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 2006. 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.
July 28, 2006 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. 06-04 re: the Rhode Island Department of Transportation for property located at one of its public works facility garages on Route #14, Plainfield Pike, in the Town of Foster and property at 10 Plainfield Pike in the Town of Foster. The OC&I alleges that the Respondent is in violation of Rhode Island's Water Pollution Act, RIDEM's Water Quality Regulations and RIDEM's Groundwater Quality Regulations. The violations pertain to Respondent's failure to properly manage and control runoff from Respondent's operating area to mix sand and road salt and stockpile their sand and road salt mixture. The Respondent's failure to manage and control runoff resulted in salt entering the groundwater by means of cracks in the asphalt mixing pad on the property and surface water runoff from the property. A private drinking water well located approximately 600 feet east of the facility has been confirmed as having been contaminated by salt. On October 4, 2004 the OC&I issued a Notice of Intent to Enforce ("NOIE") to the Respondent. The NOIE required immediate action to prevent further discharge of salt to groundwater, submission of a plan for the permanent solution to the alleged violation, submission of a plan to evaluate the full extent of groundwater pollution from the facility and submission of a plan to provide an alternate source of potable water to the residence with the contaminated well. The Respondent responded to the OC&I noting that Respondent commenced providing bottled water to the residence. To date, the Respondent has not complied with other requirements of the NOIE. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to take all necessary actions to prevent further discharge of salt to the groundwater, to submit a plan for the permanent solution to the alleged violation including corrective action that will be taken and a proposed timetable for completion., to evaluate the full extent of groundwater contamination at the facility and surrounding area, and to submit a plan to provide an alternate source of potable water to the residence. A penalty in the amount of $125,000.00 was assessed in the NOV.
July 31, 2006 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. 06-05 re: The Town of Middletown for its sewer Force Main from its Wave Avenue Pump Station in the Town of Middletown to a gravity sewer pipe tie-in located at the intersection of Memorial Boulevard and Bellevue Avenue in the City of Newport. The OC&I alleges and orders in an Immediate Compliance Order ("ICO") issued to the Respondent that the Respondent is in violation of the Water Pollution Act and RIDEM's Water Quality Regulations. The violations pertain to the Respondent's sewer Force Main that has ruptured on three (3) occasions over the last fourteen (14) months resulting in the discharge of 5.5 million gallons of sewage to waters of the State identified as Easton's Bay. Easton's Bay is designated as Class SA water that includes primary and secondary contact recreational activities, shellfish harvesting for direct human consumption and fish and wildlife habitat. Easton's Bay includes both public and private bathing beaches including Easton's Beach (First Beach) in the City of Newport and the Atlantic Beach Club in the Town of Middletown. Following the last Force Main rupture on July 11 and 12, 2006, the Atlantic Beach Club was closed for 14 days, Easton's Beach was closed for 3 days and 400 acres of Easton's Bay was closed to shell fishing for 4 ½ days. On July 14, 2006 representatives of the RIDEM inspected sections of the Force Main that had ruptured on May 22, 2005 and July 11, 2006. The inspection revealed that the Force Main is in very poor condition due to corrosion and is structurally unsound. The Respondent was aware of the problems associated with the Force Main and notified the RIDEM that it was in the preparation to undertake design, permitting and construction of a replacement Force Main. RIDEM determined that Respondent's anticipated delays in completing the replacement project were unacceptable and presented a threat to the public's health and safety due to the high likelihood of recurring ruptures and discharges of sewage to the waters of the State. In the ICO, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to complete the installation and begin operation of a temporary, above-ground, pressurized pipe to replace/by-pass the existing Force Main and convey all wastewater from the Wave Avenue Pumping Station to the gravity sewer at the intersection of Memorial Boulevard and Bellevue Avenue in the City of Newport within 30 days of receipt of the ICO. Pursuant to R.I.G.L. §§ 42-17.1-2 (u) (2) (A), the Respondent has no right to an administrative hearing with regard to the ICO.
