland and 100 Riverbank Wetland. This activity has resulted in unauthorized alterations of approximately 4.2 acres of Freshwater Wetland. The Respondents did not receive approval from the DEM to alter freshwater wetlands or discharge water containing sediment to the waters of the State from the Property. A verbal order to cease and desist any further alterations was issued to Henry Lavoie on November 19, 2003. A follow up inspection by DEM on May 21, 2004 revealed that further unauthorized wetland alterations occurred in violation of the verbal order to cease and desist. In the NOV OC&I ordered the restoration of the altered wetland. A penalty in the amount of $8,100.00 has been assessed jointly and severally against each named Respondent.

Formal Enforcement Cases Settled or Resolved:

July 07, 2004 - OC&I/Solid Waste File No. 01-048 re: Rosemary Halstead, Ronald J. Almeida, Manuel J. Almeida, John Almeida, and Ronald J. Almeida Trucking, Inc. for property located at 509 Brayton Road, Assessor's Map 3-8, Block 116, Lot 6 in the Town of Tiverton. On September 6, 2001, the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondents alleging that the Respondents violated Rhode Island's Refuse Disposal Act by disposing of solid waste on the property and by operating a solid waste management facility without a license. Despite a prior citation for disposal of 350 cubic yards of mixed solid waste on the property in 1995 and removal of the waste in 1996, on October 4, 2000, OC&I personnel observed more than 3,300 cubic yards of mixed solid waste on the property. Following the inspection, a Letter of Noncompliance was issued to Respondent Ronald J. Almeida requiring removal of the waste and disposal at a licensed solid waste management facility. Respondent Ronald J. Almeida filed a plan of remediation with the OC&I but failed to meet the prescribed deadlines for commencement and failed to complete removal of the waste. The OC&I ordered the respondent to immediately cease disposal of waste on the property, cease operation of a solid waste management facility, submit a plan and schedule for solid waste removal and remove the waste within 60 days of OC&I's approval of the plan. A penalty in the amount of $45,000.00 was assessed in the NOV. The Respondents filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Following a hearing and recommended decision from the AAD on all of the issues raised in the enforcement case, the Director issued a Final Agency Order on July 7, 2004. The Final Agency Order dismissed the NOV as to Manuel J. Almeida, sustained the NOV in full as to Ronald J. Almeida, Ronald J. Almeida Trucking and Rosemary Halstead, and sustained in part and dismissed in part as to John Almeida. The Final Agency Order requires that the Respondents shall immediately cease the acceptance and/or disposal of solid waste on the property, shall submit a written plan and schedule for solid waste removal for RIDEM approval, shall implement removal of all solid waste from the property and dispose of the waste at a licensed solid waste management facility within 60 days of RIDEM's approval of the plan, and shall submit documentation of disposal of the waste to RIDEM. An administrative penalty in the amount of $15,000.00 is assessed, jointly and severally, against Respondents Ronald J. Almeida, Ronald J. Almeida Trucking and Rosemary Halstead. An administrative penalty in the amount of $30,000.00 is assessed, jointly and severally, against Respondents Ronald J. Almeida, Ronald J. Almeida trucking, Rosemary Halstead and John Almeida. Payment of the penalties is due within 30 days from the date of entry of the Final Agency Order.

July 12, 2004 - OC&I/ UST File No. 04-00096 re: Colbea Enterprises, LLC, Prospect Development Corporation and St. Angelo Realty Company for property located at 242 County Road, Assessor's Plat 23, Lot 249 in the Town of Barrington. On February 10, 2004 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondents alleging that the Respondents violated RIDEM's UST Regulations. The violations pertained to Respondents substantially modifying a registered UST facility without prior written notification to and approval of the Director and their failure to utilize a continuous monitoring system to perform monthly leak tests for single-walled UST systems. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondents to comply with the UST Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $8,750.00. Respondent Colbea filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to hearing and without resorting to filing a complaint in Superior Court against the remaining Respondents that did not file an appeal with the NOV, the Respondents and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondents were able to show that compliance with Section D 1 of the order portion of the NOV had been met. A penalty in the amount of $3,750.00 was agreed to in the Consent Agreement.

