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FORMER MICHIGAN TREATMENT PLANT DIRECTOR SENTENCED

Release Date: 11/09/2001
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FOR RELEASE: FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 9, 2001
FORMER MICHIGAN TREATMENT PLANT DIRECTOR SENTENCED

Luke C. Hester 202-564-7818/hester.luke@epa.gov


Michael J. Kuhn, former superintendent of the Bay City, Mich., wastewater treatment plant, was sentenced on Oct. 18 to six months imprisonment and six months home confinement for knowingly violating the Clean Water Act. He ordered employees to discharge untreated sewage sludge into the Saginaw River and also falsified records. Kuhn also was ordered to pay a $6,000 fine and a $300 special assessment. The plant employees pumped sewage sludge into an emergency outfall ditch that flowed to the Saginaw River. Subsequently, on Kuhn’s order, an employee falsified a data record, while subsequently certifying the accuracy of the falsified data to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. Pumping sewage sludge into surface waters carries the risk of infection for people who come in contact with the water and can harm fish and wildlife. The case was investigated by the EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division and the Michigan Departmentof Environmental Quality and was prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit.

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