July 06, 2006 - - OC&I/Hazardous Waste File No. 05 - 063 re: Regal Plating Company for property located at 85 South Street, Assessor's Plat 21, Lot 175, in the City of Providence. On March 2, 2006 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated RIDEM's Rules and Regulations for Hazardous Waste Management ("the Hazardous Waste Regulations") and the Code of Federal Regulations ("CFR") pertaining to the management of hazardous waste enforced by RIDEM. The violations pertained to the Respondent's failure to properly label all satellite containers holding hazardous waste, failure to conduct weekly inspections of all containers of hazardous waste in temporary 90 day storage, failure to provide annual hazardous waste training to company employees who handle hazardous waste and to maintain records of the training sessions, and failure to keep all containers of hazardous waste closed except when adding or removing waste. All of the violations are repeat violations by this Respondent. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondent to achieve compliance with the Hazardous Waste Regulations. A penalty in the amount of $12,000.00 was assessed in the NOV. The Respondent failed to request a hearing on the NOV. In lieu of proceeding to Superior Court to enforce the NOV, the Respondent and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent had already achieved compliance with the order portion of the NOV. The Respondent agreed to pay the penalty of $12,000.00. The OC&I agreed to allow the Respondent to pay $2,400.00 of the penalty upon execution of the Consent Agreement and to pay the remaining $9,600.00 over a period of 12 months.
July 11, 2006 - OC&I/UST File No. 05-01043 re: A. B. Munroe Dairy, Inc. and Armstrong Properties, LLC for property located at 151 and 170 North Brow Street, Assessor's Map 106, Block 2, Parcel 29 and Map 105, Block 4, Parcel 5 in the City of East Providence. On December 29, 2005 the OC&I issued a NOV alleging that the Respondent violated RIDEM's UST Regulations. The UST facility has a 10,000-gallon gasoline UST (actually diesel) and a 300-gallon No. 2 Heating Oil UST registered with the RIDEM. The violations pertained to: an unregistered heating oil UST discovered at the 170 North Brow Street Property, Respondents' failure to notify RIDEM that they changed the material stored in the 10,000-gallon gasoline UST, failure to upgrade bare steel sections of the product piping line for the 10,000-gallon UST, failure to compile inventory control records for the 10,000-gallon UST from May 2002 through May 2005, failure to perform tightness testing of the product piping for the 10,000-gallon UST during the years 2000, 2001, 2003 and 2004, failure to perform annual certification/testing of the automatic tank gauging system ("ATG") during the years 1995 through 2004, failing to maintain the spill containment basin for the 10,000-gallon UST clear of solid debris and maintain the basin as required by the UST Regulations, failure to label the fill port of the 10,000-gallon UST to identify the material stored in the tank, allowing the release of diesel fuel over an area of approximately 500 square feet on the tank fill pad of the 10,000-gallon UST and failure to submit to RIDEM completed compliance certifications and return to compliance plans as required by the ERP portion of the UST Regulations. In the NOV, the OC&I ordered the Respondents to clean the area of released petroleum product and to ascertain whether any of the material has reached the ground surface beneath the tank pad and to what extent if any. The Respondents were required to remove all contaminated soil and to manage the clean up in compliance with RIDEM's Oil Pollution Control Regulations. The OC&I ordered the Respondents to achieve compliance with the UST Regulations on all other cited violations. A penalty in the amount of $16,298.00 was assessed for Respondents' noncompliance. 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. The Respondents complied with the order portion of the NOV. For settlement purposes, the parties agreed to a penalty in the amount of $11,828.00. The OC&I agreed to offset $7,205.00 of the penalty in the form of a Supplemental Environmental Project ("SEP") proposed by the Respondents. The SEP consisted of the replacement of Respondents' heating oil USTs with above ground storage tanks. This replacement reduces the potential for unknown releases of fuel to the environment. The Respondents must complete the SEP before August 30, 2006. The remaining $4,623.00 was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement.