July 22, 2004 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. 00-0040 and Wetlands File No. C00-0160 re: SVF Foundation for property located approximately 500 feet south of Harrison Avenue, approximately 1,500 feet southeast of the intersection of Harrison Avenue and Fort Adams Road, Assessor's Plat 41, Lot 110 and Assessor's Plat 43, Lot 66 in the City of Newport. On April 30, 2001 OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated sections of Rhode Island's Water Pollution Law, RIDEM's Water Quality Regulations, the Freshwater Wetlands Act and RIDEM's Rules and Regulations Governing the Administration and Enforcement of the Freshwater Wetlands Act. The violations pertained to alterations of freshwater wetlands and waters of the State from the discharge of silt and sediment. Other alterations to wetlands include excavating, filling and creating soil disturbance within a Marsh; filling within a Forested Wetland Complex; excavating within an Area Subject to Storm Flowage; excavating within an Emergent Plant Community; and clearing within a second separate Forested Wetland. The total area affected by unauthorized activities was 20,800 square feet of freshwater wetland and 7.0 acres of Newport Harbor. The Respondent did not receive approval from the DEM to alter freshwater wetlands or discharge water or storm water containing sediment to the waters of the State from the Property. In the NOV OC&I ordered the Respondent to cease and desist from any further alterations and to prepare a plan to address compliance with the water quality regulations and to restore all wetlands. A penalty in the amount of $33,000 was assessed against the Respondent. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with AAD. Prior to a hearing on the NOV, the Respondent executed a Consent Agreement with OC&I to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent agreed to restore all freshwater wetlands by November 15, 2004 in accordance with a restoration plan worked out between OC&I and the Respondent and pay a reduced penalty of $14, 450.00. The Respondent has paid the penalty.

July 23, 2004-OC&I/Water Pollution File RIA309 and RIPDES Permit RI 0100251 re: Town of Smithfield for the Wastewater Treatment Facility. RIDEM issued a final permit to the Town of Smithfield for its wastewater discharge from the Town of Smithfield Waste Water Treatment Plant to the Woonasquatucket River on January 25, 2000 (the Permit). The Town filed an appeal of the Permit on February 22, 2000 and requested a stay of certain conditions in the Permit. The Town and RIDEM executed a Consent Agreement on March 26, 2001 to resolve the appeal of the Permit. One of the conditions of the Consent Agreement was that the Town would submit a Wastewater Facility Plan to RIDEM for review and approval. The purpose of the Wastewater Facility Plan was to evaluate how the Town was going to achieve compliance with the Permit limits for ammonia, phosphorus and BOD. The Town submitted a Wastewater Facility Plan to RIDEM on October 5, 2001. RIDEM issued comments to the Town, however, the Town failed to respond to the comments until September 9, 2002. This represented a delay of eight (8) months after the deadline specified in the Consent Agreement. During this delay, RIDEM issued 2 letters advising the Town of the non-compliance and that stipulated penalties were accruing for the Town's continued non-compliance. To resolve the non-compliance penalties, the Town agreed to pay $5,000.00. The Town has made the $5,000.00 payment to the RIDEM, thereby resolving this enforcement matter.

July 27, 2004 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. 02-03 re: Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation for the solid waste management facility ("the Facility") that the Respondent owns and operates located at 65 Shun Pike, Assessor's Plat 43, Lot 402, in the Town of Johnston. OC&I issued an NOV to the Respondent on October 29, 2002 alleging that the Respondent violated the Water Pollution Act, the Freshwater Wetlands Act, RIDEM's Water Pollution Regulations, Rhode Island Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (RIPDES) Regulations, and the Freshwater Wetland Regulations. The violations pertained to the discharge of water containing silt/sediment from the Facility to Cedar Swamp Brook and Upper Simmons Reservoir on a continuous basis from October 1998 through February 2002 and the Respondent's failure to comply with their RIPDES Permit as evidenced by a failure to: perform weekly inspections of the Facility, implement necessary corrective actions to control sediment/erosion, and perform weekly turbidity sampling of the sedimentation basins at the Facility. The Respondent submitted a report to RIDEM in October 2001 that assessed the impacts of sedimentation to Upper Simmons Reservoir. The report concluded that 1 1/2 feet of non-indigenous sediment is present in Upper Simmons Reservoir, that the majority of the sediment is in the northern portion of the Upper Simmons Reservoir and is newly deposited since the Upper Simmons Reservoir was last dredged in 1996, and that the Upper Simmons Reservoir receives sediment contribution from the Facility and other properties adjacent to the Facility. The violations also pertained to the discharge of Leachate from the Facility to a location where it is likely to enter the waters of the State that took place between December 1999 and August 2000. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to take specific actions to: prevent the discharge of Leachate to the waters of the State, prevent the discharge of silt/sediment to the waters of the State, and restore Cedar Swamp Brook and Upper Simmons Reservoir. The OC&I assessed an administrative penalty of $520,000.00. OC&I and the Respondent met on several occasions between November 2001 and July 2002 to discuss the draft NOV and a proposed settlement to resolve the NOV. A proposed Consent Agreement that reflects the discussions and general agreement that was reached between RIDEM and the Respondent was forwarded to the Respondent along with the NOV. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. The Respondent submitted a revised RIPDES Permit application to RIDEM in February 2004 that evaluated the performance of sedimentation basins 5 and 6 and submitted a Facility wide Erosion and Sediment Control Plan to DEM in April 2004. As a result of the RIDEM evaluation, the Respondent agreed to modify the outfall for sedimentation basin 6. Prior to hearing the Respondent and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent agreed to submit an updated Leachate Response Plan, comply with its final RIPDES Permit (which will include site specific pollutant limits for all of the sedimentation basin outfalls), and perform a survey of the impacts of sedimentation to all of Upper Simmons Reservoir (and submit a report to RIDEM of the survey findings by January 1, 2005). The parties agreed to a reduced penalty in the amount of $306,000.00 in the form of 2 Supplemental Environmental Projects and the payment of a cash penalty of $43,500.00 to RIDEM. The Supplemental Environmental Projects involved providing loam and hydro seed to establish a vegetative cap to control storm water runoff from property owned by Louis Vinagro, Jr. that is located on the eastern side of Green Hill Road in Johnston, RI across from the former New England Ecological Development facility. The Respondent completed all work associated with the Supplement Environmental Projects in October 2003. The Respondent has paid the penalty of $43,500.00.

