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EPA ORDERS CENTRAL JEFFERSON COUNTY UTILITIES TO CORRECT CLEAN WATER ACT VIOLATIONS

Release Date: 12/01/2005
Contact Information:

Environmental News
Martin Kessler
(913) 551-7236

kessler.martin@epa.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 1, 2005

EPA ORDERS CENTRAL JEFFERSON COUNTY UTILITIES TO CORRECT CLEAN WATER ACT VIOLATIONS

EPA has issued an administrative compliance order to the Central Jefferson County Utilities’ wastewater treatment plant to immediately correct significant, long-standing violations of the Clean Water Act.

The Central Jefferson County Utilities’ (CJCU) plant services the Raintree Plantation subdivision. The plant does not have sufficient capacity and has not been properly operated and maintained, which has caused illegal discharges of sewage to Gallagher Creek.

To prevent further illegal discharges and environmental harm, the order prohibits CJCU from allowing new hookups to its wastewater system unless it certifies that the system has sufficient capacity to handle the additional flows.

The order also requires CJCU to clean up the sewage that it has illegally discharged into Gallagher Creek. In addition, the order requires CJCU to immediately rectify some of its ongoing operation and maintenance problems.

EPA has closely coordinated with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) on this action. EPA issued the order after CJCU failed to work with MDNR to correct its problems in a cooperative manner.

EPA understands that future growth is expected in the Raintree Plantation subdivision. CJCU has applied for and received a permit to upgrade construction on its wastewater treatment plant, but it is our understanding that they have not broken ground on this project yet. EPA issued the order to prevent further damage to the environment while the plant expansion is pending.

The order only addresses these immediate actions. Additional actions requiring further long-term plant improvements, as well as penalties, are possible.