July 11, 2006 - OC&I/Water Pollution File No. WP 06- 03 re: Providence Water Supply Board for property located at 57-61 North Road in the Town of Scituate. The property includes the Philip J. Holton Purification Works Facility. The Facility treats, stores, and distributes drinking water from the Scituate Reservoir System. The Facility includes 2 sedimentation basins and 3 lagoons. The sedimentation basins are used to settle out particulate matter from the water. The particulate matter collects at the bottom of the sedimentation basins as sludge. The lagoons are used in series as a system to receive and treat sand filter backwash water prior to discharging the water to the Pawtuxet River. A Rhode Island Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (RIPDES) permit to discharge filter backwash water to the Pawtuxet River was issued to the Respondent by RIDEM on September 30, 1987. On March 6, 2006 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated the Water Pollution Act, the Freshwater Wetland Act, the RIDEM Water Quality Regulations, RIDEM RIPDES Regulations, and the RIDEM Freshwater Wetland Regulations. The violations pertained to the discharge of sedimentation basin sludge to the lagoons in noncompliance with the RIPDES permit and the release of approximately 3 million gallons of water/sludge on October 3, 2004 to adjacent freshwater wetlands and the Pawtuxet River as a result of a failure of one of the lagoons. The release caused adverse impacts to at least 4 ½ miles of the Pawtuxet River. OC&I alleged that the failure of the lagoon was the result of the Respondent's negligence. The Respondent initiated a cleanup of the adjacent freshwater wetlands in October 2004, which resulted in the excavation and removal of approximately 700 cubic yards of sludge. In the NOV the Respondent was assessed a penalty in the amount of $58,649.15. 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 $33,649.15. The penalty was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement.
July 12, 2006 - OC&I/Freshwater Wetlands File No. C01-0314 re: Joyce A. Traini-Palmari for property located approximately 100 feet south of Preakness Drive, approximately 450 feet east of the intersection of Bridle Drive and Preakness Drive, Assessor's Plat 26, Lot 248, in the Town of Lincoln. Dr. Rita Kurl and Dr. Rabinder Kurl are the current property owners. The property was previously owned by Joyce A. Traini-Palmari and was purchased by the Kurl's on July 27, 2001. On January 18, 2005 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated the Freshwater Wetlands Act and RIDEM's Freshwater Wetland Regulations. The violations pertained to clearing, grubbing, grading, filling (in the form of soil material) and creating soil disturbance within a Forested Wetland, Area Subject to Flooding, and Perimeter Wetland. The activities resulted in the unauthorized alteration of approximately 11,935 square feet of freshwater wetland. The wetland alterations occurred despite the Respondent having knowledge of the wetlands on the property through a permit that was issued by RIDEM to the prior owner of the property. OC&I issued a Notice of Intent to Enforce ("NOI") to the Respondent on November 1, 2001 requiring restoration of the altered wetlands on the Property. The Respondent failed to comply with the NOI. In the NOV the Respondent was ordered to restore the altered wetlands. OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $1,800.00. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV with the AAD. Prior to hearing, the Respondent, the current owners of the property and the OC&I executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent agreed to restore the wetlands on the property before October 31, 2006 and agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $1,700.00. The penalty was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement.
July 18, 2006 - OC&I/UST File No. 06 - 03732 re: The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority ("RIPTA") for property located on Coddington Highway, Assessor's Plat 2, Lot 3 in the City of Newport and Assessor's Plat 103, Lot 2 in the Town of Middletown. The Respondent is the owner and operator of one 20,000-gallon diesel fuel UST on the property. On March 23, 2006 the OC&I issued a NOV to the Respondent alleging that the Respondent violated RIDEM's UST Regulations. The violation pertained to the Respondent's failure to comply with the UST Environmental Results Program ("ERP") requirements set forth in Rule 8.03 of the 2005 UST Regulations. On June 9, 2005, RIDEM issued a letter to UST facilities informing them that the revised UST Regulations making the ERP mandatory would become effective on 28 June 2005 and that the completed compliance certification forms must be submitted on or before June 30, 2005. The 2005 UST Regulations became effective on June 28, 2005. On July 27, 2005, the RIDEM issued a Notice of Intent to Enforce to all UST facilities that had failed to comply with the ERP requirements of the UST Regulations. The owners/operators were given until August 31, 2005 to comply with the UST Regulations. The Respondent did not meet the filing deadline for submission of the ERP certification forms. In the NOV, the OC&I assessed a penalty in the amount of $1,500.00 for Respondent's noncompliance. The Respondent filed an appeal of the NOV to the AAD. Prior to hearing, the OC&I and the Respondent executed a Consent Agreement to resolve the enforcement action. The Respondent agreed to pay a penalty in the amount of $1,000.00. The penalty was paid upon execution of the Consent Agreement.