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U.S. EPA fines KB Home Nevada, Inc. $80,000 for Clean Water Act violations

Release Date: 8/2/2005
Contact Information: Lisa Fasano, (415) 947-4307

 Firm agreed last year to fund $193,000 in restoration projects

   
SAN FRANCISCO -- Under the terms of a settlement between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and KB Home Nevada, Inc., the Las Vegas-based developer will pay an $80,000 penalty for Clean Water Act violations at its 160-acre development in Southwestern Las Vegas.
 
    KB Home was ordered to halt work last September.  At that time, the company agreed to spend $193,000 on three environmental restoration projects in compensation for the violations.


     Between September and December 2003,  KB Home began clearing land at its 160-acre site in southwestern Las Vegas, slightly west of Fort Apache Road.  The company performed the work without the required Army Corps of Engineers permit and resulted in the discharge of dredged and fill material into tributaries of the Las Vegas Wash.

    "It's vital that anyone engaged in this scale of construction activity take basic steps to minimize impacts to desert washes, to maintain water quality, flood flow capacity, and wildlife habitat," said Alexis Strauss, director of the EPA's Water Division for the Pacific Southwest region. "The EPA will continue to be vigilant in ensuring activities affecting our waterways have the proper permits and management practices."


    After learning of the violations KB Home agreed to fund $193,000 to the Bureau of Land Management for work on wetlands restoration projects in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.  Projects included fencing Calico and Ash Springs, expanding the riparian enclosure at Wheeler Camp Spring and removing tamarisk and other invasive weeds at selected springs.  These restoration projects are still ongoing.


     Under the Clean Water Act, a developer must first get a permit before discharging dredged or fill material into regulated waterways.

    In their natural state, desert washes can provide many benefits including accommodation of flood waters, maintenance of water quality, recharge of groundwater, and support of fish and wildlife populations. Once damaged, these environments are difficult to restore and the benefits are often permanently lost.

   The Consent Agreement is open for a 30-day public comment period.  For more information on the Consent Agreement, please visit:
http://www.epa.gov/region9/enforcement/pubnotices/index.html#kbhomes
                         
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