July 27, 2004 - OC&I/AIR File No. 03-02 re: the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation (RIRRC) for its facilities located at 65 Shun Pike ("the Central Landfill facility") in the Town of Johnston and 2550 Plainfield Pike ("the RecoverMat facility") in the City of Cranston. On December 31, 2003, the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent is in violation of RIDEM's Air Pollution Control ("APC") Regulation No. 9, entitled "Air Pollution Control Permits", APC Regulation No. 14, entitled "Record Keeping and Reporting", APC Regulation No. 36 entitled "Control of Emissions from Organic Solvent Cleaning" and Rhode Island General Law Title 23, Chapter 23-23, entitled "Rhode Island Clean Air Act", Section 23-23-5, paragraph 19. The violations pertain to Respondent's failure to obtain air pollution pre-construction permits before installing and operating multiple diesel-fired generators used for compost grinding or RecoverMat grinding at its Central Landfill facility and its RecoverMat facility. The generators exceed the 5 MMBtu/hr maximum heat input capacity permit threshold and have the potential to emit nitrogen oxides ("NOx") in excess of 50 tons per year. For the Central Landfill facility, the Respondent also failed to submit an annual emission statement regarding emissions of volatile organic compounds ("VOCs") and NOx emissions and failed to maintain its cold cleaner (degreaser) with its cover closed while the cold cleaner was not actively being used. Prior to the issuance of the NOV, the Respondent obtained certain permits for certain generators for its RecoverMat facility and filed air pollution pre-construction permit applications for certain generators at its Central Landfill facility. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to achieve compliance with the APC Regulations and the RI Clean Air Act for all issues remaining in noncompliance. OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $28,500.00. 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 has submitted permit applications for its generators and received approvals for generators at its RecoverMat Facility. Respondent's applications for generators at its Central Landfill Facility are pending evaluation before the Office of Air Resources ("OAR"). The Respondent has agreed to operate its generators in compliance with OAR's approval once issued. The Respondent agreed to a penalty in the amount of $22,000.00. The penalty has been paid in full.

July 30, 2004 - OC&I/LUST File No. 04-03133 re: Souhail Khoury and Cory's Petroleum, Inc. for property located at 676 Putnam Pike, Assessor's Plat 4, Lot 7 in the Town of Smithfield. The OC&I alleges that the Respondents are in violation of RIDEM's UST Regulations. The violations pertain to precision testing requirements for USTs, annual testing of leak detection equipment, monthly testing of continuous monitoring equipment, maintenance of daily written inventory and monthly reconciliation records, maintenance of testing records and investigation of suspected releases of petroleum product. On 11 May 2001, 10 September 2001 and 22 January 2002 the OC&I informed the Respondents in writing of the non-compliance and those measures necessary to bring the facility back into compliance. Except for a single precision testing result submitted for September 2001, the Respondents failed to bring the facility into compliance with the UST Regulations. In the NOV, OC&I ordered the Respondents to comply with the applicable UST Regulations and assessed a penalty in the amount of $31,417.00. The Respondents filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to hearing, the Respondents and the OC&I executed a consent agreement to resolve the enforcement action. In the Consent Agreement, the Respondents agreed to conduct a site investigation of the property and to submit and comply with a correction action plan if necessary and to otherwise achieve compliance with the UST Regulations. The Respondents agreed to a penalty in the amount of $14,400.00. A payment schedule was agreed to as part of the Consent Agreement.

Superior Court Actions Issued:

None issued this month.

Superior Court Actions Settled or Resolved:

None settled or resolved this month.

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